As soon as they left the synagogue, they went with James and John to the home of Simon and Andrew. Simon’s mother-in-law was in bed with a fever, and they told Jesus about her. So he went to her, took her hand and helped her up. The fever left her and she began to wait on them.

That evening after sunset the people brought to Jesus all the sick and demon-possessed. The whole town gathered at the door, and Jesus healed many who had various diseases. He also drove out many demons, but he would not let the demons speak because they knew who he was. (Mark 1:29-34)

“Whenever His hand is laid upon you, it gives inexpressible peace and comfort, and the sense that ‘underneath are the everlasting arms’, full of support, provision, comfort, and strength … His tenderness is inexpressibly sweet.”
-Oswald Chambers
Our Lord had just taught and healed with great power and authority. Now He was looking forward to the warmth of Peter’s hospitality. However, upon arriving on the premises of Peter’s home, He and His disciples discover that Peter’s mother-in-law is sick in bed with a fever. Enter the gracious Healer who demonstrates that His concern and care covers not only spiritual healing (as had been seen earlier when He was at the synagogue), but physical healing as well. Jesus’ authority and power extends to every realm of life.

Made aware of the sickness under Peter’s roof, Jesus goes to her, touches her, and heals her. She was not only healed, but strengthened to serve as well! What a lesson for us: Service will always overflow out of a life that is touched by the Master. His cure equips us for action.

Later in his life, Peter wrote that our gifts have been given to us in order that we in turn may give. Did he learn this lesson during this experience?

Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms. (1 Peter 4:10)

“My chains fell off, my heart was free. I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.” -Charles Wesley, “And Can It Be?”

The end of sunset on this particular Sabbath finds a deluge of the hurting seeking a healing touch from the Master. Not inclined to break the Law, the people of Capernaum waited to bring their sick until after the sun set–Sabbath occurring from sunset to sunset. Rabbinic regulations prohibited bearing burdens on the Sabbath–no matter if it meant helping someone in dire need. The town had gathered at Peter’s doorstep, bringing with them the hurting, and the weak, and the failing.

Are we not all in that predicament–hurting, or weak, or failing? Do we not all need a healing touch from the Master’s hand? God’s healing covers the great gamut of spiritual, emotional and physical needs–hallelujah for that! Isaiah’s words come to mind:

Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. (Isaiah 53:4)

Take It to Heart

While Jesus healed many physical ailments during His earthly ministry, His greater work on the cross healed the sickness of the soul. He took away all of our sins–carrying them as our great Burden Bearer. He bore the just judgment for our sins on the cross, leaving His peace and joy for us in the wake of His intense suffering.

When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. (Colossians 2:13-15)

“Peace is not found when you get into perfect circumstances. Peace is found because Jesus Christ, the Price of Peace, has gotten into you. Joy is the perfect partner to peace and is found in the same way as peace. Joy is never found in what you have or what you do, but in who you have living in you.” (Roy Lessin)