As I count my blessings this Thanksgiving, I am praising God for who He is and what He has done this past year. Ironically, one of the highlights occurred when I went through major surgery that required six days in the hospital. During that time, my two daughters tag-teamed so that one of them was with me 24/7. My predominant memory of that time is not the pain, or the tubes, or the needles, but the loving way Morrow and Rachel-Ruth cared for me.
I. His Touch Clarifies
Read Matthew 9:27-31 and 20:29-34.
- List the similarities between the two stories.
- List the differences between the two stories.
- Why do you think Jesus questioned the men in both stories?
- What are some reasons that a blind person would not want to see?
- What do you need clarity about concerning: Your marriage? Your family? Your job or career? Your church? His truth?
- If you need clarity, what are some lessons you can learn from the men in these stories?
- How do the following verses confirm His touch that clarifies: Psalm 119:18, Luke 24:27-49, James 1:5?
II. His Touch Cleanses
Read Matthew 8:1-3.
- Describe leprosy as you understand it.
- Since Jesus could have healed the man with just a word, why do you think He touched him?
- How long do you think it had been since the leper had felt a human touch? See Leviticus 13:45-46.
- What could the physical disease of leprosy represent spiritually? Read Psalm 38:3, 51:2; Isaiah 6:5-7.
- How do we receive His healing touch that cleanses? See 1 John 1:7-9, Acts 2:36-38, Hebrews 9:23-28.
- When did you receive His touch that cleanses? If you can’t remember a specific time, how can you be sure you are cleansed?
III. His Touch Changes
Read Matthew 8:14-15.
- Describe the difference His touch made.
- Did Peter or his mother-in-law ask Jesus to heal her? (See also Luke 4:38-39.) What does this mean to you?
- What changes can Jesus make in a person’s life? Read Mark 5:35-42; Luke 5:17-26; John 1:12, 3:16, 5:25; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11.
- What change in your life do you think is beyond Jesus’ ability or power to bring about?
IV. His Touch Calms
Read Matthew 17:1-8.
- What were the disciples afraid of? How was their fear similar to the Israelites in Exodus 20:18-19?
- What difference did His personal touch make to Peter, James and John in Matthew 17:1-7? To the woman in Mark 5:25-34?
- How does Hebrews explain this difference in 12:18-24? 10:19-22?
- What does Jesus promise in John 14:27? 16:33?
- What are you afraid of? Who are you afraid of? Why? Would you ask Jesus for His touch that calms the fearful heart?
V. His Touch Cares
- Describe the scene in Luke 18:15-17.
- Read Luke 14:7-14. While it’s obvious that Jesus cared about and loved little children, who also could they represent?
- Give phrases from the following verses that indicate Jesus touched people because He cared about them: Matthew 9:35-36, 14:13-14, 15:29-38, 20:34; Mark 1:40-42.
- Who do you need to touch in Jesus’ name? See 2 Corinthians 1:3-5.
VI. His Touch Commissions
- Describe John’s circumstances when Jesus touched him in Revelation 1:9-18.
- What was John commissioned to do? Read Revelation 1:19.
- Describe Saul’s circumstances when he also was touched. See Acts 9:1-19.
- What was Saul, who became Paul, commissioned to do in Acts 26:15-18?
- Describe Mary Magdalene’s circumstances in John 20:1-17 when she was embraced by the Risen Lord.
- What was Mary commissioned to do in John 20:17-18?
- What are your present circumstances?
If Jesus has touched you in any way, you’ve been commissioned. What is your commission? Put Matthew 28:18-20 in your own words, as it relates to your own life.
Who do you know who needs a fresh touch from Jesus? Someone who needs His clarity, His cleansing, His change, His calm, and/or His care? This Thanksgiving, would you thank Him for His touch in your life by obeying His commission, and extending His touch to someone else?