“In that hour he cured many of diseases and plagues and evil spirits, and on many that were blind he bestowed sight. And he answered them, ‘Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have good news preached to them.’” (Luke 7:21-22).
In today’s Gospel passage, John the Baptist (from prison) sent people to Jesus to ask “Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?” As to why John the Baptist did this, scholars have adduced several reasons; to strengthen the faith of those who he sent to ask Jesus, to be sure that he was right in pointing Jesus out as the “Lamb of God” and to indirectly appeal to Jesus to help free him from prison.
Jesus did not give a straight response, he allowed his actions to speak. Just at that very moment, Jesus was curing many people of their diseases and plagues and evil spirits and restoring sight to many who were blind.
By his actions, Jesus was practically fulfilling the ancient prophecy of Isaiah: “The spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me; he has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed, to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and release to the prisoners; to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour…” Isaiah 61:1-2.
If Jesus was not the expected one, he would not have been able to work these miracles. So he didn’t need to tell John “I am he” or “I am not he.” All he said was “Go and report my works, the blind can see again, the deaf can hear, the lame can walk, lepers are cleansed, dead are raised up, the poor have good news proclaimed to them.”
Dear friends, if actions speak louder than words, we are called to examine for ourselves today what sort of things our actions are proclaiming about us?
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, may my life be worthy of the name I bear as a Christian. Amen.
Bible Study: Isaiah 45:6-8,18,21-25, Ps. 85:9-14, Luke 7:19-23).