by Pastor Adekoya
THE SCRIPTURE FULFILLED
For a number of years, the books of the prophets and the books of the laws had been read in the synagogues as a normal religious routine but this time around, He that spoke then is here to read and to confirm what He said that Isaiah documented! They knew, of course, that those words were not actually the words of Isaiah or the mission of Isaiah but of the Messiah that has been long awaited.
After the reading, they waited for Him to explain what He just read but instead, He sat… Enough suspense to create a curious atmosphere that makes what’s up coming to sink deeply in the heart! Obviously, much of what He said to them right there are not documented but to say “This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears” means that He was the Messiah they’ve been waiting for!
That sounded “gracious” to them until their Jewish minds reminded them of His background: “Is not this Joseph’s son?” As it is with the Jews, they seek always for signs. Most definitely, they would have required some physical signs and wonders to validate His claim right there.
Jesus’s comments from verse 23 down to 27 show the reason why the Jews have always missed out on God’s best for them. They don’t believe in their own! Jesus cited examples of how there were many widows in Israel but in Elijah’s time but it was a Gentile widow in Zarephath. In Elisha’s time, many were lepers in Israel but it was a Gentile Namaan that got healed. That clearly shows how deep-rooted they are in unbelief. Jesus was in other words telling that His show of sign and wonders wouldn’t amount to anything until they’re healed of their age-long plague of unbelief!
Nonetheless, right there, a miracle, or a sign was given, but they were blinded to it. Rather than to trust Him, they made to ‘thrust Him out of the city, and led him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might cast him down headlong.’ But, instead…. ‘he passing through the midst of them went his way’ …that always turns on something within me!
THEY KNOW HIM…
It is somewhat amazing to see that the same Jesus that the Jews were doubting whether He was the Messiah they were looking for or just the son of Joseph, when a demon possessed encountered him the demon in Him could recognize Him. This shows that:
- To know Jesus is beyond the letters or theological accuracy. It must be by the Spirit or through the Spirit. Thank God, we know Him. Hallelujah!
- The demons know who Jesus is but they cannot be saved. That is, salvation requires more than just knowing Jesus but, receiving Him; confessing Him as Lord and Savior. This is what the demons cannot do. To win souls therefore, we break the demonic hold over the mind of the people we are reaching out to, as many that are ordained for salvation, that they will not just claim to know Him or just believe Him (as the devil does and trembles) but they will receive Him. Interestingly, though what the demon was saying about Jesus is true but Jesus wouldn’t allow the demon to go any further. He rather rebuked the demon and cast him out! Why? Because it is not given to demons to preach the gospel! Hope those who are into some kind of “Deliverance ministry” will actually understand this that interviewing demons is not a valid way of getting to know the truth.
Jesus rebuking the fever that took over Simon’s wife’s mother shows that some sicknesses and not just ordinary but, everything answers and bows to the authority of Jesus. That is much more important!
Finally, we see Jesus always placing emphasis on preaching and teaching above all. His focus and mission was not actually the miracle but they were part of it. The preaching of the Gospel of the kingdom of God was of paramount importance as He said in verse 43 “I must preach the kingdom of God to other cities also. For therefore am I sent.”
Of course, we understand that Jesus was not fundamentally or absolutely sent just to preach but to accomplish the work of redemption. However without the preaching of the gospel, the death and the Resurrection of Jesus Christ will not amount to much, if anything. That is because, Faith comes by hearing. Now, Jesus has died, resurrected and ascended. The preaching of the gospel remains valid till he returns and we are all called to do this at our various levels; at every given opportunity.
Interestingly, Grace abounds towards us, hallelujah!