Monday Motivator – January 26

On one average day in Capernaum, Jesus was traveling and teaching about the kingdom of God. A group of religious leaders from all over the region had come to check him out because He had a reputation that aroused their attention. They wanted to hear what he was teaching and doing, because rumors were circulating that he was often in conflict with the religious authorities.

Read Luke 5:17.

The “Pharisees” (meaning “separated ones”), numbered about 6,000 and were spread out over Palestine. They taught in synagogues, were supposed to be religious examples to the people, and acted as self appointed guardians of the Jewish Law and its proper observance. They taught the interpretations handed down by tradition had the same authority as the Law itself and ought to be applied in daily life. Many Pharisees, however, became rigid, imbalanced, and hypocritical.

The “teachers of the law” were not a religious party, even though a lot of them were Pharisees. They were respected as having expert knowledge of the details of the Jewish legal tradition and would be expected to form an opinion about the correctness of Jesus’ teaching and actions.

Dr. Luke reported on this one day that the POWER of the Lord was present to heal the sick (v 17). Why that day? Mark (2:1) and Matthew record that this scene took place in Jesus’ hometown. Matthew writes (Mt 13:58) about a day when Jesus didn’t get much respect or honor as a prophet in his hometown and couldn’t do many miracles because of a lack of faith? Same town, but two different situations. What was present on this occasion?

Jesus said (Matthew 28:18), “that all authority in heaven and earth had been given to me.” One 1st century historian (Luke 8:25) said that Jesus had power “over all of nature because he commanded the winds and the water and they obey him.” That same writer recorded in his sequel book (Acts 10:38) “how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, and how he went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with him.” Another 1st century writer (Paul in Romans 1:4) said “Jesus was declared to be the Son of God with power by his resurrection from the dead.”

A former Mafia gang member was asked about the influence he had before going to jail, and he replied, “In my position, you can’t describe the feeling of being able to do just about whatever you want.” An old writer said in Psalm 115:3, “Our God is in heaven. HE does whatever pleases him.” Did you hear the difference? FYI, Jesus has power to accomplish His purposes.

Luke 4:35-36 says that Jesus healed a man of being possessed by a demon; That same day he went to a friend named Peter’s house and they found his mother-in-law sick in bed. Jesus healed her immediately in 4:38-39; After dinner that same day, 4:40 says a lot of people brought their sick friends and family members to Jesus and Jesus healed them all. Some even had demons thrown out of them. On another day a man with leprosy (Luke 5:12-13) all over his body came to Jesus, asked to be healed, and was. Four different situations. God’s POWER was in action.

God has power over nature, demons, sickness, disease, even death itself. Think theologically. But even as you deepen your relationship with God, are you a vessel He can use to bless others? He wants you to walk in the fruit of the Spirit and be ready to be used in His power gifts, too.

Love is a verb,

Mike Olejarz

©2015 by Mike Olejarz

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