Jesus and his disciples went to Capernaum; and when the sabbath came, he entered the synagogue and taught. They were astounded at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes. Just then there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit, and he cried out, “What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God.” But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be silent, and come out of him!” And the unclean spirit, convulsing him and crying with a loud voice, came out of him. They were all amazed, and they kept on asking one another, “What is this? A new teaching– with authority! He commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey him.” At once his fame began to spread throughout the surrounding region of Galilee. Mark 1:21-28:
The devil is here called an unclean spirit, because he has lost all the purity of his nature, because he acts in direct opposition to the Holy Spirit of God, and because with his suggestions he pollutes the spirits of men. This man was in the synagogue; he did not come to be taught or to be healed, but, as some think, to confront Christ and oppose him, and hinder people from believing on him. The rage which the unclean spirit expressed at Christ; He cried out, as one in an agony, at the presence of Christ, and afraid of being dislodged; thus the devils believe and tremble, have a horror of Christ, but no hope in him, nor reverence for him. Yet a confession is extorted from him – that he is the holy One of God. Those who have only a notion of Christ – that he is the holy One of God, and have no faith in him, or love to him, go no further than the devil does. From Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the Whole Bible, Matthew Henry (1662 – 1714)
That last statement of Henry’s; “Those who have only a notion of Christ – that he is the holy One of God, and have no faith in him, or love to him, go no further than the devil does.” Is so profound, we should each ask ourselves if we really have faith in Christ, if we really love him and follow his teachings including his Fathers laws.
Say this prayer or one of your own;
In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray, Dear Lord, see me through these hard times. In these troubling times, I am filled with unspeakable fears. I reach out my hand to you now, And ask you to walk besides me. I cannot carry all my burdens, But I know you can, and will. Please walk beside me. Please guide me. Please help me hold on strong, Through the trials and storms. Help me hold on to my faith, In even the darkest hour. Stay with me Lord, And show me Your way. In your love and Holy Spirit I abide. Amen.
Go out into the world in peace;
hold on to what is good;
return no one evil for evil;
strengthen the fainthearted;
support the weak; help the suffering;
honor everyone; love and serve God;
rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit!