The Great Physician
by Larry White
And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, look, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples. And when the Pharisees saw it, they said to his disciples, “Why does your Master eat with publicans and sinners?” But when Jesus heard that, he said to them, “They that are whole do not need a physician, but they that are sick. But you go and learn what that means, ‘I will have mercy, and not sacrifice’: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”
Jesus has many facets to his character and work.
1. (Isa.53) He is the suffering servant who bore our sins on the cross.
2. (1Jno.2:1-2) He is an advocate. A paraclete who stands by our side when we are judged and pleads our case.
3. (Heb.2:10) He is the captain of our army and we are soldiers
4. (Jno.10:11) He is the shepherd who gently leads us to cool waters and green pastures and courageously defends us with his life.
5. Here in (Mt.9) he is a great physician or doctor who can heal all our diseases.
We can relate to this picture of Christ because we really sympathize with the sick ourselves – and Jesus clearly shows us the sympathizing grace of God in his attitude toward sinners.
It seems the worse the sickness or disease, the more we sympathize with the victims. Terrible diseases that we see in the world concern our society very deeply, because we can see how they ravage the helpless victims. And so we’re concerned with new remedies all the time for MS, Leukemia, cancer, or AIDS. These are diseases that we fear, so we frantically do research for a cure.
But the worst disease of them all in SIN, and that’s what Jesus was treating. This disease affects and eats away at the inner man. The world is very concerned about the diseases they can see that cripple and kill, they’re really obvious and they cut short their precious lives on earth.
But sin is very deceptive and deceitful and even pleasurable and the ravaging damage that it causes doesn’t seem obvious to the world. And so nobody gets too excited about it. People are generally unaware of what sin is doing to them because, as it works it also blinds the victim and corrupts the heart to what is really going on.
Isaiah was sent to Israel when their sin was in its advanced stages, and they were blind to their own condition.
“Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: they have forsaken Jehovah, they have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, they are gone away backward. Why should you be stricken any more? you will revolt more and more: the whole head is sick, and the whole heart faint. From the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness in it; but wounds, and bruises, and putrefying sores: they have not been closed, neither bound up, neither mollified with ointment.
Your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire: your land, foreigners devour it in your presence, and it is desolate, as overthrown by strangers. And the daughter of Zion is left as a hut in a vineyard, as a booth in a garden of cucumbers, as a besieged city.”
Sin, when left untreated is fatal. James said, “lust gives birth to sin and sin when it is full-grown gives birth to death.” This disease won’t cure itself. You have to have a physician.
Jeremiah, the last prophet of Judah, cries for the sickness of his people and speaks of the need of a doctor.
“The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved. For the hurt of the daughter of my people am I hurt; I am black; astonishment has taken hold on me. Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there? why then is not the health of the daughter of my people recovered?”
They could not cure it themselves – they must turn to God.
Jesus came to treat and cure the disease of sin. Malachi (4:2) said that he would come with healing in his wings. But Jesus is not just a general practitioner. He is a specialist, a great physician that has the ONLY cure for sin. He is a doctor who knows everything there is to know about sin. He has been around a long time and he has seen it all.
He is also a physician who knows everything there is to know about his patient. He knows you individually, he knows exactly what is wrong with you and how to cure it.
The power of the cure is in the power of his own blood that he has poured out for us. It is the power to wash clean the leprosy of sin. That is a tremendous healing power.
“unto him that loved us and washed us from our sins in his own blood.”
We don’t want to get to the point where we are blind – we don’t want to get to the point (like individuals with whom we have all had experience) where we just don’t want to hear it anymore.
Is there someone you know who has just given up? Have you yourself given up on the cure for sin in your life?
There was a woman in Luke 8, who had been bleeding for 12 years. Can you imagine? She had spent all her living on doctors – but she put her trust in what Jesus could do and came and just touched the hem of his robe and she was healed.
Jesus can heal you spiritually in your inner self. He can cleanse you from ALL unrighteousness, and recreate a new life within you. You don’t have to give up.
How about touching Jesus?
Is there any sin he has not seen before? No.
Is there any sin that he cannot cleanse? No.
Like Isaiah said to Israel in the same chapter:
“…though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow;
though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.
If ye be willing and obedient…”
If we are willing to put our trust in Jesus – repent of our sins – confess before men our belief – and be immersed into Christ, God will wash our sins… away!