The Scriptorium

Drawing Power

Whatever Jesus did, it got results. Matthew 4.24, 25

Matthew 4: First Steps (6)

Pray Psalm 115.1-3.
Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us,
But to Your name give glory,
Because of Your mercy,
Because of Your truth.
Why should the Gentiles say,
“So where is their God?”
But our God is in heaven;
He does whatever He pleases.

Sing joyfully Psalm 115.1-3.
(Plainfield: Nothing but the Blood of Jesus)
Not to us, O God, not us, but unto Your Name give glory!
For Your love and faithfulness, ever to Your Name be glory!
Why should the nations cry, "Where is their God on high?"
You rule us, Lord, on high: Ever to Your Name be glory!

Read Matthew 4.1-25; meditate on verses 24, 25.
Prepare.
1. What does Matthew mean by Jesus’ “fame”? How does His fame spread today?

2. What was the result of Jesus’ faithful ministry in His Personal Mission Field?

Meditate.
Our text should cause us to ponder the times we’re going through: Sick people, diseased people, people who are frightened, people who have no hope – desperate people of all sorts flocked in great numbers to the faithful witness of good works and true words. They came by their own strength, or were brought by friends. And when they came tot where Jesus was, He did not disappoint: “He healed them.”

Jesus’ ministry in Galilee was not restricted to Jews. People from Syria, Decapolis (the ten cities east of the Jordan between the Sea of Galilee and the Dead Sea), and “beyond the Jordan” among the Gentiles – people from all over came to Jesus. He received them, spoke Good News to them, and healed their diseases. Thus He shows us the power of a faithful witness.

No wonder “the fame” of Jesus spread rapidly throughout that region. People are made to know and enjoy God and His goodness. Sin has blighted the souls and lives of all people, even those who are not aware of it. Jesus came to restore the world to that good and upright condition in which God made it (Gen. 1.31; Eccl. 7.29; Jn. 3.16; 2 Cor. 5.17-21), and when people realize this is what Jesus is all about, they flock to Him in great multitudes.

Have we been sending wrong signals to the world about Jesus? Have we conveyed a false understanding of what Jesus is about, and what He can do? At this time, when so many people pass their days under a pall of uncertainty and dread, we who, like Peter and Andrew and James and John, have left all to follow Jesus, need to make sure our witness is what the Lord intends. What opportunities for doing good works and speaking true words are before us today? How can we cause the fame of Jesus and the Good News of His Kingdom to come to the attention of the people we know? We may realistically expect that, if we bring our work in our own Personal Mission Fields into line with what Jesus did in His, dramatic and positive and God-honoring results will ensue.

Reflect.
1. Would you say the fame of Jesus is spreading throughout your Personal Mission Field? Explain.

2. What can you do to make sure that you are available and ready each day to be a witness for the Lord Jesus Christ? What might you expect if you do?

3. How can believers encourage one another to be more faithful in our witness in our own Personal Mission Field?

Since as then “his fame went out into Syria,”
so now into the whole world. And they indeed ran together when they heard that he healed demon-possessed people. And you, after having much more and greater experience of his power, do you not rouse yourself and run? John Chrysostom (344-407), The Gospel of Matthew, Homily 14.3

Use me today, Lord, for the fame of Jesus Christ, as I…

Pray Psalm 115.9-18.
In a time like this – indeed, at all times – we need to remember that God is sovereign, that He does all things well, works all things together for good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose, and that He works good through those who know Him to show His love to the world. Pray that He will use you thus today.

Sing Psalm 115.9-18.
Psalm 115.9-18 (Plainfield: Nothing but the Blood of Jesus)
All who trust in Jesus yield – ever to His Name be glory! –
find in Him their help and shield – ever to Your Name be glory!
O Israel, trust the Lord!  He helps us evermore!
Fear Him obey His Word: Ever to Your Name be glory!

Blessings from our gracious Lord – ever to Your Name be glory –
will attend us evermore – ever to Your Name be glory!
Bless all who fear You, Lord, all who obey Your Word,
all who Your Name adore: Ever to Your Name be glory!

Grant us, Savior, great increase – ever to Your Name be glory!
Bless us with eternal peace – ever to Your Name be glory!
Heaven and earth are Yours; let every soul adore
and bless You evermore: Ever to Your Name be glory!

T. M. Moore

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Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. All psalms for singing adapted from
The Ailbe Psalter. All quotations from Church Fathers from Ancient Christian Commentary Series, General Editor Thomas C. Oden (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2006). All psalms for singing are from The Ailbe Psalter (available by clicking here).

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in Essex Junction, VT.
Books by T. M. Moore