Scripture Reference Ephesians 6
12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
Mark 1: 21 They went to Capernaum, and when the Sabbath came, Jesus went into the synagogue and began to teach. 22 The people were amazed at his teaching, because he taught them as one who had authority, not as the teachers of the law. 23 Just then a man in their synagogue who was possessed by an impure 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 impure 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 impure spirits and they obey him.” 28 News about him spread quickly over the whole region of Galilee.
It is important that we understand the context wherein this situation occurred; it is a Sabbath day, the Lord’s Day and the people of God have gathered together to worship in a local synagogue. The Lord Jesus Christ is present in the house of prayer and is teaching the people from the Scriptures.
It is here in this God ordained context that we find an aberration, a fellow parishioner is also present and he is possessed by an evil spirit. What happens next is shocking, the man possessed by the spirit begins to cry 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!”
Who is the “us” he is referring to? Is it the other parishioners? It would seem unlikely in that the focus of the outcry seems to be all evil spirits – “Have you come to destroy us?” The Bible specifically states that the devil himself is quite aware that his time to “steal and to kill and destroy” John 10:10 is short, Rev. 12:12.
So then we find here that the devil has infiltrated the people of God and even sits among them as they go about their weekly worship. Surely this man had gone unnoticed by the others for perhaps quite some time unless he happened to be a visitor that particular Sunday, but then why would the evil spirit who possessed the man attend a service that he knew the Son of God would show up in? I believe the spirit possessing the man was unaware that Jesus would be “in the House” that day. This brings me to the focal point of this lesson, the church should not just be a meeting place for affiliates; it should be the meeting place of God! I have said many times to my own people that I think the church is in trouble if a person living in sin or controlled by an evil spirit can sit comfortably in a worship service without any conviction when hearing the Word of God being spoken.
The presence of the Lord Jesus Christ will always evoke a response! The enemy is not threatened by our little gatherings and our nice songs! It is the authority of the Name of Jesus and the power of His presence that causes the demons of hell to tremble with fear!