11God did extraordinary miracles through Paul, 12 so that even handkerchiefs and aprons that had touched him were taken to the sick, and their illnesses were cured and the evil spirits left them.
13 Some Jews who went around driving out evil spirits tried to invoke the name of the Lord Jesus over those who were demon-possessed. They would say, “In the name of the Jesus whom Paul preaches, I command you to come out.” 14 Seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priests, were doing this. 15 One day the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know about, but who are you?” 16 Then the man who had the evil spirit jumped on them and overpowered them all. He gave them such a beating that they ran out of the house naked and bleeding.
The first thing that catches my attention is that people are being healed and set free from demons just by touching the cloth that Paul touched! Wow!
I don’t remember reading or hearing this story before!
It is so incredible and unbelievable, that I don’t want to believe; but I do believe it, because it was written by Paul, and by the power of the Holy Spirit, who helped him to make an account of all that he experienced and witnessed.
If we believe that the Bible is God’s Holy Word, and that it is all true then this story that Paul shares is true.
The second part of this story is also true about the sons of the chief priest attempting to drive an evil spirit out of a man, and the evil spirit spoke to them and then attacked them! That sounds like a horror movie! Why didn’t it work for them? What did they do wrong?
In Matthew 9:22 A woman is healed just by touching the hem of Jesus’s robe and he tells her it is because of her faith that she was healed.
I think that the sons of Sceva, had no faith in Jesus as God’s Son, they had no faith in the Holy Spirit, therefore the Holy Spirit was not with them to protect them from the demon-possessed man.
In yesterdays, blog we read that we need the full armor of God to protect us from the enemy.
And as Pastor said in his message this week, we are not strong enough on our own to stand against the evil one.
This is because our holes and brokenness make us vulnerable to evil.
I let down my guard when I don’t pray, then I go about my day with my own thoughts and feelings leading me along, and not really paying attention to what God is telling me to do.
I let doubts come in when I’m not in the word regularly. I forget the message he has for me in his word. I sometimes doubt that it is true and that God is real.
I give the enemy a foothold when I give into my emotions and let them control me and my actions. By the grace and protection of the Lord I have been spared many times from many dangers all around me.
It only takes a second of taking my focus off of Jesus, to get turned around, to feel defeated and to want to give up. That’s what Satan wants us to do.
But when I call on Jesus, he is there right beside me. With Jesus I can stand against evil. With Jesus I feel peace and I am strengthened in my spirit, because of the Holy Spirit that lives inside of me.
Evil is real and we need to recognize it when it invades our space!
But we do not have to fall victim to it!
In the Name of Jesus we stand against the enemy and all the evil that he tries to attack us with.
We need you, and we ask you to protect us from the enemy by reminding us to stay close to you each day through prayer, through reading your word and in fellowship with other believers who encourage us in our faith. Amen.