Luke 5:17-26 (to be read during the sermon)
A Healing Balm Is Raised
“The Gospel is the power of God for the healing of everyone who believes.” -Romans 1:16
“A Healing Balm Is Raised” or “The Great Physician”
PP#2: A child with hives all over the back.
When Rebekah was little, we went to Hutchinson for supper at a buffet. When we were
heading over to the store, Reese noticed little red blotches on her neck. They were all over her backand tummy. We were very alarmed.she was having a reaction to something! We didn’tknow.maybe she would die. So we zoomed over to the hospital and took Rebekah into emergency.
When the doctor came in, I kid you not, this is exactly what he said, “Oh, she has hives. Just giveher some Benadryl.”
What? Hives? As in, “give someone hives” like we used to tease about back in grade school?
Really? Obviously we were clueless, and overreacting. But we were first-time parents and wereafraid she was dying! As we had driven to the hospital, we passed by like three convenience stores,a Kmart, Walmart and a grocery store. All had Benadryl. Readily available. The solution waseverywhere.and cheap. No.we had to go to emergency and spend $400 to be told to go buy $4medicine. The medicine was everywhere.we just needed to apply it.
PP#3: An image of a sick toddler with a thermometer.
A couple of years later we were talking to my sister-in-law. Her son, Noah, had been running
a fever. Over the past couple of days, his fever had slowly climbed.100, 101, 102, 103. She waswondering if she should take him in. She had been sick with a viral something-or-other, and knewthat he had it now, too. “If I take him in, they’ll just say it’s viral and that they can’t do anything forhim.” But on the other hand, if his fever climbed much higher, he could be in serious trouble. Thiscould really be life-threatening.
Luckily I had some advise from a church grandma one time when Nathan had been running
a fever. “Give him some acetaminophen, and then three hours later, give him some ibuprofen. Everythree hours repeat the cycle.” I looked at her blankly.
“You know, Tylenol and Advil?”“OH!” I didn’t know what they were. Isn’t it surprising that my kids are still alive? Anyway,
I told my sister-in-law to give these two medicines on the rotation. Each help bring down a fever,but by rotating them, you don’t give too much of one kind of medicine. She had the medicines. Weall do. They are in all our cabinets. They are readily available, all she needed to do was just need toapply them! Thankfully Noah’s temperature did come down, and he never had to go into the E.R.
Benadryl was available everywhere. Advil and Tylenol were in her cabinet. All that was
needed was to apply the medicine for healing.
PP#4: Images sick people, perhaps in hospitals, drug stores, etc.
The human condition is that we are all sick and dying. I’m not talking about being physically
sick, although I guess an argument can be made that right from birth we are all terminal and slowlydying. But I am talking about sick in a different way. I mean, think about it. If we are truly honestwith ourselves, we are not living fully. I mean, we know what kind of person we are. It’s not the waywe want it to be. There is that big emptiness inside. We can’t find meaning, and without meaningwe don’t have purpose. Without purpose we have lost our reason for being. We drift through life,
busy on the outside, but that nagging on the inside. We loose control of what is most important tous. We lie a lie. Our lives can become so crushing and overwhelming. What we value and love slipsthrough our fingers. We can’t stop it. Our dreams have evaporated and we realize we are half numb.
We are sick. We are not the people we yearn to be. And there is nothing we can do to heal ourselves.
“Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Why then is there no healing for
the wounds of my people?” -Jeremiah 8:22
Back in Jeremiah God looked down at His people and found them struggling to live. Oh, they
were fine physically. But they were still very sick. Something was wrong. God could see what humaneyes couldn’t. So, God speaks through Jeremiah, “Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physicianthere? Why then is there no healing for the wounds of my people?” (Jer 8:22)
Now, in the region of Gilead, there were
medicines. There were
doctors. But God is saying
that the wounds of His people were not being healed. Their wounds, you see, were not medical.
Rather they were spiritual. They were sick and dying.not medically but spiritually.
We usually talk about sin as actions that are wrong, or failings. Sins are incurred, like
trespasses or debts. They are a selfishness or disobedience. We call them wrong-doings
. Sins needto be forgiven and then wiped away.
This is certainly biblical and true. But also throughout the Bible, like in Jeremiah, God talks
about sin in a different way.as sickness, as a disease, an illness. The emptiness we feel on theinside, the stuckness we live in, shows that we don’t just commit sins, but we are also spiritually ill. Sin is a state of our being, it is the illness of being separated from God. We are sick and needhealing. We are dying and need medicine. We so desperately need a balm in our Gileads.
We don’t often think about it this way, but God does. We see it again as we come to the
Gospel of Luke. In Luke, Jesus as the Messiah and Savior, is presented as the Great Physician.
Images of Jesus as the Messiah in the Gospels
Matthew: The Great TeacherMark: The Suffering ServantLuke: The Great Physician
We’ve been reading through the Bible together during this past year, starting at Genesis. We
completed the Old Testament a couple of weeks ago with its cliff hanger. The Old Testament endswaiting and preparing for a Savior to come. So, as we turn to the New Testament, the question fromJeremiah still lingers, “Is there a balm in Gilead?” Matthew presents Jesus as the Messiah. He is thefulfillment of the Old Testament and all the teachings of the Law. Mark, we saw last week, presentsJesus as the Suffering Servant. And sure enough, this past week we journeyed with this SufferingServant through His suffering, crucifixion and death.
But today, on Easter, we come to Luke and look at Jesus again. Now Luke, interestingly
enough, was not a Jew but a Gentile. Luke is the only non-Jewish writer of the Bible. He was not oneof Jesus’ disciples, but was a close friend of the Apostle Paul.
PP#7: Image of St. Luke, with indication he was doctor.
So, Luke was a Gentile, and by training and practice Luke was a medical doctor. He was a
man of science, of education, of reason. Think about that. He’s a Gentile doctor who writes that theJew Jesus is the true Son of God and Savior of the world. Fascinating!
So Luke conducts research. He studies all the stories about Jesus. He talks to all the eye-
witnesses. He travels with Paul around the Greek world. And then he writes out his explanation forwhy Jesus is the Messiah.
And as a doctor, Luke picks up on the connection that sin is a sickness. His medical eyes sees
the connection between Jesus’ healings and His forgiveness of sins. So as Luke writes his Gospel,he frames Jesus as the Great Physician who brings healing to body and soul. In Mark we see Jesusengaged in the cosmic battle
against evil. In Luke we see Jesus also engaging in the everyday lives
of ordinary people in need.
PP#8: Image of Jesus teaching from Isaiah in the synagogue in Nazareth, subtitled,
“The spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me; He has sent meto bring good news to the oppressed, to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to thecaptives, and release to the prisoners; to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor, and the dayof vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn.” -Isaiah 61:1-2
When Jesus was back in His hometown of Nazareth, Jesus teaches in the synagogue. He turns
to Isaiah 61 and reads, “The spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me;He has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed, to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaimliberty to the captives, and release to the prisoners; to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor, and theday of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn.” Then, with everyone staring at Him, Jesussays, “Today this promise is fulfilled right in front of you!” Jesus says He is the Anointed One! AndHis calling is to bring transformation, hope and healing to the lives of ordinary people.
All the rest of Jesus’ ministry, Luke lays out, is living out this passage: He blesses the poor,
the hungry, those who weep and the excluded (6:20-23). Jesus is concerned about ordinary peoplewho are struggling, who are in need, who are sick.
And it’s not just for Jews! Luke, as a Gentile, sees that the Messiah is not just for the Jews,
but for all people. Luke includes many stories the other writers didn’t of Jesus teaching and healingamong Gentiles. And remember how Matthew, a Jew writing to other Jews, traces Jesus’ ancestryback to Abraham, the father of the Jews? Well, Luke traces Jesus’ ancestry back to Adam, the fatherof all people. Luke writes both the Gospel of Luke and the Book of Acts. In Acts, the Gospel of Jesusis taken not just around Judea, but into all the world. Jesus is the Great Physician bringing healingand new life to all people all over the world.
Luke makes sure we don’t miss that Jesus is the Great Physician, bringing healing and
wholeness to all people–Jews and Gentiles–to ordinary people who are struggling and who are sickand who are empty in their ordinary, everyday lives.
Luke: Jesus is the Great Physician bringing healing to all
1. Jesus heals the unclean and isolated leper, Luke 5:12-142. Jesus heals the paralytic both physically and spiritually, Luke 5:17-263. Jesus heals a Gentile (Roman Centurion’s servant), Luke 7:1-104. Jesus heals the unclean and bleeding woman, Luke 8:42-48
Let’s take a quick look at just one of the healing stories Luke tells about Jesus. It’s the second
story up there, Luke 5:17-26 - the story of a man who was paralyzed. His body was sick.it was notfunctioning properly. Jesus was the healing answer to his problem. Jesus could heal him. And Jesuswas near by. The problem here, however, is that they struggled getting to Jesus. Their problem isbeing able to apply Jesus’ healing power to the paralyzed man. They get creative, remember? Then,when Jesus sees the lame man, Jesus first addresses the sickness of his soul. As you hear this storyagain, notice whose faith it is that amazes Jesus.
One day, while [Jesus] was teaching, Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting near by
(they had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem); and the powerof the Lord was with Him to heal. Just then some men came, carrying a paralyzed man ona bed. They were trying to bring him in and lay him before Jesus; but finding no way to bringhim in because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and let him down with his bed throughthe tiles into the middle of the crowd in front of Jesus. When He saw their faith, He said,"Friend, your sins are forgiven you." -Luke 5:17-20
Reader: One day, while [Jesus] was teaching, Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting
near by (they had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem);
and the power of the Lord was with Him to heal. Just then some men came, carrying
a paralyzed man on a bed. They were trying to bring him in and lay him before Jesus;
but finding no way to bring him in because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and
let him down with his bed through the tiles into the middle of the crowd in front of
Jesus. When He saw their faith, He said, "Friend, your sins are forgiven you."
Whose faith did Jesus recognize? Did you catch it? “When He saw their
faith.” that of his
friends, He healed the sins of the paralytic. That’s strange! What’s going on here? Here’s the lameman, who needs healing, in both body and soul. Then there’s Jesus, who is the one who brings thehealing. What is their role? What do they do? [They take the man to Jesus.] They take the man toJesus.and are rather creative, I might add!
What is so important about that? The friends, you see, are the ones who apply the saving
power of the Great Physician to the one who needs the healing. And Jesus is impressed with them.
Well, so far, Jesus had just said that He forgave the man’s sins. I guess talk is easy. Let’s see,
Then the scribes and the Pharisees began to question, "Who is this who is speaking
blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?" Luke 5:21
Reader: Then the scribes and the Pharisees began to question, "Who is this who is speaking
blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?"
OK, that’s a clue. Let’s see, only God can forgive sins. Correct! Jesus forgives sins. Hmmm.
Perhaps that’s a clue? But maybe He’s just talking big.
When Jesus perceived their questionings, He answered them, "Why do you raise such
questions in your hearts? Which is easier, to say, 'Your sins are forgiven you,' or to say,'Stand up and walk'? But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earthto forgive sins"–He said to the one who was paralyzed–"I say to you, stand up and take yourbed and go to your home." Immediately he stood up before them, took what he had beenlying on, and went to his home, glorifying God. Amazement seized all of them, and theyglorified God and were filled with awe, saying, "We have seen strange things today." -Luke5:22-26
Reader: When Jesus perceived their questionings, He answered them, "Why do you raise such
questions in your hearts? Which is easier, to say, 'Your sins are forgiven you,' or to say,
'Stand up and walk'? But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on
earth to forgive sins"–He said to the one who was paralyzed--"I say to you, stand up
and take your bed and go to your home." Immediately he stood up before them, took
what he had been lying on, and went to his home, glorifying God. Amazement seized
all of them, and they glorified God and were filled with awe, saying, "We have seen
strange things today."
Jesus backs up His words of spiritual healing–invisible to the eye–with a physical
healing–one they can actually see and not deny. Jesus brings healing both to the body and to the innerperson. Jesus is the Great Physician.
PP#13: Images of balms, medicines and healing aids.
Is there a balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole? Is there a balm in your
Gilead?Today, on Easter, we gather together because we have heard how Luke and the others finish
their Gospels. They trace the passion and death of Jesus. The Great Physician, you see, is not justsome paid professional who offers treatment. Jesus takes our sickness and sin upon Himself andtakes it to the cross, and dies. That emptiness you feel inside, Jesus takes it. That person you knowyou are but aren’t proud of, Jesus takes it. That despair, that feeling of hopelessness, beingoverwhelmed, that defeat, Jesus takes it. Jesus comes into your life, and then He takes it all to thecross. He died for you.for your Gilead! He died for you!
Dead.the Great Physician.dead. Now what? Did the sickness win? Will death have the final
say? So today, we gather on Easter morning and ask the haunting question from Jeremiah, “Is thereno Balm in Gilead? Is there no Physician there?”
What do you say, Church? [Yes there is!] Yes! Christ is risen! [He is risen indeed!] A healing
Balm has been raised! There is Medicine! There is treatment! There is healing! The Great Physicianis not dead, but alive! He is here, right now, and He is for ordinary people in their daily lives. He isright in the middle of your Gilead. Jesus is for you, for your sickness, for your healing.
PP#14: Image of plastic Easter eggs in a basket.
I’m going to ask the ushers to pass around baskets of plastic Easter eggs. There is one for
each of you. Inside there is a little surprise.but don’t open them yet. No peeking! You can shakethem to see what it might be, but don’t peek. There is a treat inside, I promise.
We’ve been talking about spiritual spring cleaning the last few weeks.doing spring cleaning
in our lives. That has meant to really be honest and getting into that stuff we usually ignore oroverlook. We’ve been using some practices of spiritual cleaning in our lives, too. In terms of healingand wounds, I guess, it is like getting into that wound and cleaning out all the dirt and grime. Forhealing to take place, you first have to clean out the wound. That’s not a fun process. Trust me, Iknow. I’ll never forget that doctor’s office after I laid my motorcycle down on the highway. Theyhad to dig out every little piece of gravel with a wire brush.I couldn’t sit down for a week.
But once the wound is opened and cleaned out, then, and only then, can the healing balm be
applied. Then the medicine can work and bring healing.
Jesus came as the healing balm for all of the wounds and sicknesses of our lives.especially
our inner lives. Jesus was raised from the dead. He has the power to heal and forgive sins.
But don’t miss this. The medicine does no good if it is not applied! The Benadryl, the
Tylenol, the Advil do no good sitting in the cabinet. Easter is nothing if it is not applied.
Inside your plastic eggs is something to help you not miss this. Go ahead and open them up.
What’s inside? A cotton ball! See, I told you there was a surprise in there!
PP#15: Image of a cotton ball and bottle of hydrogen peroxide.
A cotton ball is no big deal, is it? It’s not medicine. It can’t heal. But you know what a cotton
ball does? It is the applicator of the medicine in the bottle to your wound. The cotton is what appliesthe remedy to the need.
There is a Balm in Gilead
to make the wounded whole; there is a balm in Gilead to heal the
sin-sick soul!” Christ is Risen.[He is risen indeed!].
But don’t miss the main point of Easter: you have to apply the balm to your life. Easter is
nothing if you don’t invite the risen Jesus into your life. It’s so easy. All you have to do is ask. Askfrom your heart. Ask Him into your heart. Ask for the healing He brings. Ask for His forgivenessof your sins. Ask for new, abundant and full life. Open your wounds in confession.clean them outthrough repentance, and then apply Jesus’ healing by inviting Him in.
Keep your cotton ball. May it remind you that you must apply Easter to your Gilead for you
PP#16: Pictures of very happy people, contented and joyous.showing what it looks like to have
It’s true, you know. The lame man walked away. People have been applying Easter, the risen
Jesus, to their lives and found Him truly to be a healing balm, ever since Jesus was raised from thedead. People have tried Jesus, and found He is, really, the Great Physician.
Video: Cardboard testimonies.
Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy (2009) 64, 1018 – 1023doi:10.1093/jac/dkp339Advance Access publication 16 September 2009Effects of interactions of antibacterial drugs witheach other and with 6-mercaptopurine on in vitro growth ofMycobacterium avium subspecies paratuberculosisManju Y. Krishnan, Elizabeth J. B. Manning and Michael T. Collins*Department of Pathobiological Sciences, Schoo
June 21 (Sunday) 14:00~ Registration 15:30~15:50 <Ocean Hall> Opening Opening Remarks: F. Peter Guengerich (Vanderbilt University School of Medicine) 15:50-16:45 Plenary Lecture <Ocean Hall> Shigeaki Kato (University of Tokyo): Nuclear vitamin D receptor-regulated expression of the human CYP27B1 gene mediates the DNA methylation/demetylation Session 1 Bioinformatics Chairs: Osamu