Do You Know Him?
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It was 2 a.m. when a knock came at the door of the old farmhouse where I lived as a child. Who would be knocking on the door in the middle of the night, I wondered, as I clutched the bed covers a bit closer.
Then I heard my dad, in the next room, stumble out of bed and make his way across the dark bedroom to the front door, where he was greeted with an urgent plea from a fellow minister.
I could not understand all their conversation at the time – only that it was urgent and that my dad was needed to come to a church immediately to pray with someone. So he went out into the darkness. And we laid in bed and prayed, too, because we knew there must be a serious need to bring someone out into the middle of the night to awaken an entire household.
As a preacher’s daughter, my dad was called to pray for many people in all manner of situations. Often it was praying for the sick at a nursing home or hospital. Sometimes it was praying with someone at a home or funeral home, where they had lost a loved one. But on this particular night, it was a call to pray for the deliverance of someone from a demon spirit. (The person was delivered).
In Acts 19, we read about the Apostle Paul ministering in Ephesus, which was located near the western shores of modern-day Turkey. While there, he “preached boldly” and even had daily discussions at the lecture hall of Tyrannus. This intense sharing of the Gospel led to both Jews and Greeks hearing the word of the Lord.
There were also many miracles performed, resulting in healings and evil spirits being expelled, according to.
On one occasion, the Word (in verses 13-16) even records how seven sons of Sceva, a leading priest, were trying to likewise cast out evil spirits – commanding them “in the name of Jesus, whom Paul preaches, to come out!”
But the evil spirit refused to comply, saying to them, “I know Jesus, and I know Paul, but who are you?” Then the evil spirit commenced to attack them so violently that they had to run away, naked and battered.
...This story reminds me of how people often want to bypass the process of knowing Jesus — the one who baptizes us in the Holy Spirit. They just want to operate in the power of God without a true relationship with God.
Relationship is not something that just happens all at once. It must be built in the quiet moments alone with our Savior while reading His word and drinking in His Presence.
Absolutely, God wants to empower us to do the work He has called us to do for His Kingdom. But we must remember that this is for His Kingdom and not our own. It is for His fame and not ours.
Dear Heavenly Father, We thank You for the gift of salvation through belief in Jesus Christ. And we thank You for the gift of the Holy Spirit, who empowers us to be Your witnesses throughout all the earth. Help us never take those gifts for granted. Help us seek that relationship with You, first and foremost, instead of just seeking the benefits of knowing You. You want to set us free so we may be able to point others to that freedom. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
Scripture is quoted from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
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