Tell No Man

Matthew 16:20. “Then charged He His disciples that they should tell no man that He was Jesus the Christ.”

Why would Jesus charge His disciples to tell no one Who He really was?  There are some reasons offered in two of my sources that make a great deal of sense to me.

First, He was not ready to assert His claim as Messiah yet, knowing the controversy it would cause. He made no public claim of His true identity at first, but allowed the power of His works to both speak for Him and to fulfill prophecy.

Second,He wanted people to fulfill the law by offering the testimony that Moses commanded  in Lev. 14:4, 10, and 21-22.  The proof of cleansing from leprosy was considered a Messianic  power, and should have convinced the priests that He was the Christ.

Third, He knew  that the time was not right for Him to be proclaimed King. He was not seeking popularity and public acclaim. Such would have resulted in the clamour of the mob to elevate Him, creating utter confusion and confounding His real purpose. When this kind of acclaim did happen, He got away from it (John 6:15-21).

Fourth, Jesus set an example of putting healing to the test before testimony was given of it. Any real healing will stand any kind of test.

There was a man in our church years ago who developed leukemia. This was early in the days of treating that cancer successfully.  He was very sick, and only in his 30’s or 40’s, I believe.  He and his wife had planned his funeral. There seemed to be no hope at all.

Then the pastor and some of the deacons went to his hospital room, laid hands on him, and prayed for his healing.  He was a main player in the growth of the church, and would be sorely missed.  I’m not sure, but it seems I’ve heard he was also anointed with oil.

Now, I know that pastor and most of the men involved, and I know they loved God and believed He could heal. And He did! To the amazement of everyone, the man began to improve and is still alive today, in his early 90’s. The doctors were shocked, and the story is still a favorite among those who were part of the church back then.

God is not required to heal.  We have no right to demand that He do so.  But He CAN, and when it suits His purpose, He will. There was no doubt that the man’s healing was miraculous, no doubt that his illness had been the real thing.  It was an incredible testimony to the doctors, nurses, and staff who treated him, as well as to the church family.

Jesus can still do today what He did during His ministry on earth. We need to pray more.

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4 thoughts on “Tell No Man

  1. Margie

    I was a young early teen when this man was on his death bed 106 fever not expected to make it through the night and Pastor and the deacons went to see him and did anoint him with oil and prayed faith believing…. This incident had a HUGE impact on me as a young teen to see the power of God …. no one else raise this man up to full health…. but God!

    At our church now we have a LOT of answered prayer… we use a chair that is down front at our alter and when someone is experiencing a difficulty, illness or what ever if they ask for prayer they will come down front and sit in the chair and our church family will gather around them lay hands on them, or a hand on the person in front of you and reach out to God praying for healing, etc…. Recently we had a lady diagnosed with liver cancer who is currently receiving treatment for it, but she was told by 2 doctors the cancer was also in her bladder…. we prayed over her a couple weeks ago and when the follow up testing took place they could not find a trace of it in her bladder, and the doctors were confused, but we were not…. We will also do this for a person who is not able to be there, someone will SIT in the gap for them, and we will pray for them…. It really is a special time!!! and prayers get answered!!!!

    I have never read anywhere in any of these passages when the sick asked for healing that they ever said “if it is your will” they asked faith believing and were healed! To tell the truth I never ever hear anyone use those words in our prayer sessions at our alter at church with people in the chair asking for healing…. I’ve wondered for a long time that when using the “if” word if that negates our faith…. think we’ve talked about that before…. but it’s worth taking a look at I think….

    Couldn’t let this one go, when I was one of those teens the man with leukemia’s healing had an impact on…. Praise be to God!

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    1. Thanks for your input, Margie. We just missed that incredible event, which i believe took place a year or two before we got there.

      I think “if it be Thy will” is not so much a lack of faith, but an indication of our submission to His will, whatever it may be. Even Jesus prayed in the Garden, “If it be possible, let this cup pass from Me. . .nevertheless, not My will, but Thy will be done”

      Can it indicate a lack of faith, a covering of all the bases? Sure it can. But for me, if I pray those words, I am submitting to His will even if it isn’t my own.

      Just for what it’s worth 🙂 Miss you guys, think of you so often. Sounds like you’re in a wonderful church.

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  2. Becky Frederick

    I was even younger than Margie and will always know that God can answer and heal! I knew even so young that only God could heal him! I remind myself often of God’s power by remembering this huge answer to our prayers! God is good all the time!

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