Jesus, Please Leave! #4

Thursday, June 20, 2019

“And, behold, the whole city came out to meet Jesus: and when they saw him, they besought him that he would depart out of their coasts” (Matthew 8:34 KJV).

Friend, what would you do if the Lord Jesus Christ Himself happened to knock on your front door or ring your doorbell?

Matthew chapter 12 provides the key to understanding exorcisms—the casting out of devils—in Scripture: “[22] Then was brought unto him [Jesus] one possessed with a devil, blind, and dumb: and he healed him, insomuch that the blind and dumb both spake and saw. [23] And all the people were amazed, and said, Is not this the son of David? [24] But when the Pharisees heard it, they said, This fellow doth not cast out devils, but by Beelzebub the prince of the devils.

“[25] And Jesus knew their thoughts, and said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand: [26] And if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand? [27] And if I by Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your children cast them out? therefore they shall be your judges. [28] But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you. [29] Or else how can one enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man? and then he will spoil his house. [30] He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad.”

Verse 28 claims Jesus and His 12 Apostles performed exorcisms to show Israel God’s earthly kingdom was near. After all, Zechariah 13:2 said Messiah would remove the unclean spirits from Israel’s land. Exorcisms and physical healings were demonstrations of “the powers of the world to come” (Hebrews 6:5), “shewing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God” (Luke 8:1). When Jesus cast out the evil spirit in the context of today’s Scripture, how did Israel respond? In celebration and gratitude that Satan had been driven from them? No! Instead they asked Jesus to leave. They disallowed the very Man—the only Man—who could liberate them from satanic bondage….

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Can you explain Philippians 3:14?