Facing Our Demons | The Daily Memo | March 7, 2024

Sometimes good counselors or other wise guides help us discover subconscious motivators that drive how we act. For example, experiences of abuse can often lock us in shame or fear and drive us into destructive patterns of thought and behavior. It’s almost like the traumatic event invited an evil spirit into our interior world, one that continues to control us with things like fear, rage, self-loathing, or shame. These internal realities remain powerful until we face them, expose them, and deal with them.

Jesus shows up in the world, in part, to display God’s power to cast out evil spirits and heal people from destructive patterns of thought and behavior. He’s confronting peoples’ demons—both literal and metaphorical—at every turn. When we encounter stories about demons in the pages of the New Testament, it can be difficult to interpret them because they don’t fit into our modern perspectives. But while the New Testament may not answer all of our questions about how the demonic spiritual realm works, it shows Jesus’ unmistakable desire to liberate us from anything that binds us.

Jesus extends a patient, healing posture to all who are suffering. He preserves the person and throws evil out, setting people free from the internal demons that drive them to darkness.

Today, we do not have Jesus in the flesh to hold us close and speak powerful words of freedom directly to us and any demons causing harm. But we do have one another, and Jesus promises his followers that they can experience his power to liberate people from bondage. When we make the decision to partner with Jesus, we can become patient and understanding like he is. We can understand that what motivates people’s evil behavior is complex, and we may never be able to parse out how much is due to their own choices, the trauma they’ve experienced, or dark forces of evil from the spiritual realm. When we recognize this, we can become healers who know that the power to truly transform and restore is God’s alone. And this power works through us as we choose to abide in Christ.

Popular culture often portrays casting out evil as something that requires detailed exorcism rituals and religious authorities. But Jesus’ story invites us to recognize the real power of love we have through him. Like Jesus, we can fight evil not with rituals or incantations but with the simple power of God’s word and unbreakable love. May we become like Jesus, fearing no evil because we know God frees us from internal chaos and darkness and allows us to rest and lie down near still waters.

And that’s the memo.

By The Chosen & The Bible Project on the YouVersion App

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“A mighty fortress is our God, a bulwark never failing. Our helper He, amid the flood of mortal ills prevailing” – Martin Luther, ca. 1527