Today’s Reading: Luke 4:31-37
“Go away! What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God!”
Jesus demonstrates His divine Power in both heaven and earth as spirits submit to His commands. While Jesus’ words and teachings hold great authority, so do His actions reveal His authority. He casts out the spirit as a display of His might. In His interaction with the spirit, we learn a great deal more than Jesus Himself reveals. Not only is the spirit cast out of the man, but it confirms Who Jesus is.
The spirit declares, “What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth?” It knows Jesus by Name. The Lord holds a reputation among the spirits and is already known in the spirit world, although He has only just begun to make Himself known fully on earth among people.
The spirit cries out to Jesus, “Have You come to destroy us?” It knows Jesus’ Power, which is greater than its own. The impure spirit acknowledges that Jesus has the ability to destroy it and those of its kind. Jesus is more powerful than the spirits that possess and prey on people.
Most significantly, the spirit proclaims, “I know who You are – the Holy One of God!” What a statement to make of someone! The spirit knows well what many people in Jesus’ Presence at this time either do not understand or refuse to acknowledge: That Jesus is the Divine Messiah, the Holy One of God.
The people of Capernaum learn much from Jesus that day as He exhibits His Power to control those in the spirit realm. But perhaps much more interesting is what those around Jesus would be able to learn from the impure spirit: that Jesus is in fact the Messiah. The spirit reminds us that believing is not the same as following the Lord. The spirit knows Jesus’ authority and power, but is caught clearly acting against God. Regardless of the spirit’s rebellion, Jesus uses it as a proof of His Holiness and Power, and likewise works with the choices of people to bring about His Glory. In His great Authority to orchestrate all matters of time and space, our Lord is Good to use it all to further His Name.
Almighty God, You alone hold Authority over heaven and earth. Only You cast out evil and further Your Namesake. Only You are Powerful over all things. I am humbled to be called Yours, Lord. I am grateful to be cared for and loved by You. Thank You for the reminder that You are always in control. Please teach me to trust in Your Authority fully, and guide me in how to increasingly submit myself to Your Will and Purpose. I pray all of these things in Jesus’ Holy Name, AMEN.
Thru the Bible in a year (credit: Biblestudytools.com): Luke 4:31-44; Ezekiel 46-47; Isaiah 65