Did you ever look at the gospels and notice the kind of people who came to Jesus? I’m not talking about the Pharisees, Sadducees, and others who came to trip him and trap him. I’m thinking of the ones who came just to hear him and to be with him, who came to be healed or blessed.
There was Zacchaeus, the “wee little” tax collector. Shunned because of his professions, hated for his relationship with the Romans, made fun of because of his height, Zacchaeus probably had few friends. Wealthy he may have been. Well liked? Not on your life. But he found in Jesus one who was a friend to “sinners” like himself. (Wasn’t one of his own disciples a former tax collector?) And so he climbed a tree …
There was a woman who was subject to bleeding. For twelve years she had not only been in misery physically, but had been ceremonially unclean, unable to live a normal life religiously or socially. Unable to have children. Unable to hope for a better future. The doctors tried their medicines, took her money, and pronounced her incurable. But she had heard that Jesus was different. His touch had opened the eyes of the blind and raised the dead. Unnamed and unnoticed, she slipped through the pressing crowd toward Jesus. If only she could touch his cloak …
There was John the Baptist. Before Jesus came preaching in Galilee, John had prepared the multitudes for him. Calling the people to repent in the greatest spiritual revival the people had ever seen, preaching the coming kingdom of the Messiah, and finally pointing his disciples to Jesus himself. Not long after, though, he was arrested by Herod, and John knew he was not long for this world. Doubts began to seep into his mind, questions for which he needed answers. Was the price that he was about to pay spent in vain, or was Jesus really the coming King. And so he sent messengers …
A Roman centurion with a sick servant. A military mob wanting a king. A synagogue ruler with a dying daughter. A young ruler wanting to know if he had done enough. All of them had one thing in common: desperation. They all came thinking that maybe, just maybe, this preacher from Galilee held their answers.
And still they come. Those whose needs go so much deeper than surface level. Those who have tried solution after solution, only to see failure after failure. The desperate. And still he mends souls and puts lives back together. He is still the Prince of Peace. What a wonderful Savior we serve!
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”