We are continuing to look at the supernatural ministry of the Lord Jesus while He walked among us. Today we look at Mark's account of the healing of a deaf-mute:
31Then he returned from the region of Tyre and went through Sidon to the Sea of Galilee, in the region of the Decapolis. 32And they brought to him a man who was deaf and had a speech impediment, and they begged him to lay his hand on him. 33And taking him aside from the crowd privately, he put his fingers into his ears, and after spitting touched his tongue. 34And looking up to heaven, he sighed and said to him, “Ephphatha,” that is, “Be opened.” 35And his ears were opened, his tongue was released, and he spoke plainly. 36And Jesus charged them to tell no one. But the more he charged them, the more zealously they proclaimed it. 37And they were astonished beyond measure, saying, “He has done all things well. He even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak” (Mark 7:31-37).
No man could say that the Lord did things only a certain way. There was no formula for how He healed the sick. In all things, the Lord was dependent on what the Father showed Him. He could have just spoken the word of healing, and it would have been done, but He would have no means of healing exalted over another method. Christ exemplified complete dependence on the Father. He did not explain to His disciples why He took the man aside from the crowd, nor why He sighed before speaking the word of command, “Ephphatha,” that is, “Be opened” (v. 35). There are no magical words one must learn to pray for sick people to be made well, just learning to be obedient to the Holy Spirit's leading.
In this case, Jesus put His fingers in the man's ears and then after spitting; He touched the man's tongue. Doesn't that sound weird? Sometimes the Lord does things that offend a man's mind to reach his heart. Almost like Naaman the Syrian general who was told by the prophet Elijah to go and dip himself seven times in the dirty river Jordan (2 Kings 5). Naaman was offended at first, thinking the rivers of Syria were cleaner than the Jordan. When he was advised to obey, He went and washed in the Jordan and was completely healed of leprosy. Obedience is the key to seeing God at work among us.
When people saw what Jesus did, their testimony was, “they were astonished beyond measure, saying, “He has done all things well. He even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak” (v. 37). Yes, all of us who are disciples will look back at how the Lord has transformed us and we, also, can testify that He has done all things well for us. At the end of our lives, when we are looking forward to living with Christ for eternity, we also will be astonished at what He has done. Further to our death bed, there will come that resurrection day when we will look at one another in our new glorious body (1 Corinthians 15), and our joy will be full at the transformation by the power of God. Keith Thomas