Posts Tagged ‘Evil’


Acts 23:1-5
Paul looked straight at the Sanhedrin and said, “My brothers, I have fulfilled my duty to God in all good conscience to this day.” At this the high priest Ananias ordered those standing near Paul to strike him on the mouth. Then Paul said to him, “God will strike you, you whitewashed wall! You sit there to judge me according to the law, yet you yourself violate the law by commanding that I be struck!” Those who were standing near Paul said, “You dare to insult God’s high priest?” Paul replied, “Brothers, I did not realize that he was the high priest; for it is written: ‘Do not speak evil about the ruler of your people.’”

What a tense many moments that must have been for Paul and his accusers. Paul’s statement of completing God’s will did not go well with Ananias who ordered he be hit on the mouth for such an utterance. Paul reacted because he knew Ananias was making a mistake of calling on judgment without a decision being made on whether he was guilty or free because Ananias, as President of the Sanhedrin, could only pronounce judgment on the accused when proven guilty. All of this changes when someone from the crowd reminds Paul that Ananias needs to be respected and Paul corrects himself. Was Paul wrong in condemning Ananias and what is the Lord speaking to us through this?

Paul was aware that there were a few among his accusers who might be open to the gospel and instead of confusing them chose to correct himself. However, we have to note that he does not apologize to Ananias but only corrects himself for speaking against those in authority as is taught in the Bible. For a man wrongfully accused, he certainly showed grace in the midst of persecution and this is not something that comes naturally to us. I am reminded today that in this life there will be trouble because we stand up with Jesus against the forces of evil and we are to always remember that we are to be lighthouses for Christ in this dark world. We are mirrors of God’s love to those who need him and our joy is to serve God with our all.

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy


Mark 5:2,3,12,13a,25,27,29,41,42a
When Jesus got out of the boat, a man with an evil spirit came from the tombs to meet him. This man lived in the tombs, and no one could bind him any more, not even with a chain… The demons begged Jesus, “Send us among the pigs; allow us to go into them.” He gave them permission, and the evil spirits came out and went into the pigs… a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years… When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak… Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering… He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!”. Immediately the girl stood up and walked around.

Every morning before I read the word, I spend time in prayer and I often reflect on the word as not just God’s word for me and you today but as words that are life giving, life altering and life transforming. Chance and luck are words often used to give hope to people because there are things outside of our control and we know we cannot exercise control over those things. Like when someone is going for an exam, they are told best of luck as if they would only do better by luck and not effort. I am guilty of this too because these are common statements that are part of our vocabulary and we need to get rid of it.

In today’s passage (a mish-mash of verses from Chapter 5) it is evident how Jesus was not only a miracle worker but that his dominion was over the forces of evil and even over death, something only God can do. You might wonder what faith it is that these people exercised to have Jesus work such miracles in their lives but there is no special something they did which we cannot do. All of the seekers were genuine in their need and they all went to Jesus knowing he is able. For Jesus, being the Son of God, all things are possible and when we completely submit our pains, needs and problems to him, he choses to bless us in ways he sees fit. Sometimes with healing, sometimes with patience, sometimes with silence but every time in ways that are his and not ours. Next time you want to wish someone, wish them God’s blessing and then pray for their need. Lets be prayer warriors to permit God to continue to work miraculously in our broken world. Are you up to the challenge?

In His Loving Service,
Vineet

Light at the End of the Tunnel