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Matthew 9


Unwanted by the residents on the other side of the lake, who were annoyed by the crowds of sick and crazy people wanting free health care, Jesus and his assistants got back on their boat and went home.

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Meanwhile, the local Director of Roman Intelligence met with some leading Jewish Rabbis about their new problem. This new preacher Jesus had become extremely popular in parts of Israel, mostly because of the free health care he offered to the masses. The Roman Alliance could not afford free health care while paying for their expensive War on Terror. Even worse, as Jesus got more popular, the Roman occupation got less popular. Zealot recruitment was way up, and the suicide swordings were getting worse.

"We can't arrest him while he's this popular, the people would riot!"

"We'll have to try something different, then. We need to discredit him in the eyes of his fans. We need to have him followed at all times by hecklers and provocateurs, we need to get him pissed off in public, we need to catch every word he says and publicize anything that would upset his fans. See if you can trick him into breaking some minor laws, that always upsets the law & order types."

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Back home, believers continued to bring their sick to Jesus. As he healed them he would say, "Your sins are forgiven."

One of the hecklers shouted out, "Blasphemy! You don't have the authority to forgive sins, only God has that authority!" The crowd was taken aback.

Jesus replied, "God has given me the authority to forgive sins here on earth, while people are still alive, before it is too late!"

The crowd was pleased that God had done this, that they could be cleansed of their sins while still alive. This was much better than being stained by sin forever.

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Moving on, Jesus walked by the IRS, and saw a tax attorney named Matthew. "Follow me," said Jesus. Matthew did. They spoke of many things, and Matthew ended up inviting Jesus over for dinner. Jesus gratefully accepted. Matthew also invited many of his friends and coworkers, and of course Jesus brought his entourage, so it became a huge party.

One of the hecklers shouted to the crowd outside Matthew's house, "Look, Jesus is partying with the evil tax collectors and other sinners! How dare he!" Some in the crowd became very upset about this, and began to argue amongst themselves.

Jesus had to step outside to address the crowd, lest they fight. He told them, "It is not the healthy who seek a doctor, but the sick. Similarly, it is not the righteous who need to be forgiven, but the sinners. I go where I am needed most! I dine with the sinners, to bring them the Good News of God's forgiveness!"

This explanation helped to calm the crowd, and the party continued.

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The next day, people came to ask Jesus, "How come you and your followers don't fast? We are taught to show our respect for God by fasting. Why don't you fast?"

Jesus replied, "My followers are happy to be with me, as happy as wedding guests partying with the groom. There will be time for fasting later, when I am gone."

During this conversation, a powerful politician came to Jesus, mourning his dead daughter. "Jesus, my daughter is dead, but I know you can bring her back to life. Please come with me!" Jesus and his assistants went with the politician, and brought his daughter back to life. News of this spread throughout the land, and Jesus became more popular than ever.

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Jesus continued to heal those who had faith in him, including the blind, and the insane.

Hecklers began to whisper among the crowd, "This is not natural. This is obviously the work of the Devil, who has given Jesus the power to heal in return for his soul."

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So many people wanted to hear the teachings of Jesus ... So many people demanded free health care ... Jesus realized he could no longer meet this demand by himself. It was time for him to appoint some deputies. He would call them: The Disciples.


[Previous entry: "Matthew 8"] [TOC] [Next entry: "Matthew 10"]

 

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