Sometimes We May Need to Go Far Away for Jesus and Other Times We May Need to Go Home
Before Jesus returns to heaven, he tells his followers to go throughout the world and let others know about him (Matthew 28:19). Does that mean we’re all supposed to travel to a distant country for Jesus? Is that their mission field? It could be, but it might not.
Consider a different account, one where Jesus gives an alternate instruction.
Luke tells us the story of Jesus exorcising a legion of demons from a man. Jesus permits the displaced demons to enter into a herd of pigs. They do. The pigs go berserk, jump into the water, and drown.
(We know the pigs die, but I wonder if the demons die along with them. It’s an interesting thought, but that question has deep theological ramifications to consider at a different time.)
The demonic influence is now gone from the man. In his right mind, and likely full of gratitude, the man asks if he can hang out with Jesus. Jesus says “sure, why not . . .” No, that’s not what Jesus says at all.
Jesus tells the man no way. Instead Jesus instructs the restored man to simply go home and let his family and friends know about what God did for him by restoring him to full health. His hometown is his mission field. The man obeys and tells the whole town about Jesus.
In both accounts Jesus tells his followers to go. One time it is to go to all nations and the other time it is to go home. While our mission field may be in a foreign country, it might also be in our own home or right next door.
Read through the Bible with us this year. Today’s reading is Luke 7-9, and today’s post is on Luke 8:38-39.]
Read more about the book of Luke in That You May Know: A 40-Day Devotional Exploring the Life of Jesus from the Gospel of Luke, now available in e-book, paperback, and hardcover.
Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.
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