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Daily Reading: 2 Kings 15:1-16:20 ESV, Acts 19:13-41 ESV, Psalm 147:1-20 ESV, Proverbs 18:4-5 ESV

Daily Verse: “Then some of the itinerant Jewish exorcists undertook to invoke the name of the Lord Jesus over those who had evil spirits, saying, “I adjure you by the Jesus whom Paul proclaims.” (Acts 19:13 ESV)

EXORKISTES (1845): “From 1844; one that binds by an oath (or spell), i.e. (by impl.) an “exorcist” (conjurer)-exorcist (1x).”[I]

One that binds.

People created magical names to drive out evil spirits, exorcists in ancient times.  Placing Jesus in the same category as the other names, some Jews from Ephesus tried imitating Paul.  Jesus’s name has power, but only if you believe in Him.  The Jews wanted Jesus’ powers without submitting their lives to Him.  The evil spirit knew they didn’t represent Jesus.

“But the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and Paul I recognize, but who are you?” And the man in whom was the evil spirit leaped on them, mastered all of them and overpowered them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.” (Acts 19:15-16 ESV)

Know Jesus.

Many people use Jesus’ name in different ways.  People represent God’s Son based on the relationship they have with Him.  Some people who talk the loudest about Jesus know Him the least and can easily misrepresent the Messiah.  Others know Christ so well everyone who enters their presence meets Jesus.

Now living in heaven, Charlotte Shoup had the softest voice, the warmest hugs, and made the best sugar cookies I’ve ever eaten.  Her love of the Lord shined through her actions as she loved those God placed before her.  Spending time with her lifted anyone’s spirits, leaving smiles on their faces—Jesus in the flesh.

Represent Christ well by pursuing a relationship with Him first and foremost.  Read the stories of people who spent time with Him.  Find yourself in the narrative as you relate to the characters within the tale.  Like Peter, we’ve loved and betrayed Jesus, yet Christ calls us by name, one of His flock.

And the evil spirits will recognize Christ in you, just as they did Paul.

[i] Strong, J., & Strong, J. (2010). The New Strong’s expanded exhaustive concordance of the Bible. Greek Dictionary of the New Testament (p. 92) Thomas Nelson

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