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. Mark 1:23-28

What is the essence of authority? Jesus knew what He was talking about because He knew the Father and had confidence in Him. He was not theorising or speculating. He was speaking from reality and experience. In Jesus’ conversation with Nicodemus, He confidently asserted, “I tell you the truth, we speak of what we know and we testify to what we have seen…”! (John 3:11). During the last supper, when He undressed Himself and washed the disciples’ feet, John commented, “Jesus knew that the Father has put all things under His power, and that He had come from God and was returning to God…” (John 13:3a).

John could not have recorded things like this unless he was divinely inspired. It seems, then, that the greatest authority comes from complete confidence in the one who has the authority.

Jesus translated that confidence into action in the synagogue in Capernaum. He was confronted by a shrieking madman who reacted violently to His presence. When Jesus spoke, the demon yielded, under protest, yes, but he had to give way because Jesus had the upper hand. Another demonstration of “fishing” for His disciples.

Jesus was not intimidated by the demon’s blustering show of strength. He confidently stood His ground because He knew where the authority lay. When it comes to a stand-off between His kingdom, where everything is perfect and orderly, and the kingdom of darkness, where chaos and ruin are the outcome, God’s kingdom prevails because Satan’s kingdom is all bluff.

In partnership with Jesus through the power of the Holy Spirit, every child of God carries the same authority to restore order and calm in the chaos we have created by siding with the devil. When we can confidently align ourselves with God and purposefully believe in His plan to restore perfection, He said that nothing is impossible. 10

Luella Campbell

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