This week’s devotions are based on Week 4 of the Series “Fresh Start” – I Have New Possibilities! (WATCH HERE)
Every inventor imagines something that others determined was impossible. Every champion believes that the next record broken will be the one they break.
As individuals our life experiences determine in our mind what is possible or impossible. Personal growth experts identify that when we have a “closed mind” or “fixed mindset” we limit our possibilities because we have forgone conclusions about what is possible or not possible for me. Some realities in life we can’t change. I will never fit into a size small shirt or 30” waist. But other possibilities in life are often limited by our own mind.
So how does one’s closed mind become an open mind?
Often it’s with new experiences. It’s seeing something done that we didn’t believe could happen.
Perhaps a good example of this is running a 4 minute mile. Thought impossible until 1954 when Roger Bannister broke the barrier by .6 of a second at 3:59.4. Now over 1700 athletes have broken this barrier and a sub-four minute mile is the standard of the track and field world.
Not only is this true in the profession, athletic, and personal world, it is also a reality in the spiritual world. We often don’t think something is possible until we see it being done.
Back to the synagogue in Capernaum, Jesus gave the people there an experience that they hadn’t seen before. One of the attenders was possessed by an evil spirit. Here’s what happened:
Mark 1:23 Just then a man in their synagogue who was possessed by an evil spirit cried out, 24 “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!”
25 “Be quiet!” said Jesus sternly. “Come out of him!” 26 The evil spirit shook the man violently and came out of him with a shriek.
27 The people were all so amazed that they asked each other, “What is this? A new teaching—and with authority! He even gives orders to evil spirits and they obey him.”
Jesus illustrated in that setting that there was one who had power over Satan and his demons. The demon knew who he was and what he was sent to do. The people around in Jesus’ day appeared to have no idea there was one more powerful than the evil spirit. Jesus showed them different.
Jesus had come to destroy the power of the devil. It would come at the cross and finally culminate when he returns in glory. But when we see the power of Jesus’ word call the demon out and order him to be silent, we realize that one who is connected to Jesus and uses his Word has power over evil and the influence of Satan in their lives. The people were amazed at what they saw…perhaps (and we don’t know this for certain) their amazement continued when they realized that they no longer had to say “yes” to sin, or as the disciples realized later that they too, with the power of Jesus name and the truth of his Word, they too sent the demons running.
We are not the Son of God, but the experience Jesus gives us in the synagogue of Capernaum is a vivid reminder that we in no way have to cower to Satan and give in to him. As Martin Luther penned in his hymn, “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God”:
- And though this world, with devils filled, should threaten to undo us,
We will not fear, for God hath willed His truth to triumph through us;
The Prince of Darkness grim, we tremble not for him;
His rage we can endure, for lo, his doom is sure,
One little word shall fell him.
Don’t limit the possibilities of the power of God’s Word. Use it to overcome Satan and temptation in your life!
Apply: What sin has been a pet, or ongoing struggle for you? What word of truth can you throw at Satan when it comes that will send him running and overcome the temptation by honoring the Lord?
Prayer: Lord, thank you for showing your power over Satan and his demons. Let us not limit the power you have given us over sin and Satan, but rather wield it often and confidently to also send Satan reeling! AMEN.