Saturday, April 5, 2008

Jesus 08'

In Mark 1:21 we are treated to a typical Mark "drive-by" story of the miraculous event involving Jesus pwning an evil spirit. Jesus has just arrived at Capernaum and goes to the synagogue to participate in the sabbath. As seemed to be the case with many early synagogues the guest was allowed to expound on the Scriptures and Jesus, in typical Jesus style, takes the crowd for a loop. We don't know if he had powerpoints, a three point sermon, or some type of flashy-Rob Bell approach but we do know that His sermon struck a chord because the people were blown away.

It strikes me here, for a couple of different reasons, that this story leads us to this shady man in the corner. Well, we don't know if he was in the corner, he could have been there with his family. His little daughter could have been sitting next to him. All we do know is that this demon felt the need to let itself be known. It cried out: "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!"

I read this tonight and started thinking of the current political climate and how every day there seems to be some new "endorsement" for candidate X and then there are also the other types of endorsements. The ones the candidates get but back themselves away from. They don't want these people carrying their banner. They don't want them carrying their message. They don't want them carrying their name. It's an endorsement they wish didn't happen. Sort of like a demon, in a religious house, on a holy day, revealing who He really was. In a "Luke, I am your father" sort of way. These people are shocked at His message, there about to be shocked at His healing, the last thing Jesus wants is the truth of His Gospel getting the endorsement of hell.

Have you ever wondered if Jesus knew that this spirit was there? What went through His head as this spirit spoke out these things? I started thinking of this and I almost picture Jesus devastated. Almost like Clark Kent watching helplessly as Lex Luthor reveals to Lois Lane that he really is Superman. Jesus watched as His arch-nemesis, the kryptonite He came to destroy, the serpent who tempted so long ago, began to preach the Gospel. Jesus watched as His beloved did not hear those sweet words from His lips but from the lips of the deceiver. He watched as His enemy revealed His identity, His secret, and the truth. It is then Jesus' response really carries weight: ""Be quiet!" said Jesus sternly."

He was the one who would show His beloved the truth. Not some half-wit, low life pit of hell material. Not some pitiful demon, who ends up screaming like a chicken at just Jesus words: "Come out". The Gospel message would be spoken by the King of all King. His beloved would hear His promise from His lips. It is His desire to speak them over us. His desire to let us know; His desire to let us know who He is. Many try to tell us...many endorsements come and go...but He promises to whisper them to us and shout down those who try and outspeak Him. If we would just simply listen; we would hear and see Him.


"Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few." Matthew 7:13-14