This is a topic that has held quite a bit of fascination for me, since I have been keenly interested in studying the healings and deliverance’s the Lord Jesus Christ performed during His ministry. These cities which are the subject of the Lord Jesus rebuke, have been called the “Evangelical Triangle”, since they were fairly close together and where the Lord spent much of His time ministering. http://www.kairos2.com/a_town_cursed_by_jesus.htm
What seems to beg the question then, why did the Lord rebuke them so strenuously? In studying a bit about these cities, it seems they were at the particular place in Israel which had been centers of idolatry, and even in the Lord’s day were still steeped in much unbelief which goes hand in hand with idolatry. For example, in Bethsaida, during archaeological excavations in recent times, a Medusa was found in the ruins of the Synagogue there. In any case, when we study the healing of the blind man that Jesus performed in Mark 8: 22-26, (shown below), the scriptures made a point of mentioning it was done in Bethsaida. Notice, this is one of the few places mentioned in the bible, where even the Mighty Power of Jesus was hindered in performing a healing. Please notice that Jesus took the blind man and led him out of the town (of Bethsaida), before attempting to perform the healing miracle. Interesting, don’t you think? Then, finally, after the second attempt at healing, when the man’s sight was fully restored….Jesus sent him away to his house, with the admonition to not to go back into Bethsaida, or to tell it to any of the town’s people! Why?! Do you think just perhaps it was because the man may have lost his healing due to the unbelief and idolatry that was so rampant there apparently? Jesus never did anything without a reason. Now, the bible doesn’t exactly spell it out for us in detail, but we are left to go into the context of other scriptures for clues…why, Jesus would have been hindered in performing a healing in Bethsaida, and….that He knew ahead of time that He was going to have a problem with the healing and that’s why He lead the man out of Bethsaida before even attempting it. Then, afterward, sending the man away from Bethsaida with the admonition not to even tell anyone there. That’s pretty serious!
I believe all this points to the fact that even Jesus couldn’t heal in many cases because of the unbelief of the people. This should tell us something about the seriousness of unbelief and how it hinders the Lord from performing many beneficial blessings in OUR LIVES, including healing, perhaps!
” But Jesus, said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, but in his own country, and among his own kin, and in his own house.
And he could there do no mighty work, save that he laid his hands upon a few sick folk, and healed them.
And he marvelled because of their unbelief. And he went round about the villages, teaching. Mark 6: 4-6
“Then He began to denounce the cities in which most of His miracles had taken place, because they did not repent. 21“Woe to you Chorazin! Woe to you Bethsaida! For if the miracles having taken place in you had taken place in Tyre and Sidon, then they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. I say to you, in the day of judgment it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon than for you.
And you, Capernaum, will not be exalted to heaven, but will be brought down to Hades! For if the miracles having taken place in you had taken place in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I say to you that in day of judgment it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom than for you.” Luke 10: 20-24
” And he cometh to Bethsaida; and they bring a blind man unto him, and besought him to touch him.
And he took the blind man by the hand, and led him out of the town; and when he had spit on his eyes, and put his hands upon him, he asked him if he saw ought.
And he looked up, and said, I see men as trees, walking.
After that he put his hands again upon his eyes, and made him look up: and he was restored, and saw every man clearly.
And he sent him away to his house, saying, Neither go into the town, nor tell it to any in the town. Mark 8:22-26
One final point I would like to reiterate is that there are indeed places in the earth that are so evil, idolatrous, and steeped in unbelief, that even Christians are going to have problems with their ministries there. If the Lord Jesus Christ had problems with these type cities when He walked the face of this earth, then there is no reason to imagine that Christians in this hour and day would not have the same hindrances.