Among The Tombs


     "So they arrived in the land of the Gerasenes, across the lake from Galilee.  As Jesus was climbing out of the boat, a man possessed by demons came out to meet Him.  Homeless and naked, he had lived among the tombs for a long time." ...."Where satan has his way, people live among the tombs."  Beth Moore
     Moore's words resonate in my spirit this morning as I realize how terribly true they are.  Scripture tells us that the man who met Jesus was demon possessed.  In our "enlightened" 21st century western culture, there are many who believe that wasn't really the case.  That Jesus was actually dealing with a mentally unbalanced person, and that the unlearned, unsophisticated people of that day mistakenly called it demon possession.  There are times when a little bit of knowledge really is a dangerous thing and this is one of them.  The demons were real, and so was the possession.  We can rationalize all we want, but we can't make scripture say what we'd like it to say.  Still, my purpose is not to prove the enemy's existence.  We need only examine the world we live in for that.  Nor do I want to focus on demon possession, real as it is.  No, I wish to point to something far more prevalent, and perhaps, even more dangerous and crippling.  I think the great work of the enemy against His people is not possession at all, but oppression.  I don't believe the enemy can possess a child of the King, but we can be oppressed by him, and so many are.  Might you or I be among them?
     Moore said that where satan has his way, people live among the tombs, and she is spot on in that statement.  There are so many who continue to live among the tombs of their past failures, losses, disappointments, sins.  Divorce, betrayal, defeat, grief, abuse, death of a cherished loved one.  All of them may have happened to us years ago, decades ago.  A lifetime ago.  Yet they continue to hold us.  They are tombs that we continue to live among. Their power over us seems absolute.  They oppress us, torment us.  Seek to destroy us.  As long as we continue to live among them, they'll succeed.  Our enemy, who loves to dwell among the tombs with us, rejoices to see us there.  Tormenting, oppressing, crippling.  He loves to work these things into our lives.  Yet to the tombs that we live among, comes Jesus.
     When Jesus asked the demon who possessed the man what his name was, he replied "Legion, for we are many."  A legion could be as few as a thousand, and as many as ten thousand, yet the great truth here is that all of that dark power was powerless in the presence of Christ.  With a word Jesus commanded them to leave the man, and they did.  Immediately he was whole. "Clothed and sane," he left the tombs, living there no longer.  Will we?  Jesus called Lazarus out of his tomb of death.  He calls us out from among our tombs of death.  Will we come?  Will we live among them no more?  Christ has come to those tombs to bring us out.  Will we go with Him?  Will we leave a life among the tombs for a life in the midst of His Kingdom?  The tombs of the past have no power in the face of the Christ of the present.  We need live no longer among them if we will choose to truly live within Him.

Pastor O
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   May 2019   
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