FRIDAY, DECEMBER 30, 2011
The whole city came out to meet Jesus. And when they saw Him, they begged Him to depart from their region.—Matthew 8:34
You would think that after the miracle of casting out demons from two men who had violently oppressed them, the people in the area would have said, “Jesus, You are the man! We love what you did! Now we can go back to the cemetery and pay our respects to our loved ones and put flowers on their graves. We wouldn’t even go near there before. These guys were scary. Thank you, Lord, for coming to our community.” But that is not what happened. Instead, they wanted Him to go away. Why? It was because Jesus was bad for business.
Jesus had cast the demons out of the men and into a herd of swine that went over a cliff. I don’t know if those who kept the herd were Jewish, because if they were, this was not a kosher thing to be doing. They had been making money off the pigs, and there was no more bringing home the bacon for them. It was the end of that story. So they thought, We don’t like this. This is bad for our economy. Go away.
For some people, Jesus is bad for their business. It is typically the kind of business that preys on human suffering—even contributes to it. And if you have discovered that Jesus is bad for your business, then you need to get another job.
In the region of the Gadarenes, the people realized that Jesus wasn’t good for what they did, and therefore, they wanted Him to go away. Matthew’s Gospel tells us, “The whole city came out to meet Jesus. And when they saw Him, they begged Him to depart from their region” (Matthew 8:34). So guess what Jesus did? He left.
Jesus won’t force His way into anyone’s life, including yours. Have you invited Him in?
TODAY’S RADIO PROGRAM:”What if This Were Your Last Year on Earth? — II”
Used by permission from Harvest Ministries with Greg Laurie, PO Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514.