Luke 13:10-17 (NIV) On a Sabbath Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues,  and a woman was there who had been crippled by a spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not straighten up at all.  When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, “Woman, you are set free from your infirmity.”  Then he put his hands on her, and immediately she straightened up and praised God.  Indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, the synagogue leader said to the people, “There are six days for work. So come and be healed on those days, not on the Sabbath.”  The Lord answered him, “You hypocrites! Doesn’t each of you on the Sabbath untie your ox or donkey from the stall and lead it out to give it water?  Then should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free on the Sabbath day from what bound her?”  When he said this, all his opponents were humiliated, but the people were delighted with all the wonderful things he was doing.
This woman [referenced above] was bent over, bowed down, completely overcome with an infirmity. She could in no way reverse her situation on her own. She was unable to lift herself or straighten herself up.
She was oppressed and depressed by the enemy, and even though she was a “daughter of Abraham,” part of God’s chosen, she still found herself in a place of bondage by Satan (no one is exempt from attacks of the enemy).
What is oppression? It is defined as a cruel exercise of [unjust] authority or power, a sense of being weighed down in body or mind, to burden spiritually or mentally. And what is depression? It is defined as a pressing down, sadness, inactivity, difficulty in thinking or concentration, and/or feelings of dejection and hopelessness.
What are the things that bind us, oppress us, depress us and weigh us down? What is that “thing” that is crippling you and holding you back? What is causing you to not walk up-rightly? Are you not able to straighten up on your own?
The enemy’s objective is to steal, kill and destroy. It is Satan’s good pleasure to cause you to not walk uprightly. Why? Because no good thing will the LORD withhold from those who walk uprightly, those that are made complete and entire in Jesus.
Psalm 84:11 (NKJV) For the LORD God is a sun and shield; The LORD will give grace and glory; No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.
There are several key elements that stand out and are important to look at in this account from the 13th chapter of Luke.
*Jesus saw this woman. He had compassion on her.
But Jesus sees you too, exactly where you are, right smack in the middle of the bondage that is weighing you down, crippling you and causing you not to be able to straighten up. He has compassion for you. He loves you too much to let you stay that way. He desires that you would be free.
*Jesus called this woman to himself. He invited her to come to Him. He called her to come “forward,” out of her past.
He is calling you to come closer to Himself. He is inviting you to let Him change your situation. But you have to accept His invitation and make the necessary effort, the steps towards Him. Yes, those steps may feel nearly impossible when you are being so weighed down, crippled and bound. But He says if you will draw close to Him, He will, in turn, draw close to you (Reference James 4:8). He will not force you to come to Him; it is up to you. You have to make the decision to walk away from the past.
*Jesus spoke to this woman, “You are set free.” He proclaimed her release date from her bondage. He declared that she would be made free, healed and whole.
There is POWER in the WORD. I have to repeat this, because you need to get this: There is POWER in the WORD! Open up the Bible and allow Him to speak freedom and restoration to you. He has come to set the captives free. He has declared that it is His will for you too to be set free, healed and whole. He wants you to walk uprightly.
*Jesus touched her, immediately her situation changed, and she praised God.
Jesus’ touch changes everything. Surrender to Him, follow His instruction, give to Him the spirit of heaviness that you have been carrying, and He will give you a garment of praise (Reference Isaiah 61:3). Jesus will never put anything ill-fitting on you (Reference Matthew 11:28-30).
Be prepared; just like in the account of this Daughter of Abraham, the enemy will likely surround you with negative and hypocritical voices. Learn to tune these out. Continue to walk in the truth. Once you step into your freedom you will realize the weight of the burden that bent you so low. There is no going back. Jesus is the Way, the Truth, the Life (Reference John 14:6) and whom He sets free is free indeed (Reference John 8:36).
Psalm 145:14 (NLT) The LORD helps the fallen and lifts those bent beneath their loads.
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