THE New Testament of the Bible tells us of the multitudes who thronged Christ Jesus as he preached and healed. But why did they follow him? Probably crowds gathered then for the same reasons they do now. Some people have nothing else to do or are mildly curious. There may even be a few with a dishonest or a malicious purpose.
Many came to Jesus to be healed. We read, ``Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick.''1 The joy felt by parents whose children had been made whole and by children whose parents had been restored to health, and by untold others, must have been indescribable. Certainly nothing on that scale has happened since then.
But was there an even deeper attraction? Might some have been drawn by the ideas Jesus taught even more than by hope for health? The Master said, ``Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.''2 Is it possible that those who were healed had been stirred through his Christly presence and sublime teachings to a deep desire for the peace and holiness he expressed?
Beyond the novelty of a crowd, even beyond the human yearning for health, wasn't it the joy of feeling the kingdom of God, of eternal truth, within them that many sought in those days of dusty roads and primitive communication? And it is the same magnificent truth the sick must seek in this day of high technology in order to be healed spiritually. Truth cannot change. Nor can the pure motive for seeking truth change. Spiritual healing in its most profound sense is gained by those who yearn to know the reality of God and man. It is a byproduct of spiritual awakening.
What is this awakening? It's a growing perception of the Biblical truth that perfect God is the Maker of man and that man is the child of God, the perfect spiritual likeness of his creator. This perception comes to those who seek truth meekly.