Sunday 2-12-17, Modesto, California
Today we read Lev 18 – 19 and Acts 19
S = Scripture O = Observation A = Application P = Prayer SOAP for the soul.
S. Acts 19:14-17 Seven sons of Sceva, a leading priest, were doing this. But when they tried it on a man possessed by an evil spirit, the spirit replied, "I know Jesus, and I know Paul. But who are you?" And he leaped on them and attacked them with such violence that they fled from the house, naked and badly injured. The story of what happened spread quickly all through Ephesus, to Jews and Greeks alike. A solemn fear descended on the city, and the name of the Lord Jesus was greatly honored. NLT
O. The word was getting around. Well-known Jewish priests, excursionists, the Seven Sons of Sceva” were traveling in this area casting out demons. Apparently, they were not true believers in Christ as their Messiah. But they had heard from reliable sources that believers in Jesus saw powerful results by using the words, “Come out! In Jesus name!” Probably their normal incantations were not working on this demon possessed man. So, they decided to try the power of “Jesus name.”
A. The final result was that the name of the Lord Jesus was greatly honored. One of the best way to convince a skeptic, an agnostic or an atheist is for him or her to witness the power of the devil in action as he fights back trying to resist the power in the name of Jesus. When they see their friend suddenly tearing at their clothing, falling and writhing, screaming in terror as the demon fights back… even an atheist suddenly becomes aware of a dark, invisible spiritual dimension that responds violently to the name above every name, the name of Jesus. The great successes of Carlos Annacondia’s crusades is partly due to the fact that this brother uses the power of Jesus’ name to force the demon powers of hell to reveal themselves in a public arena.
P. Lord Jesus, I do not like to see the devil in action for it is often ugly. But if You allow such a violent scene to convince a skeptic… and if that skeptic surrenders to You, I guess it is worth the mess. I am so glad that I have the wonderful power of Your name on my side of the equation. Nothing to fear… for Your perfect love casts out all fear. Amen.