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Year of the Lord's Favour

Next, Jesus was sent to preach deliverance to the captives. He came to earth with the power and authority to free people who are in bondage through "every disease" and "every weakness" (Matthew 4:23). Matthew deliberately used the terminology of socialization to indicate the broad scope of Jesus' ministry, not its narrowness.

In this way, Jesus brings a degree of deliverance to a variety of diseases that have entangled people, whether they are the direct result of human oppression or demonic oppression. There are many types of prisoners ... and not all of them are behind bars. The almost universal problem of substance dependence enslaves many people, regardless of their income or race.

Jesus was sent to bring "insight to the blind ..." Blindness was only one of the many diseases that Jesus cured. Referring to his messianic credentials in a conversation with the disciples of John the Baptist, Jesus said: "The blind receive their sight and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, the dead are raised and the poor preach the gospel" (Matthew 11: 5).

More common than physical blindness is soul blindness. Paul wrote: “For unbelievers, whose minds have been blinded by the god of the age, so that the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of the invisible God, does not shine for them” (2 Cor. 4: 4). Jesus healed both types of blindness, and his church continues to do the same.

The Son of God was also sent to "release the tormented". Christ came to free mankind from the wages of sin and individuals from the consequences of sin and oppression by evil spirits. Oppression in the world manifests itself in many forms: economic, ethnic, political, religious, cultural and demonic.

To express love and compassion for society, we must address real-life needs: social, physical, emotional, and spiritual. Jesus came to give such people freedom, to proclaim an auspicious year of the Lord. He came to redeem and save them, to forgive their sins, to bring them out of their distress and to establish them on a new path that ultimately leads to complete redemption and deliverance when the kingdom of Christ comes in fullness.

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