After such a great insight on prayer, Luke moves to another critical kingdom topic, unity. Jesus was crossing Israel and simply teaching truth and restoring lives. The religious leaders could not stand it. They hated the competition, but worse, they hated seeing God working and them not getting the glory for it. So, on this day, Jesus drives a demon out of a man that has closed his mouth. When Jesus drives the demon out, of course, the man starts praising God. The Jewish leaders start accusing Jesus of driving demons out by the power of the head demon–Satan.
Jesus laughs at them. He reminds them that a house divided against itself will not stand. Satan defeating Satan is a ridiculous proposition. What Jesus does not say; but clearly infers, however, is “It is almost as ridiculous as God’s religious leadership attacking God’s Messiah…” Jesus does call them out, however, He points out that if God is using Him to drive out demons, they would have to admit that He is sent by God. They would rather make a ridiculous statement than do that. I am sure it was painful to see such self-righteous men miss God when God was standing among them!
In our world, we see the same disunity. Churches get bent and divided when great things are happening–simply because the great things are not following leadership’s Standard Operating Procedure. SOP is code for the leadership is not getting the credit. As a family, God’s people must unify, pray, and live in a manner worthy of the Gospel. We must be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. We must walk as Christ’s ambassadors. We live and speak in a way that brings God glory and honor. In that life, the church will endure and grow to lead the world to a relationship with God. We will be that nation of priests that God had in mind when He chose us as His own.
Unity with a focus on God will win the day. That can only happen if we will cling to the notion that God is God, and we are not!
God Bless You
Jesus was driving out a demon that was mute. When the demon left, the man who had been mute spoke, and the crowd was amazed. 15 But some of them said, “By Beelzebul, the prince of demons, he is driving out demons.” 16 Others tested him by asking for a sign from heaven.
17 Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them: “Any kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and a house divided against itself will fall. 18 If Satan is divided against himself, how can his kingdom stand? I say this because you claim that I drive out demons by Beelzebul. 19 Now if I drive out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your followers drive them out? So then, they will be your judges. 20 But if I drive out demons by the finger of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.
21 “When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own house, his possessions are safe. 22 But when someone stronger attacks and overpowers him, he takes away the armor in which the man trusted and divides up his plunder.
23 “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.
24 “When an impure spirit comes out of a person, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ 25 When it arrives, it finds the house swept clean and put in order. 26 Then it goes and takes seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that person is worse than the first.”
27 As Jesus was saying these things, a woman in the crowd called out, “Blessed is the mother who gave you birth and nursed you.”
28 He replied, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it.”