And he came¹ and took² her by the hand,
and lifted³ her up;
and immediately⁴ the fever left⁵ her,
and she ministered⁶ unto them.
¹) Approached her, drew near to her
²) Held fast
³) Caused to rise up
⁴) Straightway, forthwith
⁵) Going away or depart
⁶) Served, i.e. supply food and necessities of life
From other translations:
And He went up to her and took her by the hand and raised her up; and the fever left her, and she began to wait on them. [AMP] And he came and took her by the hand and lifted her up, and the fever left her, and she began to serve them. [ESV] He went to her, took her hand, and raised her up. No sooner had the fever left than she was up fixing dinner for them. [MSB] And he came and took her by the hand, and lifted her up; and immediately the fever left her, and she ministered unto them. [KJV] So he went to her, took her hand and helped her up. The fever left her and she began to wait on them. [NIV] He went to her bedside, and as he took her by the hand and helped her to sit up, the fever suddenly left, and she got up and prepared a meal for them. [NLT] So He came and took her by the hand and lifted her up, and immediately the fever left her. And she served them. [NKJV]
Now let us see what this verse is telling us.
And he came and took her by the hand
Rather, “And advancing, He took her,” &c.
Luke, the beloved physician, again is very specific: “And He stood over her.”
and lifted her up
This act of condescension, most felt doubtless by Peter, is recorded only by Mark.
and immediately the fever left her,
and she ministered unto them
Preparing their sabbath-meal: in token both of the perfectness and immediateness of the cure, and of her gratitude to the glorious Healer.
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It turns out that it is not in vain to appeal to the Lord Jesus.
When they have told Him about Peter’s mother-in-law’s illness, Jesus goes with them to the room where this woman is lying on bed.
He takes her by the hand and raises her up. And the action of Jesus works faster than any medicine. The fever is gone immediately. Entirely gone!
Another miracle in which Jesus’ omnipotence is revealed. But also a miracle, in which He shows his mercy.
We don’t know more than that this woman is Peter’s mother-in-law. She is and will remain nameless. Maybe she was just a woman like all other women back then, we don’t know that either, but to the Savior it makes no difference. You don’t have to be “someone”, you don’t have to be “important” to be able, or allowed to go to the King of kings.
Jesus sees her (like us) as a creature of His Father, in dire need of His help. Without Him we cannot come to life.
That thought alone fills Him with compassion.
He puts His omnipotence at the service of His mercy.
And the fever is gone!
Jesus is still like that today.
▪︎ Are you a miserable person?
▪︎ Are you poor in spirit?
▪︎ Are you someone who is bowed down?
▪︎ Are you paralyzed by the fever of sin?
There is counsel with Jesus. Commit yourself to Him.
And how does it continue with Peter’s mother-in-law?
History tells that too. She doesn’t stay in bed for a while. Someone who has dealt with a fever needs some time to regain strength. But that is not necessary in this case. By the miracle of the Lord Jesus this woman immediately regained all her strength. And thus she is able to get up immediately and go to work.
She is going to serve Jesus and His disciples. In this context, this means that she will provide a meal.
Because of her illness, it seemed there would not be a normal meal. But that is also different. Peter’s mother-in-law may use the restored health and strength, to serve the Lord. And she does this entirely on her own initiative, without needing to be persuaded to do so. It’s a love service. Emerging very spontaneously from a grateful heart. That’s how it goes, right?
“What shall I return to the Lord for all his benefits shown to me?”
Do you pay attention to the order? First there was healing. Then there is serving. She couldn’t do anything before. There seem to be people who think they can serve God without receiving first (spiritual) healing.
However, the Lord does not appreciate such kind of service.
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