Acts 19:11-20 Making God Number One in Your Life
11 God did extraordinary miracles through Paul, 12 so that even handkerchiefs and aprons that had touched him were taken to the sick, and their illnesses were cured and the evil spirits left them.
13 Some Jews who went around driving out evil spirits tried to invoke the name of the Lord Jesus over those who were demon-possessed. They would say, “In the name of the Jesus whom Paul preaches, I command you to come out.” 14 Seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this. 15 One day the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know about, but who are you?” 16 Then the man who had the evil spirit jumped on them and overpowered them all. He gave them such a beating that they ran out of the house naked and bleeding.
17 When this became known to the Jews and Greeks living in Ephesus, they were all seized with fear, and the name of the Lord Jesus was held in high honor. 18 Many of those who believed now came and openly confessed what they had done. 19 A number who had practiced sorcery brought their scrolls together and burned them publicly. When they calculated the value of the scrolls, the total came to fifty thousand drachmas. 20 In this way the word of the Lord spread widely and grew in power.
Living God’s Word: As the Ephesian believers realized, one cannot be a believer in Jesus and hold on to the occult, black magic, or sorcery. Once a person begins to dabble in these areas, it is extremely easy to become obsessed by them because Satan is very powerful. But God’s power is even greater (1 John 4:4; Revelation 20:10). If you are mixed up in the occult, or anything outside of God, learn a lesson from the Ephesians, and get rid of anything that could keep you trapped in such practices.
Words to Live By: God continues to work through mighty miracles and His Word. Magic, the occult, and even using our Lord’s name as an expression of good luck are all sins against the Second Commandment. By the power of Jesus’ name, you have been forgiven of all sin (2:38) and rescued from the fiercest evil, the devil himself! Jesus gives you life in His name alone.
Prayer: “Create in me a new heart, Lord, That gladly I obey Your Word. Let what You will be my desire, And with new life my soul inspire.” Amen.
Living and Sharing the Word of God… because it matters!
Pastor Rod Lindemann
JourneyMen – Get on the Journey!
The Holy Bible: New International Version. (2011). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan
Words to Live by and Prayer: Engelbrecht, E. A. (2009). The Lutheran Study Bible (2002). St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House. Purchase a copy of The Lutheran Study Bible at www.cph.org or contact Rod Lindemann.
Living God’s Word: Adapted from Life Application, Barton, B. B. Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers.