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Rays of Light Bible Lessons by Keith Holder

JESUS HEALS PETER'S MOTHER-IN-LAW

Mark 1:29-31 And forthwith, when they were come out of the synagogue, they entered into the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John. But Simon's wife's mother lay sick of a fever, and anon they tell Him of her. And He came and took her by the hand, and lifted her up; and immediately the fever left her, and she ministered unto them.

Although Matthew records the healing of Peter's wife's mother right after the healing of the centurion's servant, both Mark and Luke have this incident following Jesus casting the unclean spirit out of the man at the Jewish synagogue. Mark writes that as soon as this miraculous incident was completed, Jesus and His disciples, Peter, Andrew, James, and John came out of the synagogue, and, according to both Matthew and Luke, went directly into Peter's house. Mark says it was also the home Andrew, Peter's brother.

When they entered the home of this family, they were immediately told that Peter's mother-in-law lay sick of a fever. Luke describes her condition in more severe terms as a great fever. The fact that Luke was a noted physician lends even more credence to the severity of her sickness. Due to, what seems to be a critical sickness, anon, meaning immediately, they tell Him of her. No doubt they had witnessed first hand, or had learned from one that had witnessed the casting out of the unclean spirit from the demonic man in the temple. Realizing the power demonstrated by Jesus, they were relying on Him to heal Simon's wife's mother from the disease that brought on her great fever.

Jesus came into her presence, took her by the hand, and lifted her up; and immediately the fever left her. Matthew said He touched her hand, and the fever left her, and Luke wrote that He stood over her, and rebuked the fever; and it left her. Where in this particular instance, as well as on numerous other occasions, can medical technology explain the healing power of a mere touch or a verbal rebuke heal one that has a physical sickness, disease, malformation, etc.? To this rhetorical question, the obvious answer is nowhere, at no time, and by no one but the Son of God, Jesus Christ, and all that had this miraculous power bestowed to them by Jesus or imparted to them by His apostles. Although certain men and women of all ages have claimed this power, there is no instance that their healing power ever performed such a miracle that could not be explained by trickery, allusion, or fraudulent collusion with others to deceive. Miraculously, Jesus healed Peter's wife's mother, and, according to Luke's account, immediately she arose and ministered unto them. She was, not partially, but wholly healed. There was no recovery period. She was able to immediately serve them, probably by preparing a meal for them.

One can hardly read these verses without commenting on the fact that Peter was married - he had a wife as well as a mother-in-law, whom he provided for, as this passage indicates. Although we are not told of the marital arrangements of other apostles, except Paul, marriage did not prevent Christ from selecting him as one of His apostles. Rather, Peter played an extremely important part in preaching the gospel of salvation during his life on earth as a chosen messenger of Christ. The fact that the Roman Catholics chose to select him as the first head of their "church" seems a bit presumptuous since their doctrine forbids Popes from being married, although they are supposedly his successors. It seems preposterous that Jesus saw nothing wrong with this apostle being married, and yet this "religious" sect considers the honorable rite of marriage as unsuitable for their "spiritual leader."

Later that evening, following Jesus' healing of Peter's mother-in-law, the word of His miraculous healing power seemed to spread throughout the city, and they brought unto Him all that were diseased, and them that were possessed with devils. And it seems that many were interested in witnessing Jesus power to heal the sick, and all the city was gathered together at the door. And He healed many that were sick of divers diseases, and cast out many devils; and suffered not the devils to speak, because they knew Him (Vss. 32-34). The miracles performed by Jesus always demonstrated His compassion for those that were sick and afflicted in any way. Although He performed miracles during His ministry on earth as infallible proof that He was the promised Savior, He never demonstrated this God-given power to receive acclaim from mankind. Let us learn, that we too have Christian duties to perform, but the glory is to be given to God.