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Jesus heals the infirm woman in synagogue — Missionary Training Center presentation

The infirm woman in the synagogue  — Missionary Training Center presentation — Luke 13:10-17

  • Verse 10:
    • He was probably preaching from the Torah, which was an honor and a privilege.  Jesus could have easily stated to the congregation that He was the one who delivered these sacred words to Moses and the other prophets of the Old Testament!
    • Where was Jesus on the Sabbath day?  Honoring His Father by being in ‘church’, properly observing the Sabbath Day.
    • Jesus was repeatedly scorned by Jewish religious leaders, but there he was in a synagogue, teaching and exemplifying.
    • Where was his focus?  For the time being, His focus was on preaching the word of the Lord in plainness and purity.  Being the author of the very words he was reading, can we imagine the insights He shared?
    • “…in the synagogue…” — Despite this woman’s afflictions and maladies, she still went to ‘church’, she still did her duty!  Can we imagine the effort it took to get ready, to travel to the synagogue?  It would have been hard and embarrassing.  She was healed because she was in the right place at the right time.  She could have been a recluse, wallowing in self-pity.  No!  She exercised great faith and devotion.
  • Verse 11:
    • Behold?   2) Picture her posture, her stature, 18 years   3) What do we know about her already, that is not written in the verse?   4) Where do you think she was located?   5) Why “spirit” of infirmity rather than just infirmity?  See verse 16.
    • “…spirit of infirmity…” — Verse 16 says ‘bound by Satan’.  Was this more than just a physical disability?  Was it emotional or spiritual as well?  Regardless, Jesus healed both physically and spiritually.  There is no mention of sin by the Savior.
    • “…bowed together…” — Was this a bone abnormality?  Scoliosis?  Spina bifida?  Were tendons and ligaments involved?
  • Verse 12:
    •  Things to ponder
      • Discuss the verb “saw”.  How did Jesus “see” her?
      • Now where is Jesus’ focus?  All about the ONE!
      • Why didn’t Jesus go to her rather than calling her to come to him?
      • Picture her making her way up to the podium.  
      • What more do we know about her that is not written in the verse?
      • No conversation with her before healing her!  He knew of her faith.
      • Why “loosed from” rather than ‘healed of’ ?
    • “…saw her…” — He was teaching but He still noticed her.  He paid attention to the infirm!  He was always sensitive to those around Him who needed what only He could provide.  Are we sensitive to those around us who we could bless or serve?
    • “…called her to him…” — Where was she probably seated?  In the back!  The Scribes and Pharisees loved the ‘chief seat’ in the synagogue.  She was probably way in the back, but Jesus still noticed her!  Jesus gave her the opportunity to exercise her faith by having her come up, rather than going back to her.  Can we imagine how intimidating it was for her to make her way up to the front, with all eyes on her?
    • How revealing that there was no conversation between Jesus and the woman before He healed her.  There were no petitions, no requests; Jesus discerned of her faith and devotion and humility
    • Jesus interrupted His teaching to heal this good woman!  People take precedence over programs!
    • “…loosed…” — Why loosed rather than healed?  See discussion under verse 11.
  • Verse 13:
    • “…laid his hands…” — He healed her, yes, but I picture Jesus helping her straighten into an upright stance.  Picture the scene – standing erect after 18 years of hunching and crouching, 18 years of pain and incapacity!  What joy, exultation, and amazement must have filled her soul!
    • “…glorified God…” — Perhaps these are the two most important words contained in the written account.  She was grateful beyond description to the Savior, but she had the spiritual presence to recognize the source of even His power, that being God the Father.  She appropriately recognized that source first!  What a beautiful testimony to her faith, knowledge, and understanding.  It is very probable she had many words of love and appreciation for Jesus after she acknowledged the Father.  This one expression of gratitude to God tells us so much more about this woman that is not written in the verses.
    • This is a miracle beyond comprehension!  Consider the status of ligaments, bones, and tendons after 18 years of profound deformity.  She was “Immediately” made straight!  Physiologically this just couldn’t happen, but through the power of the Lord, it certainly could.  Picture yourself in the congregation.  
  • Verse 14:
    • “…said to the people…” — the ruler of the synagogue chastises Jesus, but doesn’t have the courage to speak directly to him.  He instead addresses the people in the synagogue.
    • The infirm woman did not seek out the healing, and no work was done.  Jesus spoke SEVEN WORDS!
    • Can you imagine how hard-hearted a person must be to witness this miracle and then say what he said?  Does he have any compassion for this sister?  What about us?  Strict and dogmatic or compassionate and caring?
    • “…in which men ought to work…” — the synagogue ruler equates Jesus with common ‘men’, connoting that there is nothing special about Him.
    • “…therefore, come and be healed, but not on the Sabbath day.” — he makes it sound as if these miraculous healings were everyday occurrences!   Just pick your day to be healed, but make sure it is not on the Sabbath.  He completely minimizes what just happened!
  • Verse 15:
    • “…answered him…” — Jesus speaks directly to the ruler of the synagogue, with no hesitancy or side-stepping.  The Savior implies, correctly, that this ruler was more concerned about animals than people.
  • Verse 16:
    • “…daughter of Abraham…” — Jesus viewed her not as an invalid or as an undesirable person, but as a daughter of divine and royal heritage, totally worthy of blessings, mercy and respect.  Our tendency is to shun, avoid, or ignore in similar circumstances.  He called her to come to Him!
    • “…eighteen years…” — How did Jesus know the length of time of her disability?  Inspiration!
    • “…Satan hath bound…” — Satan does not have power to impose or inflict “bindings” UNLESS we invite or allow him to do so.
  • Verse 17:
    • “adversaries” — Why would they have been present in the synagogue?  They must have followed Him around, looking for chances to denigrate, countermand, renounce, or embarrass the Savior.
    • “…people rejoiced…” — Do we rejoice in glorious things?  Are we aware of the many miracles that happen all around us?
  • Lessons to be learned:
    • Our ministering must be personal, face-to-face.
    • Always be aware of those who need us, and include them in our prayers.  Then go and do, respond!
    • Face critics with boldness but also with patience.

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