The Gospel of Mark | Identity Revealed | Mark 1.21-24 |

by | Oct 2, 2023

‘They went to Capernaum, and when the Sabbath came, Jesus went into the synagogue and began to teach. 22 The people were amazed at his teaching, because he taught them as one who had authority, not as the teachers of the law. 23 Just then a man in their synagogue who was possessed by an impure spirit cried out, 24 “What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God!” Mark 1.21-24

I have always found it ironic how in Jesus very first time of teaching in the Synagogue — as he was teaching with authority — a man who was demon possessed spoke up. Why is this not happening more in our churches now? Are we not preaching with authority?

But really, it’s Jesus first public teaching. He’s in Capernaum, on the Sea of Galilee, in the region where he grew up, and he goes into the synagogue to teach. And the people are amazed at his teaching. They saw the immediate difference between his words and the words of their teachers of the law. Guess who shows up? A demon inside of man who reveals the identity of Jesus before anyone else does!

This man says, “What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God!” Now we will see Jesus’ response to him in the next passage, but consider what the demon says — he calls him by name, he asks his purpose, he reveals his true identity. This was way before Peter said, “You are the Christ.” No one knew who Jesus was (save Mary and perhaps a few others) but it was not publicly known. But the demon knew. Jesus was shaking up heaven and earth and the spirits knew it. And his identity was revealed.

I find it a little sad that a demon called Jesus out before anyone else had a chance! But it makes sense if we understand the supernatural and the hidden spiritual realm in which the demon existed. This was a realm Jesus operated in frequently. We only see occasional signs of this realm when an angel or demon shows up, but Jesus knew the realm was real and it knew he had the authority to speak into it.

Jesus went to the synagogue to teach, its a synagogue I’ve been too several times before. Actually, when you go to this synagogue now you only see the foundation of the one where Jesus taught — another was been built upon it. But Jesus was there to proclaim the good news to the Jews and in doing so, interfere from the demon realm crept up during his sermon.

Sometimes we get interrupted by evil. Even when we are doing the work of God, the devil like to show his ugly head. And yet, this did not stop Jesus. He had authority to preach and he has authority to shut up the demons. And in the same way, so do we. We are children of God, made in his image, created for a purpose by his grace and for his glory.

My encouragement to you is this — when you are doing God’s good work and the enemy tries to shut you down, shut him up! Call on the name of Jesus – the precious blood that covered your sins and mind. And continue to do that work which the Lord has called you to do — the work of testifying to the grace of God.

“O Lord God, you are good. Thank you for loving us. Thank you for the kindness of your word and the power of your witness. Thank you for defeating sin and the devil upon the cross. He has no power or authority. But it has been given to you Lord Jesus, and you have given it to your people. Come now, Holy Spirit, fall upon me and help me find salvation in you. For you are good and your love endures forever.” Amen