The Gospel of Matthew

This devotional is written by Kezia Pollendine. Kezia has attended St Mary's for 7 years and is currently studying her A levels in History, Art and Music.

Matthew 9:18 - 34

Jesus Raises a Dead Girl and Heals a Sick Woman

 18 While he was saying this, a synagogue leader came and knelt before him and said, "My daughter has just died. But come and put your hand on her, and she will live." 19 Jesus got up and went with him, and so did his disciples.

20 Just then a woman who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak. 21 She said to herself, "If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed."

22 Jesus turned and saw her. "Take heart, daughter," he said, "your faith has healed you." And the woman was healed at that moment.

23 When Jesus entered the synagogue leader's house and saw the noisy crowd and people playing pipes, 24 he said, "Go away. The girl is not dead but asleep." But they laughed at him. 25 After the crowd had been put outside, he went in and took the girl by the hand, and she got up. 26 News of this spread through all that region.

Jesus Heals the Blind and the Mute

 27 As Jesus went on from there, two blind men followed him, calling out, "Have mercy on us, Son of David!"

28 When he had gone indoors, the blind men came to him, and he asked them, "Do you believe that I am able to do this?"

"Yes, Lord," they replied.

29 Then he touched their eyes and said, "According to your faith let it be done to you"; 30 and their sight was restored. Jesus warned them sternly, "See that no one knows about this." 31 But they went out and spread the news about him all over that region.

32 While they were going out, a man who was demon-possessed and could not talk was brought to Jesus. 33 And when the demon was driven out, the man who had been mute spoke. The crowd was amazed and said, "Nothing like this has ever been seen in Israel."

34 But the Pharisees said, "It is by the prince of demons that he drives out demons."


Reflection

In this passage, we see Jesus perform several miraculous acts of healing. What I first noticed about this passage was how each person had faith that Jesus could heal them. The Synagogue leader kneels before Jesus and declares what will happen if Jesus lays a hand on his dead daughter. There is no doubt in his mind that Jesus will raise her from the dead, he just asks for Jesus to be willing to come and help her. Similarly the woman that interrupts Jesus whilst he is on his way knows that if only she can touch his cloak, she will be healed by him. Each time Jesus is asked to heal someone he is being interrupted from what he is doing but Jesus does not make them wait, he is always willing to help them when they ask. All the people in this passage believe that Jesus is willing to help them and that he is able to heal them. This passage is a challenging one and I don't think that the main point of it is to say that we will always be healed if we have faith and that if we aren't healed, we don't have faith. For me, it is a reminder of the nature of Jesus, that he is available to us. I think that the faith that the people in the passage have is the present knowledge of who Jesus is, someone who is willing and able to help us, but we still need to have hope as it is what gives us strength and joy despite our current hunger and weariness. Particularly in this time of great anxiety and uncertainty, ask Jesus to fill you with hope and be reassured by the simple knowledge that he is willing and able to help you.

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