The Hands of the Holy One

You can can glean ample information from someone’s hands. The hands of a mechanic will differ from those of a seamstress; the hands of a gardener will differ from those of a welder. But no matter your profession or obsession, your hands must be useful to the Lord.

Jesus’ hands were magnificent.

In his hometown of Nazareth, Jesus’ teachings were met with skepticism.

“Where did this man get these things? What is the wisdom given to him? How are such mighty works done by his hands?” (Mark 6:2).

The mighty works done by his hands were miracles of healing. These were undeniable. In Capernaum, a day’s journey from Nazareth, Jesus healed a man with an unclean spirit (Mark 1:21-26), and the resulting fame spread all over (Mark 1:27, 28). In Capernaum he healed Simon’s mother-in-law (Mark 1:29-34), cleansed a leper (Mark 1:40-45), gave a paralytic the ability to walk (Mark 2:1-12), and restored a man’s withered hand (Mark 3:1-6). Here he gave a woman relief from a decade-long ailment (Mark 5:25-34), and gave a dead child back to her father (Mark 5:23, 35-43).

Yet his neighbors could not get over what his hands had been trained to do. “Is this not the carpenter?” they asked. They knew his mother, his brothers, and his sisters. His hands were those of a skilled craftsmen, not those of a “holy man.” Instead of belief, they took offense.

The Nazarene carpenter had a new profession, the Great Physician (Luke 4:23). His hands were healing ones. Note carefully the compassion that Jesus demonstrates with his hands. The leprous was to be put out of the camp (Numbers 5:2). This contagious disease was controlled by quarantine. A leprous person could go the remainder of their lifetime without human touch. Jesus was “moved with pity” and “stretched out his hand and touched him” (Mark 1:41).

Jesus “went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil” (Acts 10:38). His hands were not idle, but in kindness, were deployed for man’s benefit.

These same skilled, gentle, and powerful hands had nails driven through them. The same hands which removed the curse of leprosy, and held formerly diseased and dead children, held the Lord of Glory to the accursed tree (Galatians 3:13).

But this also was an act of love, a mighty act of healing. The nails really didn’t hold Jesus to the cross. The one who controlled nature, time, disease, and death, could certainly overcome his creation’s attempt on his life. When Jesus confessed, “I am he,” the band of soldiers assembled to arrest him fell to the ground (John 18:6). No one takes Jesus’ life from him, but he lays it down of his own accord (John 10:18).

In agony, he allowed his body to be broken, his breath to be taken, and his blood to be spilled. His hands held him to that cross so that the Father would be glorified and so that man could be forgiven.

His hands speak of his perfect love and selflessness.

Your hands might hold children or handle mail, they might make loans or organize books, they might change oil or stock shelves. Whatever they do, make sure they do it to the glory of God. Have compassionate hands that serve others.

What do your hands reveal about you?

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