Mk.3:1,5 -TPT – Then Jesus left them and went again into the synagogue, where he encountered a man who had an atrophied, paralyzed hand…. Then looking around at everyone, Jesus was moved with indignation and grieved by the hardness of their hearts and said to the man, “Now stretch out your hand!” As he stretched out his hand, it was instantly healed!
This is a beautiful story of Jesus and His love for each one of us displayed in the healing of the man with the withered hand. Jerome says that this man approached Jesus and told Him, “I was a stonemason working with my hands. Jesus, I beg you to heal me so that I don’t have to shamefully beg for food”. This brings the personal touch on the story. This was an everyday man trying to make a living supporting his family who struggling because of the injury to his hand. Jesus saw him and compassion reached out to this desperate man. “Stretch out your hand,” Jesus said. The rest was history. In a moment his hand was perfectly whole. This story is really about all of us. Without Christ in our lives all of us have a withered hand. We are struggling through life trying to just get by, frustrated by the ineffectiveness of our own efforts. One word from Christ will change that. Here are the notes from the Passion Translation on today’s verse.
“This miracle is found in Matthew, Mark, and Luke. It contains valuable lessons for us today, for the hand symbolizes holding, giving, receiving, doing. It was his right hand (Luke 6:6), which brings the added significance of power, pleasure (Ps. 16:11), approval (Heb. 1:13), and righteousness (Ps. 48:10). A crippled right hand points to the lack of all these things. Human beings are helpless before God, crippled in all our works. But the power of Jesus heals our limitations and brokenness. Religion cannot heal us, but Jesus can.”
I love to think about how miracles change people’s lives. Can you imagine when this man’s wife and children saw his hand made whole? What about his friends or his customers? Just one miracle sets people to talking and points people directly to Christ. As for the man himself, he couldn’t wait to get back to work. He never realized what a blessing his skill and ability to work was until he couldn’t do it anymore. The end result is what miracles are all about, God is glorified and we are restored to our happy life.