SUMMARY OF MATTHEW 8:1-17
After the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus came down from the mountain. His teaching amazed everyone. A man with leprosy approached Jesus and asked him to make him clean. Jesus healed the man and told him to not tell others but instead to go to the priests and offer a gift that Moses commanded as a testimony instead.
In Capernaum, a Roman centurion (an elite soldier) came to Jesus to ask him to heal one of his servants who is paralyzed. Jesus agreed to come. However, the centurion did not think he was worthy to have Jesus under his roof, so he asked Jesus to heal the man from afar. Jesus admired his faith and did so.
Jesus arrived at Peter’s house. His mother-in-law was sick. When he touched her, he healed her.
Jesus healed many more and cast out many demons.
BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 9, Day 2: Matthew 8:1-17
3) He asked Jesus in a humble way (kneeling and worshipping him) to heal him and Jesus did. He had faith Jesus could heal him; it was only a matter of if Jesus was willing. Leviticus 13:2-3 tells us that priests declared those with an infectious skin disease unceremoniously. Verses 44-46 tell us that those who continue to have an infectious skin disease must wear torn clothes, let his hair be unkempt, and cry out, “Unclean!” They must live alone and outside of camp. Here, Jesus touches the man without hesitation despite his unclean status.
4a) The centurion asked Jesus to heal one of his servants who is paralyzed. Jesus agreed to come.
b) However, the centurion did not think he was worthy to have Jesus under his roof, so he asked Jesus to heal the man from afar. Jesus admired his faith and did so.
5) Healing people showed Jesus’s compassion, his authority, and his power. It also showed he fulfilled prophecy, as we read in Isaiah about how their savior will heal the deaf, the blind, the lame, to free captives from prison, and to release those in the dark. It revealed he was God’s chosen one.
6) It’s encouraging that Jesus has the power to change lives.
Conclusions BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 9, Day 2: Matthew 8:1-17
I love these stories of Jesus’s healing ministry. It gives me hope that Jesus will heal others, and I love to imagine what it would have been like to see Jesus do so.
End Notes BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 9, Day 2: Matthew 8:1-17
We will not see 10 miracles that Jesus performs after the Sermon on the Mount. This served to further establish his authority. Matthew puts these in no particular order, and they differ considerably from the order in Mark and Luke. These chapters will focus on Jesus’s power and authority over all things. Here, we’ll see three people who normally would have been ignored in the Jewish culture.
The Healing of the Leper
Leprosy was akin to COVID-19 except you had no hope of a cure. You had to stay in isolation, away from friends and family. You had to stay 6 feet away from lepers (sound familiar?), so you wouldn’t be unclean. Those with leprosy were essentially dead. This man wanted cleansing — cleansing of his life, of the treatment he had to endure, of the mental anguish he suffered.
NOTE: This is the first place in the Bible where Jesus is called Lord. And note it’s by a leper, an outcast in society. It’s also Jesus’s first recorded healing in the Gospels.
You could not touch a leper, but Jesus did. He didn’t have to, but the leper needed to be touched. Mark 1:41 Jesus has compassion. He shows this to us each and every day.
We see Jesus carefully controlling his reputation when he tells the leper not to shout to the world what happened. Instead, he tells the leper to go quietly to the priest so he could be declared clean and enter society again. He did not want the crowds to get excited. Instead, he meets us where we are at. However, we see in Mark that the leper proclaimed his healing anyway. (Mark 1:44-45).
Jesus lived in Capernaum Matthew 4:13 , so he was going home here.
The Centurion was a man of substance, stature, and wealth. He must have cared a great deal about his servant to come to a Jewish leader on his behalf. Under Roman law, if a slave became ill, the owner could kill him. This would have been the normal reaction, not going to a rabbi.
FUN FACT: There are at least 7 centurions mentioned in the New Testament, and they are all good-hearted.
Jews were not allowed to enter Gentiles’ homes because they would become unclean. The centurion knew this so was looking out for Jesus.
The centurion understood that Jesus did not need to be present to heal. He had faith in Jesus’s powers.
You could say that this centurion understood who Jesus was much more than 99% of the Jewish people at this time, and more than most of the spiritual leaders/Pharisees, too.
Jesus praised this faith, going further by saying that Gentiles will share in God’s kingdom, too. He says that Jews are not guaranteed entry just because of their identity, either.
Heaven will have people sitting and people from everywhere.
FUN FACT: Jesus spoke of hell more so than any other in the Bible.
Jesus Heals Peter’s Mother-in-Law
This makes it clear that Peter was married, making it clear you did not have to be celibate to be a priest. Again, Jesus uses a touch to heal; he cares for the big hurts and the small hurts alike. She rises and serves.
Jesus Heals Many
Matthew shows Jesus as the true Messiah and the one Isaiah speaks of. Jesus takes our sicknesses and carries them himself. This is how we can be with God.
There were many possessed of demons at this time, and the reasoning for it is unclear. Bible scholars say it was just a dark time and magic was prevalent.
God heals physically in many ways as we see here — with a touch, words, and other ways. Jesus heals those who ask, those who others ask for, and those who don’t ask. God is sovereign in His healing powers.