Mark 7:31-37 (NASB)
³¹Again He went out from the region of Tyre, and came through Sidon to the Sea of Galilee, within the region of Decapolis.
³²They brought to Him one who was deaf and spoke with difficulty, and they implored Him to lay His hand on him.
³³Jesus took him aside from the crowd, by himself, and put His fingers into his ears, and after spitting, He touched his tongue with the saliva; ³⁴and looking up to heaven with a deep sigh, He said to him, “Ephphatha” that is, “Be opened!”
³⁵And his ears were opened, and the impediment of his tongue was removed, and he began speaking plainly.
³⁶And He gave them orders not to tell anyone; but the more He ordered them, the more widely they continued to proclaim it.
³⁷They were utterly astonished, saying, “He has done all things well; He makes even the deaf to hear and the mute to speak.”
It was a long journey from the region of Tire and Sidon on the west coast to the area southeast of the Sea of Galilee, which was called the Decapolis. The people in this area were largely pagan. But Jesus was well known to many there. After all, he had healed a demon possessed man there before, who from that moment on told everyone about Jesus (Mark 5:1-20).
Because people there know of Jesus’ power, they now bring a man to Him with whom they do not know what to do at all.
He is deaf and also almost dumb (Mark 7:32). So this man cannot be reached for what people want to say to him and he in turn cannot reach others because he is unable to make himself understood.
As a result, he is in almost complete isolation. It is an impregnable fortress. There is no access. He can only absorb something with his eyes. Jesus makes use of that possibility when He wants to enter the life of this pathetic man.
He performs various actions that this deaf mute can see and feel. He also ensures that this man can fully focus on what is happening to him. There are no other people. He is not distracted (Mark 7:33).
Then Jesus puts his fingers in this man’s ears.
These ears are, as it were, pierced (Cf. Psalm 40:7). By spitting and touching the man’s tongue (Mark 7:33), Jesus makes it clear that this healing literally comes from Him. But Jesus Himself receives the ability to heal again from his Father in heaven. That is why He looks up and sighs pleadingly (Mark 7:34). Only after all this can a breach be made in the wall of enclosure behind which this man was imprisoned: Ephphata, that is, be opened (Mark 7:34, 35)!
Jesus finds access with those who are out of reach for us. Isn’t that a nice, encouraging assurance? He does indeed make everything well (Mark 7:37; The fulfillment of Isaiah 35:5,6).
▪︎ Thank God for making everything that is now imperfect, perfectly new.
▪︎ Thank God that He also reestablishes contact between people.