And Jesus went with him; and much people followed him, and thronged him.…
Touch is the principle of all the senses. Perhaps, also, I shall be right, if I say that it is the most subtle of all the senses. There is no sensation without touch; sight is touch; fragrance is touch; we give that name to what is the sense of resistance; but all things are known to us and are related to us by touch. Touch is the internal sensitive principle — it is the principle of communication, and of reception, and of translation. We are told that particles are constantly floating off to touch the sensitive body, to bid the door of sensation spring open; and I think you must have felt that while those avenues are touched by their proper affinities, there are other senses within which are not touched, and never awakened, but which might own and yield to the appropriate key. Touch is, to me, far from being that endorsement of materialism it has been described as being; it is the assurance of an inhabitant behind the gateway. Indeed, the more closely I look into any of the senses, the more spiritual they become. All knowledge is by contact; all sympathy is in contact; and sin and purity, and health and disease, grow in contact. How true it is that there is no cure, no healing, without contact — that is, without mutual touching. If we cannot get near to that which heals, how can it heal us? Suppose I know of the medicine which might cure me, but I am in England, and the medicine or the physician is in America, and it is the only medicine — how can I be cured? Hence, then, guard the avenues of touch. It has been well said that the skin isolates the man, and makes him world tight; but it is necessary that the world's goods should come into his house — necessary, too, that the refuse and wear and tear should be carried forth, and that he should go out and in with the freedom of a man. The skin is our abode, not our prison; and the porous skin has its bivalve doors and windows, to admit supplies from without, and to allow the spirit to steer forth from within. Some things we must be careful to touch not.
(E. P. Hood.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And Jesus went with him; and much people followed him, and thronged him.