One Sunday morning Jesus was preaching in the Synagogue. So, during the service a man with an unclean spirit cried out loud, “Have you come to destroy us Son of God?” Jesus said, “Be silent, and come out of him.” Then the man returned to his right mind. The people were amazed at Jesus’ authority and power. And they said to each other, “He commanded demons and they obeyed.”

People believed in demons. They believed demons occupied dark and unclean places. If a person wasn’t careful in these places, a demon might get into them. It was believed demons caused mental illnesses.

The man with an unclean spirit actually suffered from insanity. He suffered from the delusion owned by demon. He thought Jesus was out to get him. If he was mistaken, then how did he know Jesus was the Son of God? I am sure everyone in that synagogue were amazed. They were talking about his authority and his power of teachings.

We don’t believe in demons anymore. The last time you were sick you went to a doctor, right? We believe in modern medicine for treatments. We asked a pastor or friend to pray for us. They maybe prayed that God would give wisdom and guidance to the doctors and nurses.

Today people avoid dark places and protect their homes against the evil of crime and violence. They fear that robs one of a good quality of life. In ancient societies people believed they were possessed by demons. Today people are possessed by desires, lusts and addictions.

Forces of evil exist. I don’t believe in the devil that hide in dark and unclean places. But I do believe in evil that can take over people’s lives. So, these demons are fears, anxieties and hungers that stay in the dark places of people’s hearts. They are demonic evil forces that cause racial violence and domestic abuse. They are seducing people to throw their lives away for money, sex or drugs.

Evil demonic forces exist! They may not take the form of devils. They take form in the evil and sin in the world. These evil forces can possess and work through people.

But the existence of demons is not what our passage about. The Bible is more concerned with “Who is Jesus and what is he doing?”

The real issue in this passage is the authority of Jesus. It opens with the people being amazed at the way Jesus teaches. He doesn’t teach like the scribes. Jesus says as if his word should be enough to believe.

People were offended and said, “Who does this man think he is and what is he doing?” The demon said, “Have you come to destroy us, Son of God?” Jesus has come with power and authority to destroy the forces of evil. Jesus has power and authority to remove evil from our lives! So, I want you to repeat after me: “Jesus has power and authority to remove evil from my life.”

Now, imagine if the forces of evil gathered before us. There is violent crime making people shrink for fear behind locked doors. There is drug addiction dragging victims around in chains. Here is domestic violence abusing those closest to him. Here are racism, materialism, me-ism, and all other evils that invade our lives.

Maybe if we close our eyes they will go away. No, it doesn’t work. They are too real to just ignore. Maybe we can run from them. It won’t work either. Escap-ism is waiting to take us if we try. We can’t defeat them. We don’t have strength to defeat even poverty.

But Jesus can! He came to destroy evil. Jesus has the power and authority to tell evil where to go. And we should have that power to tell evil to go away!

Don’t ignore the power of evil in our world. Whether you believe the devil is an actual entity or just a metaphor for evil. Just look around you at what is happening in our world. Evil is real. Know Christ is able to overpower evil.

Jesus was in the synagogue casting out demon. Jesus is here! Are there any evil forces in your life? Evil of fear, anxiety or even threatens to take over your life. Jesus is the Son of God! Jesus has the power and authority and is here today to destroy the demons.” Shalom and Amen!

Scripture: Mark 1:21-28