Matthew 8: Bible Study Guide


Matthew 8: Worship Guide/ 40-BSG-8A, (Matthew 8:1-4)/ Theme: the King’s Credentials – His Healing Power! Hymn: The Great Physician now is Near, (SDAH 254).

Exploration: Leprosy in the OT – (Num 5:2; Lev 13:1-46; 14:1-922:4; Dt 24:8-9; 2 Kings 7:3)/ The healing of Leprosy (2 Kings 5:1, 14; Mt 8:2-3; Mk 1:40-41; Lk 17:12-15)                                                                                                     

Reflection: In this chapter we see the King’s Credentials: His Healing Power! There are many themes here, but for the purpose of our ‘Worship Hour’ this morning, let us focus our attention on the subject of Leprosy. Leprosy was the most terrible disease, greatly feared, in OT times, and the day of Jesus. The leper was considered utterly unclean—physically and spiritually. Lepers had to wear torn clothes, bare their heads, and cry, “Unclean, Unclean”  (Lev. 13:45). A leaper was judged dead—the living dead. Thus, he was banished as an outcast, totally ostracized from society (Lev. 13:46). He could not live within the walls of any city; his dwelling had to be outside the city gates. He was thought to be polluted, incurable by any human means whatsoever. No person would jeopardize his or her ritual purity of health by coming in close contact with a Leaper, much less touch them. What amazes me in this amazing story is this: Jesus not only healed the leper, He touched him.

Devotional Implication: In last night’s devotion, we touched on “the Storms of Life!” (Mt 7:26-27). I think Leprosy was one of the greatest storm, the greatest trial in the days of Jesus. Imagine the anguish and heartbreak of the leper; imagine the rejection, the scorn and shame; imagine the emotional and mental pain, being completely cut off from family, friends and society.

Now, this is the first healing miracle performed by Jesus in Matthew. Mathew’s intention is to establish  that Jesus of Nazareth is indeed the King of the Jews, the long awaited Messiah! In Matthew 1-2, we saw the King’s Arrival; In Matthew 3-4, we saw the King’s Anointing (Baptism); and the Testing; In Matthew 5-7, we saw the King’s Agenda: the policies governing members of the Kingdom of Heaven. But the Jews still had questions on their minds: Could this One be the Messiah? If Yes, how? Can He deliver? Can He solve our problems? Now, there is a crucial point here to be made here. In healing the Leper, Jesus Christ proved at least two things – 1. He proved Himself to be God! Remember, the Jews knew that no one could cure a leper but God (2 Kings 5:7); 2. He proved Himself to be the Messiah, (the Savior of the world). He not only pronounced the leper cured, as the priests did; He cleansed the leper. He took the man’s leprosy (sin) away; He cleansed the man thoroughly and completely. In like manner, He can clean/ heal you today – for “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Heb. 13:8).

The Gospel’s Voice: This section is written as if God were speaking directly to you—Because He does. What does the LORD say to me this morning? My son, anyone who is determined to find cure in Jesus, shall find it. He is the Great Physician! He can completely heal your physical leprosy (Ex. 15:26; Ps. 103:2-5). When Christ died on the Cross of Calvary, “He Himself took your infirmities and bore your sicknesses.” (Mt 8:17). He can completely heal your spiritual leprosy –sin (Isa. 1:18; Jn 3:14-15; Acts 10:38; 1 Jn 1:9). No one who sincerely seeks His help will be turned away (Jn 6:37). What burden do you have this morning? What is your specific leprosy? Don’t try to hide it! Remember, “He who covers his transgressions will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes his sins will obtain mercy.” (Proverbs 28:13, AMP). Come to Me now for healing! Would you?

My Desire: By God’s grace, I want to – 1. Believe the healing power of Jesus/ 2. Bring all the leprosy of my sins to Him/ 3. Pray for someone who is sick on this day, and share with them this amazing Jesus of Nazareth.  

Have A Blessed Day: “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed.” (Isaiah 53:5, NKJV)

Worship Through Singing: The Great Physician now is Near, (SDAH 254).

  1. The Great Physician now is Near, The sympathizing Jesus; He speaks the drooping heart to cheer, Oh! hear the voice of Jesus.
  2. [Refrain] — Sweetest note in seraph song, Sweetest name on mortal tongue; Sweetest carol ever sung, Jesus, blessed Jesus.
  3. Your many sins are all forgiven, Oh! hear the voice of Jesus; Go on your way in peace to heaven, And wear a crown with Jesus.
  4. All glory to the dying Lamb! I now believe in Jesus; I love the blessed Savior’s name, I love the name of Jesus.
  5. His name dispels my guilt and fear, No other name but Jesus; Oh! how my soul delights to hear, The charming name of Jesus.