A few weeks ago, people and magazines across the globe celebrated the Beattles 50th anniversary, from their first appearance in the United States. Looking back at old footage of this massive scene, called the "British Invasion", I see a mass of people screaming and crying for four ordinary lads from across the pond. Men and women (mostly women) fought one another just to get close enough to touch any one of these men. The "Fab Four" as they would later come to be called.
Would this be a sign of things to come for this young band? Yes and no. For the next ten years or so, as a band the Beattles produced some of the best music ever. According to all the music entities. Yet, what is their lasting legacy apart from the music? More on that later.
John Lennon once remarked that, "the Beattles have a bigger following than Jesus." One can imagine the furor this comment caused, but Lennon later explained his choice of words.
This got me to thinking about the woman in Matthew 9:20 who had this issue with her blood, who wanted nothing more than to be healed. As we read the account she had tried many doctors and treatments to no avail for 12 years. Then one day she heard that Jesus was passing through a area near her and said to herself, "if only I may touch the hem of His clothing then I shall be healed."
The woman got close enough to touch the clothing of Jesus and she was healed. Immediately afterwards Jesus inquired of the twelve "who touched me?" His disciples looking at the multitude of people around them and said "with all of these people reaching, screaming and shouting how can we really know 'who touched you?'" But Jesus knew.
Could the same be said for the people clamoring to touch the four men from England? If someone were to reach out and touch them, any one of them, would they be able to turn and say to that person "it was you." Doubtful. The reputation of the Beattles preceded them before they came to America and when the plane landed, we saw the reactions of the people. Mass hysteria. Jesus received such attention everywhere He set His feet. But on this particular occasion only one person was granted what they were desiring. The woman with the issue of her blood. She came to Jesus by faith. Others in the crowd wanted Jesus also. They called His name, pulled at His clothing and fought one another for positioning and yet....no other healings were recorded.
John, Paul, George and Ringo heard their names, felt the pull of the people against them and enjoyed the cries of the people. They have come and conquered America. However, could they do miracles?
The only miracle they could do was offer someone a free ticket to a concert. Highly unlikely, but doable. That was the only hope people could get from these men.
Jesus, however, said to the woman "Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace, and be healed of your disease." Calling her daughter implied of a relationship already there.
What could the Fab Four say that would imply of a relationship that is already there? Nothing.
Jesus' touch brings healing and eternal salvation. That much is evident in the entirety of the New Testament. A touch from the Beattles only brought about a moment of fleshly pleasure that would soon pass away.
The 'legacy' of Jesus is everlasting life through the work of the Cross for your sins and mine. It offers forgiveness, redemption and hope for all who believe in Him.
The legacy of the Beattles is a bunch of well received albums and number one hits and awards that will rust and decay over the course of time.
Who's touch do you clamor for?
Whom do you long to touch?