Dominion over Darkness
In Luke 8 we witness a progression of Jesus’ manifested power. Jesus laid down His divine nature when He came to earth. He willfully chose to live life as we live. He was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of a woman. He grew from a baby into a man and experienced life as we experience it. He developed and modeled a relationship with God through the same means and power we do today. Jesus said, “whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father.”
In Luke 8 Jesus steps out of the boat onto the Gergesa shore in Gentile country. There Jesus encounters a man who was banished from society. Most people would have avoided this man and pretending not to see him. With the disciples in tow Jesus approaches the man who was chained and naked. Immediately the presence of Jesus evoked a reaction from the evil spirits who had possessed him.
Jesus asked the spirit what his name was and he replied “Legion, for we are many”. In Roman days a legion of soldiers was 6,000 men. Whether this man had 6,000 evil spirits in him the reality is that he was overpowered beyond his own ability to be free.
With a single word Jesus commanded those spirits to leave and at once this man who was being tormented was now in his right mind! Jesus demonstrated the power of God over a “legion” of demons. As followers of Jesus Christ, we have His authority and the power of the Holy Spirit to take back what the enemy has stolen.
This power and authority comes by discipline. Discipline requires repetition. The purpose of discipline is to align our actions with God’s word. Commit to the process and the power will come. Here are three disciplines that will unleash the authority and power of God in your life.
#1 A commitment to the word of God. We don’t need more information but transformation. The word alive in us is the word that directs our life. Transformation permits us to see life through the lens of faith, not human logic.
#2 A commitment to prayer. The word fuels prayer. When Jesus was attacked by Satan in the desert he refuted him with the word. Our prayers are not powerful because of the volume or longevity of our words but because we pray God’s word.
#3 A commitment to love. Love is not simply a feeling, emotion or expression. Love goes even deeper than that. It was love for God that caused Jesus to approach the man that everyone had abandoned. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 13:1 that without love, “…I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.” Love allows us to see what God sees and equips us to do what Jesus did.
In the words of Pastor Silvia, “Something that doesn’t challenge you doesn’t change you.” Commit to these three disciples and even when it doesn’t feel effective continue to allow the process to perfect itself in you.