It was the power in the name of Jesus plus the disciples’ faith in that power that made the demons subject unto them. This can clearly be seen in Acts 19:13-17 where certain Jews called on the name of Jesus in an effort to cast demons out of a man. They used the name of Jesus, but it didn’t work because they had not put faith in that name.
These Jews were itinerants who used incantations to effect deliverance for people who were demon possessed. The first-century historian, Josephus, wrote of an exorcism that he witnessed in the presence of Vespasian and many of his soldiers. The exorcist supposedly followed a ritual passed down from King Solomon to effect the deliverance. There is no doubt that men throughout all history have tried to resist demonic spirits, but as this example proves, only Jesus and those who have received His life are successful.
Those who relegate demonic spirits to the realm of superstition do not believe in the entire Word of God. The Gospels alone contain over 90 references to the devil or devils (demons). The Apostle Paul said when writing to these people in Ephesus, “We wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Eph. 6:12). The devil and demons do exist, but all believers in Jesus share in His total victory over them.
The name of Jesus is not magic. It does not work like a charm. As Peter said, “His name, through faith in his name” (Acts 3:16) is what brings results.
BE OPEN TO WHAT GOD HAS FOR YOU
Have you ever heard about how hunters used to trap monkeys? The hunters would fill a large barrel with bananas and then cut a small hole in the side of it just barely big enough for the monkey to get his hand and arm through. The monkey, completely unaware of the trap, would reach his arm into the barrel and grab one of those bananas. But when he would try to pull his arm out, he wouldn’t be able to get his clenched fist and the banana through the hole. The monkey would hold that banana so tightly and not dare release it. Consequently, the hunters would easily capture the monkey. What’s interesting is that at any point prior to the capture, the monkey could have easily let go of the banana and pulled his hand out of the barrel. But that monkey was so focused on what he wanted that he didn’t even realize he was in a trap!
Many people live like that today—with both hands clenched, so focused on trying to hold on to what they have that they don’t realize it’s robbing them of the freedom and victory God has in store. Don’t let that be you! Choose to release anything that’s keeping you from God’s best because nothing in this world is worth holding on to so tightly. Don’t get trapped because you aren’t willing to change or reposition yourself or your thinking. Remember, God always has your best in mind. His plans are for your good, and when you follow His plans, you can move forward in peace, strength, joy, faith and victory.
What’s the best way to avoid the traps? Stay close to Father God. Be willing to let go of anything that He whispers to your heart. It can be letting go of wrong mindsets or attitudes. It can be letting go of questions about something that didn’t work out, or letting go of an old relationship. It could even be letting go of a dream that you’ve had so God can give you something better. Don’t let anything keep you from God’s best. You may not always understand, but that’s when you have to trust God’s goodness.
Remember, God always leads us one step at a time in our journey of life. Be open to what He has for you and let Him reposition you. You already have everything you need to be successful in your future, so why hold on to the past? Today set yourself up for freedom and victory by being open-handed, open-minded, and open-hearted to what God has for you!
“Whoever tries to keep their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life will preserve it.” (Luke 17:33, NIV)
GOD IS HEALING OUR LAND
Shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? God forbid. – Romans 3:3-4
Faith-filled words. That’s what changes things. They’ll move mountains into the sea. They’ll turn sickness into health. They’ll turn a sinner into a saint.
They’ll also take a sin-ridden nation and turn it into God’s own country. That’s right. Then, if we believers would back up the prayers we’ve been praying for this nation with words of faith instead of doubt and discouragement, we’d soon begin to see spiritual resurrection in the United States.
God promised us that if we, His people, would humble ourselves and pray and seek His face and turn from our wicked ways, He would heal our land. And let me tell you, there are prayer warriors all over this country (I hope you’re one of them) who are doing what that promise requires.
But, even so, you don’t hear many people saying, “This is great! God is healing the land.” You don’t hear people speaking out by faith the promise of God. Instead, you hear them saying, “Oh my, oh my, did you hear what those terrorists are doing?” or some other destructive thing they’ve seen on television.
Listen, we need to stop preaching what the terrorists are doing and start telling what God is doing! God said He is healing this land.
We must start speaking about this country by faith instead of going around spouting bad news all the time. Of course, that will sound odd to most people. Some of them may even think we’ve slipped a few cogs. But that’s nothing new.
Let me tell you something: One handful of believers who are listening to, trusting in, and speaking out the good news of God are more powerful than all the devils on earth. One handful of believers are more powerful than a whole army of unbelieving doomsayers. Their unbelief will not make the faith of God of no effect!
That’s why we must learn to turn a deaf ear to the bad news and just start praising and thanking God for His deliverance. Every word of praise we speak releases faith in our heart.
Get determined andake a firm stand with us that things are changing in this country. Settle it in your heart as you pray. Speak it out. Call it forth. God is healing the land!
IS THERE ANYTHING TOO HARD FOR GOD?
Genesis 18:14 Is anything too hard for the LORD? At the appointed time I will return to you, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.”
17 ‘Ah, Lord GOD! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. There is nothing too hard for You.
27 “Behold, I am the LORD, the God of all flesh. Is there anything too hard for Me?
Matthew 19:26 But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
Mark 9:23 Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.”
Mark 10:27 But Jesus looked at them and said, “With men it is impossible, but not with God; for with God all things are possible.”
Luke 18:27 But He said, “The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.”
When Joseph was thrown into the pit by his brothers, he believed that God was with him. When Joseph was sold as a slave and ended up in Potiphar’s house, he believed that God was with him. When Joseph was accused of a crime that he didn’t commit and thrown into prison, he still believed that God was with him!
Beloved, if you are going through a tough situation or a trial today, don’t get bitter and don’t give up. Believe that God is with you and be conscious of His loving presence with you!
As God came through for Joseph and promoted him from the pit to the palace, His unmerited favor is also at work in your situation causing all things to work out for your good!
Freedom From Disease and Poverty
Galatians 3:13 says, “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law.” But what does it mean to be redeemed from the curse of the law?
By the death and resurrection of Jesus, He paid the price for you and for me. He became the sacrifice for our sins. He died so that we could live. He bore our sicknesses so we could have health. He redeemed us from the curse of the law of sin and death.
The law as described in the New Testament is usually considered to be the Pentateuch, or more clearly the first five books of the Bible. In these first five books — Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy — the curse or punishment for breaking God’s law is broken down into three basic categories.
1) The curse of spiritual death
2) The curse of sickness and disease
3) The curse of poverty
In Deuteronomy 28:15, the Bible tells us about these curses, saying, “It shall come to pass, if you do not obey the voice of the Lord your God, to observe carefully all His commandments and His statutes which I command you today, that all these curses will come upon you.”
Then it lists curses all the way to verse 60 — forty-five verses of sicknesses and financial disasters that would happen if the law was not kept. In verse 61, the list concludes by saying that not only would these things that were listed happen, but any sickness, disease, or catastrophe that was not listed would happen also.
In other words, not keeping the law was disastrous. But even worse, it was nearly impossible to keep the law. So, poverty, sickness, and spiritual death were virtually assured.
But today, I have good news. When it seemed like there was no hope, God made a way. And that’s just like God. He always makes a way of escape for those who seek Him.
Jesus became our Redeemer. He made a way of escape from poverty, sickness, and spiritual death. However, some Christians do not understand that we have been redeemed from the curse of the law. They accept sickness and poverty as part of the Christian lifestyle. This should not be. We have been set free from the curse of the law. We need to start acting like it.
When you take a coupon to the grocery store, you use it instead of using money. In other words, you redeem the coupon. It takes the place of your money. Your money becomes redeemed because the coupon was the redeemer. Well, that’s what Jesus did.
We had a debt. That debt was the curse of the law. But the problem was that we could not pay the debt. It required a perfect sacrifice. It required a sacrifice that was pure before God. We were not pure. Our debt was impossible to pay.
But then Jesus came to earth as a man and died in our place. He took stripes on His body for our sicknesses. He redeemed us. He paid the debt we could not pay.
When we become a Christian, we have health and prosperity available. We don’t have to be diseased and in poverty. Jesus redeemed us from the curse of the law.
GOD STILL PERFORMS MIRACLES :
Mark 16:20 “And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.”
The Lord confirmed the preaching of His Word with miracles. If Jesus and the first century Christians needed the Word confirmed with the miraculous (Heb. 2:4), then we do too. There is no scripture that says these miraculous signs have passed away.
Some people have interpreted “that which is perfect” in 1 Corinthians 13:10, as being the complete Bible. This has led them to believe that the gifts of the Spirit have ceased. Although God’s Word is perfect (Ps. 19:7), it is not the “perfect thing” that is referred to here. 1 Corinthians 13:8 does say that tongues shall cease, but it will not happen until “that which is perfect is come.”
In 1 Corinthians 13:12, Paul says, “when that which is perfect is come, we shall see face to face.” This speaks of seeing the Lord face to face, instead of vaguely, as through a dark glass, as it is now. Some might argue that this is speaking in a symbolic sense, instead of literally face to face. But the next comparison in this verse says that then, “when that which is perfect is come,” we shall know all things even as we are also known. There is no other way to interpret this, except as a description of when we will stand before the Lord, after this life. Then we will be face to face, and know all things even as also we are known.
Verse eight says that at the time prophecies fail and tongues cease, knowledge will vanish away. This is talking about the next life, or the new heavens and earth, because one of the signs of the end times is that knowledge shall increase (Dan. 12:4).
So the “that which is perfect” that Paul speaks of, cannot be the Bible. It has to be either our glorified body, or Jesus at His second coming. Either way, these verses establish that until “that which is perfect is come,” tongues and prophecy will remain. They are still valid gifts, and even today, it is God’s will to accompany the preaching of His Word with miracles.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY :
“The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display His craftsmanship.” (Psalm 19:1)
Good morning dear Lord God, I praise You. I honor You. This is the day the Lord has made; let use rejoice and be glad in it. I sing You a new song on this glorious day O God, for You have done great things in me. I know Your plans for me is to prosper me and not to harm me; plans to give me hope and future. May God impart me wisdom and knowledge and sustain me with Your right hand throughout my sojourn on this earth. Make me Your humble servant, a blessings channel and a brilliant masterpiece on Your hand.
Gratefully, in Jesus’ holy name. Amen !!!
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