Message Magazine’s Online Devotional for Thursday, April 23, 2015
Based Upon Acts 19
Name-dropping is such an obnoxious habit. You’ve encountered these people: You know, the ones who want to impress you by slyly mentioning the name of someone with whom you might be impressed in order to validate their associations, products, or services. While some name-droppers know the people they mention, most are just hoping to swindle you into believing they actually have something of value to offer, when they really don’t. Their connection is hollow at best.
What happens when our lives are flooded with a deluge of trials and we know people whose connection with God is strong, but ours is not? Will their strength carry us through? I know what some of you are thinking: “When I am weak, my friends can pray for me.” This is true.
The Bible encourages us to intercede for one another and be supportive when our brothers and sisters are in need.
However, there are people who refuse to pray, and think the prayers of others will make them holy. There are people who refuse to study the Word of God for themselves, but think that overhearing great sermons on occasion will be sufficient to keep them when the times get rough. There are those who refuse to embrace fellowship with believers and God during weekly church services and repeatedly hearken back to some childhood event when they got “saved.” Our God is a Present Help in trouble. He is our daily Manna who comes down to nourish us with spiritual food. He is our Personal Redeemer who is able to keep us from falling.
Our theme chapter highlights what happens when we get into the ring with the devil thinking we can namedrop our way through a fight with him. The Bible says, “Then certain of the vagabond Jews, exorcists, took upon them to call over them which had evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, We adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preacheth. And there were seven sons of one Sceva, a Jew, and chief of the priests, which did so. And the evil spirit answered and said, Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye? And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, and overcame them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.” (Acts 19:13–16). The moral of this story is have a daily relationship with God for yourself and all will be well, but simply saying the name of Jesus in a sentence with no vital connection with Him, is a detriment to spiritual health.
The great thing about God is that He is still available today, to accept you into fellowship with Him.
As you choose daily to abide in Him, He will fight your battles.
When trials come, He will always step in and supply the help you need. Never, ever go to battle with the enemy in your own strength. Jesus defeated him in heaven. Jesus defeated him at the cross. Jesus defeated him at the empty tomb. Jesus will defeat him in the lake of fire. Why not let Jesus defeat him in your life? He has a proven track record with outstanding results.