Matt 4:24 Then His fame went throughout all Syria; and they brought to Him all sick people who were afflicted with various diseases and torments, and those who were demon-possessed, epileptics, and paralytics; and He healed them. NKJV
Biblical deliverance is not hard to discern. The model is there in Scripture for all to read. Sadly, most don’t want to know what Jesus did and why He did it. They prefer to explain the miraculous of exorcism away. But this passage tells us the consequences of Christ’s miracles. His fame spread rapidly. Mathew tells us they brought to Jesus those where were demon-possessed; not those they suspected of being demon possessed. The diagnosis was specific. How did people know this? Because the behavior of the individuals they diagnosed as experiencing possession had obviously included objective manifestations; they had exhibited erratic, destructive behavior consistent with an indwelling evil.
All this happened immediately after the temptation of Satan. Jesus wasted no time fulfilling his mission. He healed the sick and cast out demons. To negate the clear meaning of this scripture, the critic must conclude that the gospel writers were using the language of the day to describe those afflicted with depression, epilepsy, or what we’d call schizophrenia. The public also brought some who were sick, but Matthew makes a distinction between the sick and the possessed. Some brought to Jesus those who suffered physically and some who suffered spiritually.
Consider these arguments regarding the validity of how demons presented themselves and how Christ and the disciples dealt with them.
- The beings causing torments spoke and exhibited behavior consistent with an identity separate from the tormented person. The entities asked questions, gave answers and indicated supernatural knowledge of who Christ was.
- In this passage, epilepsy is treated as a separate condition to be healed.
Tomorrow, more on what we learn from the Bible about the nature of demonic possession, and how it was handled by Jesus and His disciples.