Matthew 4.23-25 cont.
23 And He went around the whole of Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the good news of the Kingdom, and healing every disease and every sickness among the people.
24 And the report about Him went out into the whole of Syria. They brought to Him all who were ill, those having different diseases and tormented with afflictions; those being possessed by demons, and being epileptics, and paralyzed, and He healed them.
25 And large crowds followed Him from Galilee and Decapolis, And Jerusalem and Judea, and from beyond the Jordan.
It is often said that good news travels fast, but that bad news travels even faster.
It is said that Winston Church put it this way:
“A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on”
Our newspapers, and the media in general mostly deal with bad news, the things that have gone wrong, the disaster that occur; whilst good news is rarely reported.
The good news about Jesus spread a long way. His fame was heard about in Syria in the north. It also spread to the south as far as Jerusalem, and also to the east into Decapolis. This was ten towns that had a certain amount of political freedom from Rome.
His fame drew large crowds, as people had their hopes built up that perhaps Jesus might be the longed for Messiah, the one who would bring them not only political freedom from Rome, but world domination.
Perhaps it is important that nowhere in the gospels do we read that Jesus ever encouraged people to believe that He had come as a political leader. Instead He made it plain that He had come to bring in the Kingdom of Heaven, which is completely different from the Kingdoms of this world.
However, the words in Revelation speak of the world kingdom becoming the possession of Jesus:
The kingdom of the world has become those of our Lord and of His Christ, and He will reign forever and ever – Revelation 11.15.
The Jews were looking for good news, and in Jesus there was good news.
Today we must also make sure that the report that we give about Jesus is good news.
The news that comes from Syria at the present time is bad news as the fighting continues between government forces and those of ISIS. As is usual with war it is the civil population that suffers the most.
These people desperately need the good news of Jesus, for it is only in Jesus that mankind will find real and lasting peace, since He is the Prince of Peace.