The Book of Luke, God’s Clear Evidence that Produced Various Verdicts, Part II - Lesson 143
Last week we studied the reactions of certain members of a crowd to the work of Jesus Christ who cast out a devil from a man, a devil who kept the man from speaking.
All the people wondered and could not conclude otherwise that a miracle had occurred, for here was a man well known as a dumb man, a man who could not speak, who was now speaking before them.
A devil had bound his tongue and Jesus Christ had cast out that devil and therefore a tongue was now loosed to speak.
Was glory to God given, was there general agreement as to what had taken place?
No, for there were many agendas which the people of this event had to filter though before a conclusion was arrived at.
Most people do this when evaluating things.
We see this every time we watch a news program and listen to those from the right and those from the left.
Religious people do this, liberals and fundamentalists also do this.
Every event is filtered through their agenda.
How does this event fit my agenda, how does this fit my mindset for I do not want my mind upset.
My mind is fixed and I will not have it upset.
But the Child of God, the Christian, who loves truth evaluates events though the filter of God’s word to come to the right conclusion.
Some said that Jesus Christ cast out this devil though the power of Beelzebub the chief of the devils.
Others, the fence straddlers, said they could not come to a conclusion about Jesus until there was a sign from heaven.
Jesus Christ knew the thoughts of all and told them that the idea of Satan using his powers against himself was foolish for no kingdom fights against itself and stands.
That is against all reasonableness.
He also brought this argument to a personal level by asking the question of those whose children cast out devils, for as we showed last week some Jews were casting out devils in Jesus name.
The question of Jesus Christ rang in their skeptic’s ears.
by whom do your sons cast them out? therefore shall they be your judges.
Go to your sons and ask them by whom do they cast out devils?
He then challenged the doubters and the skeptics by telling them that the conclusion of the matter is that Jesus Christ cast out devils by the power of God and because that is true no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you.
This is not the end of his discourse for he brings additional, indisputable reasoning into the debate.
For he says in: Luke 11:21‑23, When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace: 22But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils. 23He that is not with me is against me: and he that gathereth not with me scattereth.
The second argument of Jesus is just as forceful as the first.
Not only were Jesus’ opponents wrong in attributing His power to Satan because Satan would not attack himself, they were also wrong because the One who would have victory over Satan must be more powerful then Satan.
The Old Testament scriptures brings this out very powerfully for it tells without compromise who is the power with which Satan has to deal.
Isaiah 49:24‑26, Shall the prey be taken from the mighty, or the lawful captive delivered? 25But thus saith the LORD, Even the captives of the mighty shall be taken away, and the prey of the terrible shall be delivered: for I will contend with him that contendeth with thee, and I will save thy children. 26And I will feed them that oppress thee with their own flesh; and they shall be drunken with their own blood, as with sweet wine: and all flesh shall know that I the LORD am thy Saviour and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob.
This example of the deliverance of this Satan bound one is another fact to add to the ledger column which proclaims Jesus as the Messiah of God, the mighty one of Jacob who defeats Satan.
Jesus compared His deliverance of the demon‑possessed to the ravaging of a powerful enemy (cf.).
No one can take away the possessions of a powerful man without first overpowering the powerful.
The powerful man must first be overpowered, then disarmed, and finally bound, so that his goods can be taken.
In this comparison, Satan is the strong man and his “possessions” are the demon‑possessed and Jesus is the One who has greater power and is taking away those he has possessed.
Jesus is saying that He must overpower Satan before He can deliver those whom he had formerly possessed.
His enemies refused to recognize that Jesus was God or that
His power was God’s power, and yet logic would once again force them to this conclusion.
In order to deliver men and women from demon‑possession Jesus had to be greater, had to be more powerful than Satan for Satan was the master of the demons.
To credit His power to Satan was a foolish argument.
To think He was not greater than Satan was also foolish.
If the evidence were interpreted according to reason, the evidence clearly points to Jesus as the Messiah.
Jesus does not stop here but continues to challenge the logic of His critics with another condemnation.
Not only is Satan Jesus’ enemy, not only are His opponents who credit His power to Satan His enemies, but all who do not rightly respond to Him.
For he says: He that is not with me is against me: and he that gathereth not with me scattereth.
Verse 23 is saying that those who were negative to Jesus were His enemies, but also those who were neutral were his enemies.
An author by the name of Nathaniel Norton in the early part of the 1900’s captured this thought in a hymn called “What will you do with Jesus?”
One verse and the refrain read like this.
Jesus is standing in Pilate's hall,