Family Bible Study lesson for Oct. 31: Desiring Deliverance : Friday, Oct. 15, 2004
October 15 2004 by Robert Hunter

Family Bible Study lesson for Oct. 31: Desiring Deliverance : Friday, Oct. 15, 2004
Friday, Oct. 15, 2004

Family Bible Study lesson for Oct. 31: Desiring Deliverance

By Robert Hunter
Focal Passages: Mark 5:1-13, 18-20

This seems an appropriate season to deal with devils. Halloween is a time when we think about the existence of witches, goblins, vampires, ghosts and devils.

You may be of the opinion that Halloween is simply a light-hearted time for dressing up and going door-to-door for treats. You may be convinced this is a time of serious worship of evil spirits and that Halloween honors Satan.

Either way Halloween should be a reminder that many people all over the world are under the influence of demonic forces and are in need of help.

The good news is there is help and it comes in the form of Jesus Christ.

This lesson is about a man who needed help. We refer to him as demon-possessed. Maybe you shy away from this in the 21st century.

Most of us would say we believe there is a devil and that he has much influence in the world. But do we claim the victory possible?

Realize evil can control people

Mark 5:1-7

Arriving on the eastern shore of the sea of Galilee, Jesus and His disciples come upon a man severely disturbed. He was so disturbed that he must have been a victim of no less than a legion of spirits.

The devil uses every tool available to trap and destroy people. The devil uses addictions such as alcohol, drugs, sexual perversion, pornography, gambling, domestic abuse, violence of other sorts - the list goes on and on.

The devil knows every person's weakness. He knows what buttons to push. He knows the points of vulnerability. He can influence Christians and bring untold harm. But, he cannot possess a heart already filled with Jesus.

Believe Jesus can overcome evil

Mark 5:8-13

Ephesians 6 states: "For our battle is not against flesh and blood, but against ... spiritual forces of evil." To gain victory over these evil forces we must turn to Jesus. Only through Him can people be delivered from demonic control and influence.

Maybe you are under the control of the devil or know someone who is. The first step toward being delivered is to believe in Jesus as Savior and be saved by grace through faith.

Maybe you have allowed for demonic influence in your life. Then you are not walking close enough to the path you know. Return to your first love. There can only be one Lord.

A literary technique called an oxymoron is appropriate here. It is the conjunction of contradictory terms. If you are allowing demonic influence in your life as a Christian then you are applying the oxymoron of "No, Lord!"

Our reactions are mixed to the lordship of Christ just as they were in this story. The swine herders were afraid and requested Jesus to return from whence He came. The healed man testified to the glory of God - sitting rather than ranting, clothed rather than naked, and sane rather than mad.

Be a living witness of Jesus' power

Mark 5:18-20

The seasons we celebrate are proof of the power of Jesus or should be - Christmas with its wreaths and trees, and Easter with its eggs.

Christianity also took over Halloween, called the "festival of Samhain," by the Druids some 1,600 years ago. The Celts celebrated the beginning of their new year, November 1, by offering a variety of bonfires, sacrifices and prayers to those who had died during the year. These souls, they believed, were judged on New Year's Eve and would return in a form based upon their past life -good souls entered human bodies and bad souls entered animals.

Christian missionaries took over this celebration and transformed it into "All Saints' Day" or "All Hallows' Day" - a day to remember all those in the church who had died the previous year. The time of observance was also shifted to All Hallows' Eve, Oct. 31.

All these traditions of costumes, treats and jack-o'-lanterns stem from a need to recognize and even embrace death.

We, who have accepted Jesus as Savior and Lord, do not need to be afraid. He has power over death and demons.

10/15/2004 12:00:00 AM by Robert Hunter | with 0 comments




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