“When Jesus expels demons and heals the sick, he is driving out of creation the powers of destruction, and is healing and restoring created beings who are hurt and sick. The lordship of God, to which the healings witness, restores creation to health. Jesus’ healings are not supernatural miracles in a natural world. They are the only truly ‘natural’ thing in a world that is unnatural, demonized and wounded. . . . Finally, with the resurrection of Christ, the new creation begins, pars pro toto, with the crucified one.”
Jürgen Moltmann, The Way of Jesus Christ (Minneapolis, 1993), pages 98-99, HT: Ray Ortlund.
Now he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath. And behold, there was a woman who had had a disabling spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not fully straighten herself.
When Jesus saw her, he called her over and said to her, “Woman, you are freed from your disability.” And he laid his hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and she glorified God.
But the ruler of the synagogue, indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, said to the people, “There are six days in which work ought to be done. Come on those days and be healed, and not on the Sabbath day.”
Then the Lord answered him, “You hypocrites! Does not each of you on the Sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the manger and lead it away to water it? And ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham whom Satan bound for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath day?”
As he said these things, all his adversaries were put to shame, and all the people rejoiced at all the glorious things that were done by him.
He said therefore, “What is the kingdom of God like? And to what shall I compare it? It is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his garden, and it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air made nests in its branches.”
And again he said, “To what shall I compare the kingdom of God? It is like leaven that a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, until it was all leavened.” (Luke 13:10-21, English Standard Version)
There are important connections between the loving, compassionate, freeing work that King Jesus does when he heals and performs miracles, his proclamation of the Kingdom of God, and the meaning of the Sabbath. And I am eager to preach about it - and exult in and exalt Father, Son, and Spirit - this coming Sunday.
Maybe I'll see you at Calvary!