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Daily Reading: 2 Kings 8:1-9:13 ESV, Acts 16:16-40 ESV, Psalm 143:1-12 ESV, Proverbs 17:26 ESV

Daily Verse: “As we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a slave girl who had a spirit of divination and brought her owners much gain by fortune-telling.” (Acts 16:16 ESV)

PUTHON (4436): “In Greek mythology was the name of Pythian serpent or dragon, dwelling in Pytho, at the foot of mount Parnassus, guarding the oracle of Delphi, and slain by Apollo.  Thence the name was transferred to Apollo himself.  Later the word was applied to diviners or soothsayers, regarded as inspired by Apollo.  Since devils are the agents inspiring idolatry, 1 Cor 10:20, the young woman in Acts 16:16 was possessed by a devil instigating the cult of Apollo, and thus had “a spirit of divination.”[i]

Inspiring idolatry.

Divination worships something other than God; anything we worship more than Jesus becomes an idol.  In this case, Greek gods originate the spirit of divination found in the slave girl.  Fortune telling makes a lot of money.  “Psychic” signs sit in business windows across the United States.  Interesting how you must pay psychics, but Christ gives us His gift for free.

When the fortune telling girl annoyed Paul, he commanded the spirit to leave her; it did so immediately.  Her owners lost their best money maker, so they dragged Paul and Silas before the magistrates.  One of the many times Paul endured a beating for Jesus.

Unrestrained grace.

Christ offers His grace freely to everyone, no cost attached, completely unrestrained.  Fortune tellers make money from their connection to the spiritual world.  Spirits exist other than the Holy One.  People choose which ones they let into their lives.

Friends with a metaphysical minister, a psychic, we’ve had many spiritual discussions.  She charges her clients hundreds of dollars for her services.  When she exorcises demons from a house, she has a flat rate she charges, plus travel expenses.

Jesus came from heaven to earth at no cost to anyone.  He died on the cross for all, salvation free for any who accepted it.  Meeting the needs of others becomes our calling, not our income.  Jesus didn’t charge us for His spirit; the Holy Spirit comes to those who believe.

As I told my psychic friend one night when she tried to convince me to tap into her spiritual world, “The only spirit I want in me is Jesus.  I’m all Holy Spirit; I don’t want any others residing in me.”

Let the Holy Spirit take up residence in you.  Christ fills the empty void we all have.  In Him, you’ll find the fullness of life you can find no other way.

[i] Strong, J., & Strong, J. (2010). The New Strong’s expanded exhaustive concordance of the Bible. Greek Dictionary of the New Testament (pp. 218-19) Thomas Nelson

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