Matthew 9

All power is given unto Jesus Christ, both in heaven and in earth. Degradation and disease, demons and death are subject to His rebuke, and faith in Him is the most priceless treasure on earth (v. 2, 22, 29).

1 And he entered into a ship, and passed over, and came into his own city.

2 And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee.

3 And, behold, certain of the scribes said within themselves, This man blasphemeth.

4 And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts?

5 For whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and walk?

6 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (then saith he to the sick of the palsy,) Arise, take up thy bed, and go unto thine house.

7 And he arose, and departed to his house.

8 But when the multitudes saw it, they marvelled, and glorified God, which had given such power unto men.

9 ¶ And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose, and followed him.

10 ¶ And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples.

11 And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners?

12 But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.

13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

14 ¶ Then came to him the disciples of John, saying, Why do we and the Pharisees fast oft, but thy disciples fast not?

15 And Jesus said unto them, Can the children of the bridechamber mourn, as long as the bridegroom is with them? but the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken from them, and then shall they fast.

16 No man putteth a piece of new cloth unto an old garment, for that which is put in to fill it up taketh from the garment, and the rent is made worse.

17 Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine runneth out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both are preserved.

18 ¶ While he spake these things unto them, behold, there came a certain ruler, and worshipped him, saying, My daughter is even now dead: but come and lay thy hand upon her, and she shall live.

19 And Jesus arose, and followed him, and so did his disciples.

20 ¶ And, behold, a woman, which was diseased with an issue of blood twelve years, came behind him, and touched the hem of his garment:

21 For she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole.

22 But Jesus turned him about, and when he saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour.

23 And when Jesus came into the ruler’s house, and saw the minstrels and the people making a noise,

24 He said unto them, Give place: for the maid is not dead, but sleepeth. And they laughed him to scorn.

25 But when the people were put forth, he went in, and took her by the hand, and the maid arose.

26 And the fame hereof went abroad into all that land.

27 ¶ And when Jesus departed thence, two blind men followed him, crying, and saying, Thou Son of David, have mercy on us.

28 And when he was come into the house, the blind men came to him: and Jesus saith unto them, Believe ye that I am able to do this? They said unto him, Yea, Lord.

29 Then touched he their eyes, saying, According to your faith be it unto you.

30 And their eyes were opened; and Jesus straitly charged them, saying, See that no man know it.

31 But they, when they were departed, spread abroad his fame in all that country.

32 ¶ As they went out, behold, they brought to him a dumb man possessed with a devil.

33 And when the devil was cast out, the dumb spake: and the multitudes marvelled, saying, It was never so seen in Israel.

34 But the Pharisees said, He casteth out devils through the prince of the devils.

35 And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.

36 ¶ But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.

37 Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few;

38 Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest.

Matthew 9:1-8 – ​The Forgiver of Sins

   How inventive and ingenious is human love! Not improbably this was a young man and the others had been his schoolmates and friends for years. They had come to a steadfast faith in Jesus, and it was in response to their faith that the miracle was wrought. If only four earnest Christians would take one unbeliever or sinner in hand, we should see new miracles of grace.
   Sin lies at the root of all suffering and disease. God’s ideal is a fair and healthy body adapted to all the demands we make on it. In this case there was evidently a close connection between the man’s paralysis and some former act or acts of sin that lay heavily on conscience and heart. It was as easy for our Lord to utter one sentence as another, and the power which accompanied His utterance in the physical sphere proved that He had equal power in the spirit-world.
   His critics were perfectly right. Either He blasphemed or He was the Son of God. Note that title, Son of man. Jesus was the last Adam, the second man. See I Corinthians 15:45. —Through the Bible Day by Day

Matthew 9:9-17 – ​The Friend of Sinners

   The name Levi indicates that Matthew sprang from a priestly line. He had lost all self-respect to become the abhorred instrument of the Roman government, collecting dues on the merchandise that crossed the lake. But our Lord sees veins of gold and precious gems in most unlikely places, and He detected the apostle and evangelist in this despised publican.
   Wherever a man is found by Christ, He sets Himself to find others, and the Lord is willing to co-operate in any effort to bring others to know Him. He will sit with perfect grace among publicans and sinners, lifting them to His own pure and holy level. He is always to be found where there are sin-sick souls; and where hearts are famished for love and joy, He is with them as their bridegroom.
   But the joy of Christ will make for itself its own impression. The ancient forms will not suffice. The old skin-bottle will not contain the ferment of the new wine. How wonderfully Christ could extract lessons from familiar objects! —Through the Bible Day by Day

Matthew 9:13 – ​Among the several wonders of the loadstone, this is not the least, that it will not draw gold nor pearl, but, despising these, it draws the iron to it, one of the most inferior metals: thus Christ leaves the angels, those noble spirits, the gold and the pearl, and He comes to poor sinful man, and draws him into His embraces. (T. Watson)

Matthew 9:18-26 – ​Lord of Life and Death

   No grief appeals to Christ in vain. He always arises to follow. Let us as His disciples ever follow where He leads. We are permitted to be His fellow-workers and to help by our sympathy, prayers, and faith.
   This poor woman’s faith was very imperfect. She believed that there was virtue in His dress, as the ritualist in the emblems of His death. She cared more for her healing than for the healer. She was full of fear and trembling. But her touch was a magnificent evidence of her faith. It might be as slight as featherdown, but it was enough. Not grasping, but lightly touching!
   The incident at first fretted Jairus by its delay; but afterward it helped him. Perhaps it was permitted in order to strengthen his faith and thus prepare him to meet the tidings then upon the way to him. He can awake a girl from death as easily as her mother from sleep at morning prime. Let Jesus take the tiny hands of your children in His. Summon them to life and love! —Through the Bible Day by Day

Matthew 9:22—Thy faith hath made thee whole.

​   Wholeness and holiness are identical: the one of the body; the other of the soul. They are closely related to the word Health, and all may be procured through faith. Holiness, wholeness of heart, health—and all by faith. There are three steps to this blessed state—of wholeness of soul.
   First, we must believe that it is attainable. For we never feel morally bound to do, attempt, or choose, what we do not believe to be within our reach. But all questions on the matter are settled for evermore by such words as, “Be ye holy; for I am holy” (1 Peter 1:16); and “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind” (Matthew 22:37).
   Second, we most consecrate ourselves to God. In other words, by the help of the Holy Spirit, we must determine and resolve that we will be wholly the Lord’s. We must come to a fixed resolve to break off from every known sin; to walk, so far as we know them, in the way of God’s commandments; to be and do and suffer all his righteous will. This must be our deliberate resolve for all coming time; and if we are unable to make the resolve, through the frailty of our nature and the strength of our old sins, we must at least tell God that we are willing for this to become our unvacillating attitude.
   Third, we must believe, absolutely, that God does accept the consecration we have made, and will do all that He has promised, by infilling us with his Holy Spirit, and working in us that which is pleasing in his sight. Nay, we must not only believe that He will do it, we must ask and claim that He should do it; we must, like this woman, touch Christ and obtain his healing virtue. —Our Daily Homily

Matthew 9:27-34 – ​The Merciful Deliverer

   It is thus that the Master speaks to us: Believe ye that I am able to make you happy, though you are cut off from the light and gladness of the world? Believe ye that I am able to enrich you in poverty, strengthen you in weakness, and raise you even out of death itself, so that the barren rod may bear blossom and fruit? Believe ye that I am able to give a knowledge of God which eye hath not seen nor the heart of man conceived?
   It may be with a trembling faith that we answer, Yea, Lord. But how blessed is the soul that dares to say Yea to the Master’s challenge. Understand that there is no limit to what He will do for you, if only you will trust Him. The measure of His giving is according to the measure of your faith, and the measure of your faith will be according to the measure of your abandonment to Him. Spread abroad His fame. Pharisees hate Him, but demons flee. —Through the Bible Day by Day

​Matthew 9:29 – Faith never goes home with an empty basket. (Elijah P. Brown)

Matthew 9:29 – ​So it ever is. Christ’s mercy, like water in a vase, takes the shape of the vessel that holds it. On the one hand, His grace is infinite and “unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ” (Ephesians 4:7), with no limitation but His own unlimited fullness; on the other hand, the amount we practically receive from that inexhaustible store is determined by the measure and the purity and the intensity of our faith. On His part there is no limit but infinity; on our side the limit is our capacity, and our capacity is settled by our desire. His word to us ever is, “Open thy mouth wide, and I will fill it” (Psalm 81:10). “Be it unto thee even as thou wilt” (Matthew 15:28). (McLaren)

Matthew 9:35-38 – ​Planning the Harvest
   A new chapter in our Lord’s ministry opens at this point. As He walked amid the crowded towns and villages of Galilee, His heart was deeply moved. His was the shepherd’s nature, which, ever forgetful of self, expends its all for the flock. Jesus loved the poor people tenderly—those vast multitudes were a scattered, harassed flock. Fainted has the meaning of being cast panting on the ground. It was as though they could not move another step. Let us—like our Master—behold, pity, intercede, do our best to send out laborers, and go ourselves, even to a cross, if only we may save. —Through the Bible Day by Day