Teenside Daily Devotional

Read Matthew 8:28-34.

For me, this will forever be one of the strangest passages in the Bible. Why is this here? Firstly, we can again see Jesus’ authority as the Son of God. He has the ability to command the demons, and they show a clear amount of fear towards him. In James 2:19, we see that demons do in fact believe in God and they “shudder” or fear Him. Here, the demons also give insight into the future, as they know that a day will come when they will be judged and punished for their actions. And although this is the case, we may see even a little bit of compassion for them from Jesus. He could simply have cast them out of the men and left them to wander, yet he hears them out and grants them the permission that they seek. I wondered why Jesus would show any sympathy at all towards them when I remembered that in Matthew 5:44-45, Jesus says that God shows some level of blessing towards the evil and the good, for He created them all. Finally, the loss of such a large herd of pigs (about 2,000 according to Mark 5:13) causes the people of this region to drive Jesus away. He knew he would experience rejection, and he warns us many times that we will too. The works of God are not always received well by the world, but we are called to persevere anyway!

*Take a moment to journal these questions. Write down your thoughts, questions, and concerns. Then date your entry. One of the coolest things is being able to look back and see how God came through for you.*

  1. First and foremost, it is important to recognize that the demons tremble at the authority of Jesus. We tend to think of the spiritual realm as equal opposite forces that are warring with each other. However, the bible is very clear that the forces with us are greater than those against us. (Luke 10:19) How does knowing this equip you to face each day?

  1. It is hard to understand why Jesus chose to grant the demons their request. However, that may not be something for us to understand. We can clearly see Jesus’s heart for people in this story because He chooses to release two men kept captive to demons that had made them extremely dangerous. In fact, they were so dangerous that they were exiled by society, and were probably very dangerous to themselves as well. In the end, we see that these two men were more valuable to Jesus than His societal acceptance. He chooses to be rejected to free the rejected. Have you ever made a decision, because it was the right thing to do, that caused you to be rejected by people? Are there places of popularity that you need to be willing to give up in order to seek the Kingdom of God?

Prayer: Spend some time praying about the things you journaled. Praise God for his authority and the power He has given us to bring His kingdom to Earth. Ask God to open your eyes to the forces that are with you. They are so much greater than the ones against you. Pray for the ability to give up popularity in order to chase after God with everything you have. Thank Jesus for the example He gives us of this in scripture. He was rejected, so we can turn to Him, knowing He has experienced the same feelings of rejection.

Song: Authority- Elevation Worship
Spotify Playlist: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/169Fs68hROYRdS362T8D9w
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