Bible Reference: Mark 1:23-28
Translation: The Message (MSG)
Bible Text: Suddenly, while still in the meeting place, he was interrupted by a man who was deeply disturbed and yelling out, “What business do you have here with us, Jesus? Nazarene! I know what you’re up to! You’re the Holy One of God, and you’ve come to destroy us!” Jesus shut him up: “Quiet! Get out of him!” The afflicting spirit threw the man into spasms, protesting loudly—and got out. Everyone there was incredulous, buzzing with curiosity. “What’s going on here? A new teaching that does what it says? He shuts up defiling, demonic spirits and sends them packing!” News of this traveled fast and was soon all over Galilee.
OBSERVATION: Jesus had just called 4 disciples to follow Him – to learn about Him and then to be His example, as He gave them power to do so. A good first stop was the Temple, a normal place of worship and teaching. But what Jesus found there, was anything else but normal. I hope to draw our attention into what Jesus might find at our churches today when He walks in. Allow the Spirit to open your spiritual eyes, and remove all prejudices because of your love for your church, as you think about he might find right at your church!
APPLICATION: The first time that you visit a church, hopefully you will find a sweet spirit of corporation, love for each other, and preaching the pure, unadulterated Word of God. Of course, I hope that years after attending that church, you will still find the same thing there. But if we are to be totally honest with ourselves, it really becomes like anywhere else, because we get to know about the attitudes and actions of those that Satan has planted among us to stir up trouble and strife between God’s people. We find those who feel like they could do a much better job in the kitchen, or as a teacher in Sunday School, or even in the pulpit. We find those who are determined to fix the pastor, or the elder, or perhaps a deacon. Those who find fault with everything, and everyone. In fact, it becomes like a fog as we search in earnest for those who are strictly there for the purpose of worshipping God, learning more about Him, and to enjoy a sweet fellowship with the saints, as they search for ways to build one another up. But I wonder what God truly sees? I wonder if He was to send His Son, in person, through the doors of my church this weekend, what might He stop, touch me on the shoulder, and tell me to cleanse my heart of? Friends, we need not look for Him to point out the criminals in the church, or the backbiters, or those who habitually lie, steal or try to distract the saints, although I’m sure He knows each of our weaknesses very well. But may we soberly connect with the Master and hear Him say ‘well done good and faithful servant’, as that should be the desire of every believer. However to achieve that ultimate goal, no doubt there are several things that God might need to point out to us that tend to separate us from His perfect will. So do you suppose that we should look for the one in our midst possessed with a demon, that Jesus might have to call out, or would each of us have a full time job seeking God’s forgiveness for all that lies within us? Oh that we may pray like the psalmist, ‘Cleanse me oh God, and know my heart, my thoughts, my will and my desires’.
PRAYER: May the meditation of our hearts and the praise, worship and words from our lips, be acceptable to You oh Lord, our Rock, our Redeemer and our soon coming King. Please help us to keep our eyes fixed on You, and always conscious of our own weaknesses in trying to imitate You in this life here on earth. This is my personal prayer Oh lord. Help my readers to search their hearts and petition You for their needs, so that we will be found humble, pure and true before Your throne each and every day, especially at the unannounced time of Your return. AMEN!