February 11, 2021
When they had crossed over, they came to the land of Gennesaret. And when the men of that place recognized Him, they sent out into all that surrounding region, brought to Him all who were sick, and begged Him that they might only touch the hem of His garment. And as many as touched it were made perfectly well (Matthew 14:34-36).
Gennesaret was an area 5 miles southwest of Capernaum on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee. It was located on a fertile plain that produced a wide variety of crops. Large springs in the area provided plenty of water for irrigation. Because the land was so fertile, the people used all of it for farming - no towns or villages were located on that plain. The people who lived in the area built their houses and barns around the Plain of Gennesaret.
This was still within Jesus’ first retirement period - a time when He wanted to devote all of His attention and energy to training the 12 disciples. In less than 1 year He would be crucified, so His time with the disciples was critical and drawing to a close.
Again His personal desires had to be put on hold. When the people in the area heard Jesus had returned, they immediately came to see Him and brought their needy ones with them. Although He had healed many people in that area before, there were still more who were suffering.
We are again privileged to see and appreciate the compassion of Jesus for the human condition. People were, and are spiritually lost - like sheep without a shepherd. Because of our sinful nature we are a needful people; we are a broken people. We are vulnerable to the weaknesses and desires of the flesh so much so we seek out those who may be able to help us. The people naturally made their way to Jesus because, no matter their motive, He had proven to be a source of encouragement, strength, and healing.
We see that Jesus was willing to accommodate the people. “Come to Me,” Jesus said, “all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light" (Matthew 11:28-30). They came to Jesus. Millions have come to Jesus. People are still coming to Jesus, and will continue to do so until He returns to us on the earth. That’s His invitation to a spiritually lost and dying world, a broken and needy people. All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out (John 6:37).
“Lord, what a gracious promise You have given to us. What a wonderful example of love and compassion You have shown in ministering to those who made their way to You. Though a Christian, I still suffer the weaknesses of the flesh. I still make my way to You daily for help and healing. Thank You for Your invitation to come. Thank You for being there when I do come. May Your name be praised forever. Amen.”