Saturday, December 26, 2015

Personal Sabotage?

It seems to me that the deaf and dumb spirit that Jesus cast out in Mark 9 was a self-destructive spirit--a spirit of personal sabotage so to speak. This was the spirit that Jesus said would only come out by prayer and fasting. But let's back up a bit. Jesus had taken Peter, James and John up in the mountain where He was transfigured before them. Elijah and Moses appeared and spoke with Him. Peter thought it would be a good idea to make three tabernacles, one for each of them. He said this because "he did not know what to answer; for they became terrified;" (Mark 9:6). Just then a cloud formed and overshadowed them and a voice came out of the cloud:

"This is My beloved Son, listen to Him!" 

I imagine that quieted the disciples for a bit. They came down the mountain and the crowd ran up to Jesus. A man in the crowd told Him that he brought his son who was possessed with a spirit to his disciples for deliverance but they couldn't cast him out. This spirit, whom Jesus called a deaf and mute spirit, would seize the man's son, slam him to the ground and would often throw him into the fire and water to try and destroy him. This deaf and mute spirit seems intent on destroying the person it possesses. It may appear as self-destructive or personal sabotage. 

Jesus said it comes out only by prayer and fasting. I think this kind of prayer and fasting is more than us talking non-stop to God without taking time to listen to Him. This is evidenced by what they had just experienced on the mountain top. God had spoken from the cloud and said to listen to His Son! When we don't know what to say, we may just need to listen. To have victory over the attacks that would try and destroy a person, even self-destructive actions, we need to listen to the Lord.

Jesus spoke of those whose heart was dull, their ears couldn't hear and their eyes were closed. These people would not be able to receive from the Lord. But He said of His disciples, "Blessed are your eyes, because they see; and your ears because they hear." (Matthew 13:15-16). Lord, may we remember to be quiet before You and listen!

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