Friday, January 28, 2011

Overpowering word of exorcism

And immediately there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit. And he cried out, “What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God.” But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be silent, and come out of him!” And the unclean spirit, convulsing him and crying out with a loud voice, came out of him. (The Gospel of Mark 1:23-25)

"Jesus' word, presented with a sovereign authority which permitted neither debate nor theoretical reflection..." - William Lane

The demon tried to engage Jesus in a discussion-a tactic of the Devil and his demons. Jesus said- "Shut up...get out of him."


Woody Woodward said...

I enjoyed reading Matthew Henry’s deep thoughts on this somewhat puzzling passage. I have often wondered, what was a demon possessed man doing in the synagogue in the first place and why did Jesus choose this place, at this time to do His work of casting out? The demon possessed man did not come to learn of God, to be saved nor to be healed. Little did he know, he had a destiny with the living Christ! And many others in the synagogue would witness the power of the Word made known this day and in this way. Henry makes note that in this passage of Mark, “the demon was the first one to make known to all who would hear, that Christ was the ‘holy One of God!’ In effect the evil one was not able to stand in the presence of the Perfect One. It was a vain effort for the evil one to beg Christ to have nothing to do with him.” Henry said he didn’t want to be saved and he didn’t want to be destroyed either. His desire was to have nothing to do with Christ. The evil one’s power and his binding spell was immediately broken when Christ commanded control over His sovereign authority. And as you said Pastor, the Lord saw through his tactics and when he was commanded to be quiet, I bet you could have heard a pin drop throughout the entire sound-reverberating stone synagogue. When Christ delivers sinners out of the hands of Satan, it is not without turmoil of the soul. Satan last outburst was to make himself seem terrible, but when Jesus speaks, His commanding words calm the most terrible of storms. “And they became much afraid and said to one another, ‘Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?’” (Mark 4:40)

Reepicheep said...

For a demon possessed man to sit comfortably in a synagogue for some time before Christ confronted Him with truth tells you about the kind of teaching going on in that synagogue.

I fear we have many comfortable demoniacs in our churches today...tells you something about the preaching.

Michael Lockridge said...

I was present at two separate demonic manifestations; once in the Army and once in the jail where I worked as an officer.

The first expressed his desire to attack us, several soldiers, but that he could not. He was somehow constrained. We were ALL American soldiers on active duty based in the United States.

The second was an inmate in custody. Though I suspected a number of other possessions, this was an overt manifestation. That is only ONE in twenty years.

I do not mind that this is not a common experience. It can be most unpleasant.