Text: Matthew 4: 12-25
Preaching and healing were the two cardinal points of Jesus’ ministry. He concentrated on preaching the kingdom of heaven and the healing miracles characterized the kind of life in that kingdom. His coming kingdom is where there will be no imperfections for;
‘none of the inhabitants shall say I am sick’. (Isaiah 33: 24)
It is remarkable to note that John had to go to prison before Jesus’ ministry could blossom fully (vs 12). What is the significance of this? It points to divine timing. John did mention that he must decrease for Jesus to increase. Also note the remarkable place of Jesus’ ministry – Capernaum a village (grassroot) intersecting many trade routes (a melting point of Jews and gentiles), well removed from any political interference.
Jesus ministry focused on preaching God’s kingdom; (vs 17), discipleship (vs 19) and healing (vs 23).
He called on all to repent toward making the kingdom and to ensure continuity, he selected disciples and nurtured them in the work from. Every ministry that must continue must focus on raising disciples. Lastly healing is an important part of the Gospel message.
Spiritual healing of the soul through repentance and forgiveness always precedes the physical healing. However, it is wrong to teach that born again believers must not get sick. The purpose of Jesus healings was to point people to the kingdom of heaven. His healings demonstrated what obtains there.
So what? Preaching is our primary assignment as believers. Ensuring the discipleship of those who turn to God through our ministries is next, then praying for confirming miracles is the last. This order sets our ministerial priorities right. It shouldn’t be the other way round, else, the preacher becomes frustrated and might be tempted to use diabolical means to sustain his magical miracles.