May 20, 2023
TIME TO OPEN
A deaf man with a speech impediment was brought to him, and the people begged Jesus to lay his hands on the man to heal him. Jesus led him away from the crowd so they could be alone. He put his fingers into the man’s ears. Then, spitting on his own fingers, he touched the man’s tongue. Looking up to heaven, he sighed and said, “Ephphatha,” which means, “Be opened!” Instantly the man could hear perfectly, and his tongue was freed so he could speak plainly!
Mark 7:32-35 NLT
This miracle is recorded only in the Gospel of Mark. Perhaps Mark felt the healing of deaf and dumb man from the non-Jewish area would interest his Roman audience. Mark lets us know the man had a speech problem and was deaf. Evidently, he was loved by the people of the community who begged Jesus to heal him. The people evidently had faith in the authority of Jesus to heal such a horrible disease. There is no indication the man had faith—it appears the faith for healing came more from the people than the man. Our faith can sometimes carry those to God who have lost their own faith. We see this in the gospels when four friends carry a paralyzed friend to Jesus and because of their faith Jesus heals the man. It appears to me this is what happens here. Because the man could not hear Jesus uses physical touch to trigger the man’s faith. Jesus puts his fingers in the man’s ears and then touches the man’s tongue. Jesus only speaks one word in Aramaic, “Ephphatha.” It is a word meaning “be loosed” or “be opened.” At the command of Jesus, the man is instantly made whole. One word from Jesus can transform our lives. One word from Jesus can release God’s power to flow through our failures, hurts, brokenness, and guilt. One word from Jesus can bring faith and fullness. One word from Jesus can change us forever. We need to be sure we are putting ourselves in the place to hear those words from Jesus. We need to also be willing to speak those words from Jesus to those around us. There are times God will use us to speak His word into the lives of the broken and sick.
Holy Spirit give me the boldness today to speak Your word to my world. Help me to hear Your words spoken to me.
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