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Matthew 12:22-28: If Satan casts out Satan

Posted by adventbiblestudy on December 4, 2011


Matthew 12:22-28 MKJV Then one who had been demon-possessed was brought to Him, blind and dumb. And He healed him, so much so that the blind and dumb one both spoke and saw. (23) And all the people were amazed and said, Is not this the son of David? (24) But when the Pharisees heard, they said, This one does not cast out demons except by Beelzebub the ruler of the demons. (25) And Jesus knew their thoughts and said to 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 casts out Satan, he is divided against himself; how then shall his kingdom stand? (27) But if I cast out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they shall be your judges. (28) But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come to you.

 

The young boy had a smile that could melt the hardest heart. His big brown eyes and dark curly hair added to his attractive features. He was loved by everyone in the neighborhood, and his mother had few worries when he went out to play or explore.

Although he had many blessings, life had also given him curses. He was born blind and dumb. He never met his father, who left shortly after his birth. He could not bear the chastisement and speculations of society, wondering why his son was born blind and dumb.

The other children treated him fairly. They included him in their games in any capacity they could think of. His best friend was a little girl about his age, who often took him on walks, painting pictures with words of all the scenes along the way, handing him items to touch, and describing each one. The little boy’s world was filled with a measure of love and excitement few in his condition experienced.

If only more of the adults had as much compassion as the children. Many of the adults treated his condition as a contagious disease. They wanted nothing to do with him. To make matters worse, many of the adults assumed if he could not speak, he also suffered from a loss of hearing. For this reason many of them had no reservations about making comments right in front of him. Many of those comments cut right to the heart. At times he wished he had the ability to tell these people how they made him feel.

Many of the adults claimed he was possessed by a demon, and speculated on the cause. Some did not think twice about accusing the boy of sins he never committed. Others blamed his mother. The accusations that hurt the most were pointed at the father he never met. Some times it took the boy days, or weeks to get over some of the words that cut so deep.

His little friend, Hannah could tell when Eli was hurting. Today she sensed his pain more than ever. She wished there was a way she could find out what was really bothering him. She decided to take him for a long walk, to get away from the city. As they walked out of the city into the country, she held his hands, describing the rolling hills, green grass, each small home built along side the road, the animals in the pens, and the sheep grazing in the pastures. Crossing over a hill they saw a large crowd in the valley below.

Guiding Eli by the hand, Hannah made her way to the center where she looked upon a man with both hands placed upon a small girl kneeling in front of Him. After a few seconds, the girl stood up, pulled her dress up to look at her knees, turned and ran to a young couple kneeling a few feet away. Hannah began to think to herself, could this be Jesus? She heard so much about Him. Could the stories be true? Much of what she heard was from the priests and their supporters, the Pharisees. They talked about Jesus’ healing, and seemed to have an excuse describing how each was staged in an attempt to make Jesus appear as one of the prophets. Hannah described the scene to Eli as the next person approached Jesus.

“Eli, I think this is Jesus. There is an old man coming up to Him. He has his arm supported in a sling hanging around his neck. Jesus is feeling the old man’s arm now. He is taking it out of the sling now. The man is feeling his arm now. You should see the look on the man’s face. Can you hear him praising God now?”

Hannah remained silent for a moment as she contemplated what she had just seen. Another person approached Jesus. Hannah continued providing Eli with a description of the actions in front of them. “Eli, this time a young boy about your age is going to the Healer. I can see he is walking with a crutch, his left foot is crooked, and I can see his leg is so skinny, barely skin and bones. The Healer is kneeling in front of the boy. He has one hand on each of the boy’s shoulders. The Healer is praying over the boy. He is putting His hands on the boys foot now. His foot is straightening out now. Eli, I can see the boys leg getting stronger, I can see it grow! Eli, the boy is healed! Eli, the boy dropped his crutch and is hugging the Healer. The boy is running to his parents now. Eli, I think this is for real. I, I, Eli, ….. We have to, I have to take you to Him. Come on, let’s go.”

For a moment Hannah forgot Eli’s disability as she ran to Jesus, Eli in tow. Half way to their destination, Eli fell. Hannah lost her grip. It took her a few steps to stop. She turned around, raced back to Eli, and began helping him to his feet. Hannah was so excited, she dropped Eli back to the ground a time or two while trying to help him up. When she finally got him to his feet, she turned around, took one step and ran into someone standing right behind her. This time Hannah found herself on the ground looking up at Jesus. He held out His hand to help Hannah to her feet. It took her a second or two to catch her breath as she shouted out, “are you Jesus? Can you help my friend? I saw what you did, I know you can do it.”

Another voice caught Jesus’ attention. One of the Pharisees shouted out, “this is the demon possessed boy from the city, we all know his mother the sinner, and no one knows his father. For all we know is, it may be Satan himself.” Many in the crowd let out a chuckle at the Pharisees’ comment. Many of the people there knew the boy and the stories that followed him. Jesus turned back to the boy, placed His hands on his shoulders, and asked, “do you want to be whole?” Eli was not sure how to answer, but the touch on his shoulders was like no other he had ever felt before. Everyone looked on as Eli turned his head from one side to the other as if looking for an answer. He bowed his head and answered, “I believe you can make me whole.”

Hannah stared at Eli’s eyes, looking for some kind of sign. Jesus placed His right hand over Eli’s eyes for a few seconds. When He removed His hand, Eli quickly covered them with his own hands. It appeared he was in some sort of pain. Hannah rushed forward, instinctively hugging him, trying to relieve the pain she saw in his face. She looked at his face wondering what to do. She saw a smile come to Eli’s face. He slowly removed his hands from his eyes which were now clear. Eli said, “I can see now. I can see now!” Hannah turned and fell at Jesus’ feet,. Thanking Him over and over again.

A man appeared out of the crowd. He walked up to Eli, and just stood in front of him for a moment. Eli continued shouting, I can see, I can see. Finally the man spoke up, “and you can speak also.” Eli stopped, looking up at the man and said, “your voice is familiar, do I know you?” The man began to cry as he knelt down, taking Eli in his arms, he said, “I am your father. Forgive me, I did not think of you, I was only thinking if myself, but today, today, I heard Jesus speak. Son, can you forgive me? I am so sorry. All I want is a chance to make it up to you, and your mother. All I want is my family back. I am so sorry, I love you so much.”

At that moment the Pharisee interrupted again. “This one does not cast out demons except by Beelzebub the ruler of the demons.” Eli’s father stood up. Facing the Pharisees he was prepared not only to defend his son, but the Healer. Just as he was about to speak, he felt a hand on his shoulder. He turned and faced Jesus. As he looked into Jesus’ eyes he felt like every thought in his head was open to Him. Jesus said, “remember what I told you son, mercy is more important than sacrifice.”

Jesus walked to the group of Pharisees and offered His explanation. “Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation. And every city or house divided against itself shall not stand. And if Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself; how then shall his kingdom stand? But if I cast out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they shall be your judges. But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come to you.

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