To understand what our mission as Jesus’ disciples involves, we must look to Jesus’ mission. As His disciples, His mission is our mission. In other words, those Jesus reached out to are the same ones we are to reach out to.
After Jesus finishes preaching His Sermon on the Mount, He comes down and heals several different groups of people. The miracles He performs not only informs us of Jesus’ authority, but also His mission.
Who Does Jesus Heal?
In Matthew 8:1-17, Jesus healed a leper, the Centurion’s servant, a woman, those possessed by demons, and those who had all kinds of sicknesses.
Lepers were outcasts, Centurions were Gentiles, and woman were considered second-class citizen’s. Jesus miracles then tell us we are to go to the outcasts, the nations, and those society considers unworthy. Not only are we to reach out to these groups, but we are to go to the spiritually oppressed. In other words, we are to go to all people’s.
What Are We To Proclaim?
Matthew quotes Isaiah in verse 17:
This was to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah, “He took our illnesses and bore our diseases.”
In order to understand Matthew’s use of Isaiah, we must realize disease, sickness, and spiritual oppression plagues us because of The Fall.
When Adam and Eve sinned, they plunged the entire human race into a corrupt world. Jesus’ death on the cross not only pays the penalty for our individual sins, but His sacrifice reconciles the world and brings about the restoration of all things.
Jesus’ death on the cross absorbed the sin bound up with our suffering.
If this is true, why do we still have sin and sickness?
It’s because we live in the already/not yet. Jesus’ earthly ministry and death inaugurates the kingdom, but sin will not be completely killed until He comes again.
Even though we still face the effects of sin, because Jesus took our illnesses and bore our diseases on the cross, we look forward to a time of perfection.
Since Jesus’ mission includes the restoration of all people’s, our mission as Jesus disciples should as well. We are to go to the outcasts, the nations, the second-class citizens, the spiritual oppressed, we are to go to all people’s.
We are to care for and share the gospel with them. We are to point all to the hope that is to come. The restoration of all things in Jesus Christ.
Questions for Reflection
- How are you reaching out to those Jesus calls us to be on mission to?
- What are some practical ways you would suggest to reach all kinds of people?
Post adapted from my recent sermon, Jesus’ Mission in His Miracles.