When they had crossed over, they came to the land of Gennesaret and anchored there. And when they came out of the boat, immediately the people recognized Him, ran through that whole surrounding region, and began to carry about on beds those who were sick to wherever they heard He was. Wherever He entered, into villages, cities, or the country, they laid the sick in the marketplaces, and begged Him that they might just touch the hem of His garment. And as many as touched Him were made well.Mark 6:53-56 NKJV
This last week, I was teaching on healing when I stumbled on these verses. I know I’ve read them, and even preached on them, but they seemed especially poignant to me this time. Jesus has had quite a time up to here. At the beginning of the chapter, He was essentially rejected in His hometown. They asked, “”Where did this man get these things?” “Isn’t this the carpenter?” And they took offense at him. (Mark 6:2,3) He then sent out the 12 to cast out devils and heal the sick. While they were gone, He heard of John the Baptist’s death. He then tried to get away, but the multitudes followed, and He fed the 5,000. Then He sent the 12 out to sea and walked on the water to save them. Finally, He and the disciples landed in Gennesaret.
This arrival was quite different from His arrival in Nazareth. Mark tells us, “immediately the people recognized Him.” They knew who He was, and that recognition prompted them to run through the whole region and pick up sick folks, bed and all! They brought them to wherever He was. They put people in need in His path, knowing that one touch from Jesus could change the trajectory of a life. They really recognized Him.
As I read this story, I had a disturbing thought. Do I act as if Jesus is really who I say He is? Do I recognize Him? If so, why am I not grabbing people and carrying them to wherever I think He is? Lord, help us. We get so used to the idea of going to church and worshipping and saying that “He is here, “ that we seem completely oblivious to the fact that “HE IS HERE!!!!! Today, just for today, let’s gather with an attitude and expectancy that says, “He is here!” And for their sake, “TELL SOMEBODY!!!”