Shut-up and leave!

August 6, 2004

Shut-up and leave!

Mark 1st Chapter
23 “And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out,
24 Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? Art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God.
25 And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him.”

Have you ever meditated on why the principalities of hell desire to talk to you? Some people believe that the devil or demons do not talk directly to people. However, there are many examples that we can use as evidence to prove that these principalities converse with us. Anytime that a person is talked out of doing what God has told him/her to do, hell is speaking. Surprisingly enough, these principalities also talk to us to save themselves. Yes, beloved of God, these principalities are all about survival, and they will say and do whatever they can, even flatter you, all just to survive .

These flattering words are used to get us to drop our guard and let the demonic and the satanic within our defenses. They puff you up when you are deflated. They build you up when you don’t think much about yourself. Sometimes, they even inflate an over-inflated ego. Jesus himself had to deal with the flattering words, but He did so swiftly. He did not let them “tickle His ears” nor “inflate His ego.”

Our text tells us of an incident where Jesus was face to face with an unclean spirit. The first words from the unclean spirit were, “Let us alone.” Now, we all know that upon the arrival of Jesus, this spirit was in trouble, and the spirit knew that too. This is why the spirit then said in desperation, “Why are you bothering us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us?” (New Living Testament Translation). Now quite honestly, Jesus had not done anything to the spirit yet. All He did was show up. That’s it. His mere presence was enough to upset hell’s representative. But let’s look at the tactic this unclean spirit tried to use to get out of its predicament.

This spirit goes on to tell Jesus, “I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God.” Now if we look closely at these words, they might look like words of praise. And if we uttered these words with sincerity, they would be words of praise. But what makes these words flattery is the motive behind them. The words may be true, but the motive is not true. Without any doubt, Jesus is the Holy One of God, but the unclean spirit was only saying this to get something out of the deal.

So how did Jesus deal with this spirit? Basically by saying two things: (1) “hold thy peace” and (2) “come out of him.” In short, Jesus told this spirit, “Shut-up and leave!” What I really like about Jesus’ actions is that He shows us the authority that we have as over satan and his cohorts. If satan is telling us things to tickle our ears, we have the authority to tell him, “shut-up and leave.” We don’t have to hear from him that divorce is an option and that the grass is greener on the other side. All we have to tell him is, “Shut-up and leave!” We don’t have to receive the demonic pats on the back that tell us, “It’s O.K. to fail; maybe you weren’t cut out for that anyway. You really don’t need to try again.” All we have to tell him is, “Shut-up and leave!”

We don’t need the pseudo-praises of hell nor the flattery of demons, which lead to destruction, detours, and discouragement. Flattery is a weapon in the devil’s arsenal because he fears you. Yes, child of God, the devil fears you and what you have the potential to do to him and his works. He will “butter you up” to “blow you away.” So beware of those “kind” words from hell and learn to discern “where” what is being said to you is coming from. Hell would prefer you to leave a defeated life, but God prefers you to live a life of dominion. And you have the dominion, power, and authority to tell the devil, “Shut-up and leave!”