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This may sound strange, but Mark here records one of my "favorite" texts of the entire New Testament!

It is the account of one of Jesus' mighty miracles!

--- Dr. Mike Bagwell


 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
II Timothy 2





Here's the complete paragraph of Scripture:

"And they went into Capernaum; and straightway on the sabbath day he entered into the synagogue, and taught. And they were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one that had authority, and not as the scribes.  And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out,  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.  And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him.  And when the unclean spirit had torn him, and cried with a loud voice, he came out of him.  And they were all amazed, insomuch that they questioned among themselves, saying, What thing is this? what new doctrine is this? for with authority commandeth he even the unclean spirits, and they do obey him."    (Mark 1:21-27)






Jesus attended Church!

Really it was a "synagogue," a little word that means a meeting place.   ("Syn" means "together!  "Ago" means "to lead!" A place where God fearing people come together to learn more of Him!)

The New Testament word for "church" is derived from a parallel background!  "Ecclesia" is built from "Ec" (meaning "out of") and "Kaleo" (meaning "to call)!  A "church" is a called out (from the world) assembly of Believers meeting to worship the Lord!

In Luke 4:16 we are told of Jesus:  "And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day."  The words "as his custom was" translate "etho," which becomes our word "ethics!"

Here's another example.  In Mark 1:21 we read:  "And they went into Capernaum; and straightway on the sabbath day he entered into the synagogue, and taught."  Jesus and some of his (later to be known as) Disciples attended the service that Sabbath!  In the previous 4 or 5 verses Jesus has just called Simon Peter and Andrew then subsequently James and John.

Now when Jesus goes to church ... you can expect a miracle too!  (Either of word or deed!) 

In Mark's account ... it is both!

Jesus preached and cast a demon out of a man!

Where did Jesus perform the Markan (described in Mark) miracle?

In Capernaum.

The name means "village of comfort!"  Capernaum was "a flourishing city of Galilee situated on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee or Lake of Gennesaret, near the place where the Jordan flows into the lake."  (Some also say that Capernaum means the "City of Nahum!")

Jesus went to the place of "comfort," the city that bore that very name, to preach God's Word and heal this poor man!

The Old Testament Prophet "Nahum" has the name for "comfort" too!  A "comforting prophet" almost sounds like an oxymoron ... but that's not so!  An "oxymoron" is ... "something (like a concept) that is made up of contradictory or incongruous elements."

Jesus was (and still is) "skilled" at comfort!

His Father had taught Him to uplift those who were weary!  Listen again to Jesus in Isaiah:  "The Lord GOD hath given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary: he wakeneth morning by morning, he wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned."  I have highlighted the words to be emphasized.

If you are weary or discouraged today ... take heart!

Jesus still passes by those who are downcast and dejected!

The synagogue in Capernaum has been found by archaeologists!  It was a large building built of white limestone.  It is now known that all the streets in Capernaum radiated out from this building.  It was the very center of town and the very center of life for these people.  Over the entrance to most synagogues was carved a 7 branched candlestick.  However, this one had an engraved pot of manna and encircled with a vine and some grapes!

I have also learned that these Jewish houses of worship were always turned toward the west ... with the people having their backs toward the east!  Based on Ezekiel 8:16 (and other such passages) they figured that facing the east could easily lead to sun worship and other forms of idolatry!  Also they knew that the Lord "cometh" from the east ... so they looked toward the west ... as an emblem of the end of the Gospel, the goal of the Message!  Westward to them was a missionary view!

Synagogue buildings were used for 3 purposes.  In addition to Sabbath instruction and worship, they served as schools during the week and as courtrooms for minor cases occasionally.  See both Mark 13:9 and Luke 12:11 for the "courtroom" proof.

"Straightway" is one of Mark's favorite words!  And "straitway" Jesus went to church!  In my Bible I just counted this little word 19 times in Mark's short Gospel! But it occurs 40 times in the Greek text (the Textus Receptus, from which the King James translators worked)!  It means immediately or forthwith.  In Mark Jesus never stops!  He is the busy and obedient Servant of God!  (The Profitable Servant!) For example see Mark 6:31 --- "And He (Jesus) said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat."  No time to eat!  (This is the fourth time Mark uses that little word "straitway!"  Our King James New Testaments translate it as:  straightway, immediately or forthwith.)

What an example of diligent service our Lord leaves us!

No wonder Paul teaches us to be "not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord."  Romans 12:11  Or ... "Whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men."  Colossians 3:23  Even Solomon sensed this spirit of diligence: "Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest."  Ecclesiastes 9:10

Jesus went to "church" on the Sabbath Day.  That's the "seventh" day of the week. That's on Saturday!  (In obedience to the Law God gave through Moses!)  This was of course before His Death, Burial and Resurrection.  (Now we worship on Sunday, the first day of the week, the day Christ Jesus came forth from the grave!  Every Sunday is in a real way a resurrection celebration!)

If Jesus went to the Lord's House regularly ... surely we must do so as well!

There, in that "synagogue" service, Jesus was asked to "teach."  And He did!  The verb "teach" translates "didasko," from a root verb "dao" which means "to learn" or "to teach."  Our "teaching" word here is in the "perfect" tense in Greek.   Jesus did teach that day ... and when He was finished He went on to other places.  BUT while His teaching had ended ... the effects, the influence, the impact of that teaching went onward in the lives of the people!  (Truly it is still going onward yet today!  We are studying this event 2,000 years later!)

One did not have to be an official Priest to teach in the synagogue.  Any qualified male who well knew the Scriptures could be asked by "ruler" to speak.  The synagogues had a "democratic" character about them. 

Don't you wish you could have heard His sermon?

(In a way ... we can!  Read the Gospels!)

What was his teaching "manner?"

What happened during that unique service?

Where did Jesus go after the meeting that day?

All these questions of course are carefully answered in the "context" (the accompanying verses) that are affixed to our passage today!

Keep you Bible open!

And read a little further ....

                                                                              --- Dr. Mike Bagwell




I love that verse in Mark's Gospel that just says "Jesus ... came preaching!"

He was a Preacher!

In fact, He is the Preacher!

Mark 1:14 --- "Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God."

I would have been thrilled to hear Him!

(I shall some day!)

But HOW did people respond to His preaching?

Of course there are various answers to that question, but ALL those who heard Him at least had one reaction.

We read of it in Mark again. 

Mark 1:22 tells us --- "And they were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one that had authority, and not as the scribes."

They were astonished!

The verb "astonished" is "ekplesso" in Greek and means "to strike ("plesso") one out of ("ek") his senses!  To strike with amazement!

In English "astonished" means "thunder struck!"  (From a Latin term "tonare" ... to thunder!)

The verb, being an "imperfect" in its sense of timing, tells us that once they heard Jesus, they never got over it!

The verb is used 13 times in the New Testament ... all in reference to the Word of God or the power of God!  (Matthew 22:29 says: "Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God."  Or again in Luke 4:32 we are told: "And they were astonished at his doctrine: for his word was with power.")

I fear that today many have lost their wonder, their thrill, their astonishment at Jesus!

We too should never "get over" Him!

And while I do not want to "upset" anyone, notice that the astonishment was at Jesus' TEACHING as well as His preaching!

He "taught" them (in Greek = "didasko") is a verb in the "present" tense, suggesting that Jesus taught habitually, not occasionally.  He was a Preacher/Teacher!  (As are all true Pastors!)

And the noun "authority" translates "exousia" which means power in the sense of jurisdiction or right or capability!  (A big muscular wrestler has strength and physical power!  A ninety five pound police lady wearing her badge has ... maybe not strength and physical power ... but authority!)

All Heaven was behind our Lord!  Matthew 28:18 declares: "And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power ("exousia") is given unto me in heaven and in earth."

The "scribes" (in Greek = "grammateus") were a professional class of men who knew the Law and served a copyists and lawyers in that regard.

I have read that about the only way they taught was dryly citing and quoting other "authorities" and majoring on "minor" issues and technicalities of legal jurisprudence (much of it man-made).  Like this:  If a chicken lays an egg on the Sabbath ... it would be a sin to eat it ... because the chicken worked on the holy day to produce said egg!)

I'll take Jesus' beautiful preaching and teaching any day!

If your Pastor is "gifted" of God in the preaching of the Word ... sit Sunday and be amazed as Bible Truth flows from his mouth!

If He is Spirit filled and has God's anointing upon his pulpit ministry ... realize what a blessing you enjoy ... just hearing him week after week!

Remember what Proverbs 10:11 tells us:  "The mouth of a righteous man is a well of life."  Or Proverbs 10:13 --- "In the lips of him that hath understanding wisdom is found."  Or again Proverbs 10:21 --- "The lips of the righteous feed many: but fools die for want of wisdom." 

Go to Church Sunday ... and leave amazed!

And ... if you're in a church where you do NOT hear the Word of God ... you don't even have to pray about what to do.  The Bible is so clear on that matter.  GET OUT! Go where you do hear the Bible preached with power!

A precious old song that used to be sung goes something like this:

I stand amazed in the presence
Of Jesus the Nazarene,
And wonder how He could love me,
A sinner, condemned, unclean.

For me it was in the garden
He prayed: “Not My will, but Thine.”
He had no tears for His own griefs,
But sweat drops of blood for mine.

In pity angels beheld Him,
And came from the world of light
To comfort Him in the sorrows
He bore for my soul that night.

He took my sins and my sorrows,
He made them His very own;
He bore the burden to Calvary,
And suffered and died alone.

When with the ransomed in glory
His face I at last shall see,
’Twill be my joy through the ages
To sing of His love for me.

O how marvelous! O how wonderful!
And my song shall ever be:
O how marvelous! O how wonderful!
Is my Savior’s love for me!


                                                                                    --- Dr. Mike Bagwell



"And they were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one that had authority, and not as the scribes."

Here's an example of Jesus' authority.   When He taught He did not say "Moses has said!"  Nor did He say "Thus says the Lord!"  Rather He powerfully (being very God Himself) says "Verily, verily I say unto you ...."

He not only spoke the Truth!  He IS The Truth!

He drew no lessons from broken cisterns of foul water.  He IS the Living Water and He simply drew from His Own Being what His students needed for the hour at hand!

Jesus had authority that astounded people for over 33 years!  But when He died on the Cross He willingly became powerless and the victim of the wages of sin ... that sinners like us might be saved!

The scribes appealed to the authority of Moses or some other doctor of the law. Jesus simply assumed His authority!  The Saviour's life was that godly and pure!

Listen to G. Campbell Morgan as he preaches about Jesus' authority here.  "Wherein lay His authority?  In the thing He said, as He said it, for He carried to the souls of men conviction that it was true.  Stripped of all the things that hid, and all exposition that destroyed, the truth gripped men.  It was not the authority of the law.  It was not the authority of a manner.  It was the authority of naked and eternal truth, uttered through an absolutely perfect Man!  That is the authority of Jesus until this very hour.  And nothing is more marked than the continuity of that authority!  His authority is authority to the end of time.  The authority of Christ is not the authority of what we think of Christ, for tomorrow we may think differently of Him.  It is always the authority of the actual words so marvelously preserved for us; and never wholly apart from them is Christ authoritative today!"

Even Jesus' enemies had to admit in John 7:46 --- "The officers answered, Never man spake like this man."

And in 3 Gospel texts (Matthew 21:27 and Mark 11:33 and Luke 20:8) we read words like these:  "And Jesus said unto them, Neither tell I you by what authority I do these things."  He would not reveal the secrets of His authority to the wicked swine of this world!  But He does reveal it to His Own!

Just think of the authority a 100% clean and clear  conscience (having NEVER been soiled) would present to a man of God (not to mention the God-Man)!  A sinless life emboldens one in His preaching I'm quite sure!

One old study source I reviewed told of a young man (one named Francis Junius) who was lost and rebellious against our Lord.  One day he began reading the Scriptures his Dad loved so much!  Happening (he thought) upon John chapter 1, he was "struck" (note that word) with the authority and power of the words!  Through their message, he eventually was saved by God's Grace.  His manner of living changed drastically too! He became a life-long student of the Word!

This is an authority Satan recognized and obeyed!  So did the world of nature itself! And the angels agree as well!  It's very little wonder that "men" picked up on it too!

I just read these words about Jesus.  " ... the 'moral aroma' of His character ...!"  Wow!  He is a sweet-smelling Savor to His Heavenly Father!

                                                                              --- Dr. Mike Bagwell




Look who came to church!

On the day Jesus preached!

Mark 1:23 --- "And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out ...."

By an "unclean spirit" I believe the Bible means a demon.

That term (in the singular) is used 10 times in the New Testament.  And in the plural it is found 10 more times.

The adjective "unclean" each time is "akathartos" which means not cleansed or dirty or even filthy!  The word was first used of soiled houses or clothes ... then came to mean those unfit for worship (unqualified for the offering of sacrifice at the tabernacle, due to some sin).  Next it picked up the taint of moral impurity also!

These unclean spirits are vile sensual devils (demons) who had inhabited certain men or women in Jesus' day!  (They are still active today too!)

It has become popular in liberal circles to deny the reality of demons ... and to suggest that these people of 1st century Rome and Greece were just very superstitious and scary.  One teacher says that Jesus knew better than to believe in these little devils, but He "played along" with the poor folks to satisfy their needs!

That so-called teacher is wrong!

Satan is real.

Devils or demons are too.

The spirit world exists.

That's according to the whole scope of the Word of God too.

The verb "cried out" is in Greek "anakrazo" and means to scream from the depths of one's throat!  To shriek loudly! 

Here's something interesting too.   The preposition "with" here in our text is the Greek word "en."  That's unusual.  "En" means literally inside something! 

The man was IN the unclean spirit.  Or wouldn't you rather say the unclean spirit was IN the man?  Either way there in an indwelling possession going on in this text.

Little wonder the Word of God so clearly emphasizes the fact that when we get saved we are IN Christ Jesus!  (2 Corinthians 5:17)

In Mark's Gospel Jesus' first "miracle" is this commanding the devil to leave this man's body.  Which command the unclean spirit instantly obeys!

And Mark might be painting a contrast with this miracle too.

Jesus is filled with the Holy Spirit a dozen verses earlier in this first chapter.  Now He deals with an unholy spirit.

Jesus is under the influence and control of the Spirit of God.  This poor man was under the influence and control of the devil.

As far as this man being there on this particular day ... the Bible scholars are divided in their comments.  Some see the wording here ("their synagogue") as suggesting that this man was not a usual attendee at the Sabbath services in Capernaum.  (If so ... I'm sure he blessed the day He went, the very day Jesus preached!  Talk about timing and a "divine appointment!")

Others teach that this man went here weekly (the verb = "was" as an indicative imperfect active) and therefore was well known to the others present.  If so, he has listened quietly through many a sermon!  In other words, many preachers didn't have enough of the power of God about them to sir up the demon dwelling within the possessed congregant!  BUT when Jesus came ... the old devil couldn't stand it! He had to speak!  Wow!

Thank God Jesus had absolute authority over all these wicked spirits!

In fact, He has absolute authority over everything!

Praise His Name!

Tomorrow, Lord willing, we shall see the actual confrontation.

Join us then ... with a Bible in your hand!

                                                                      --- Dr. Mike Bagwell



LESSON 4 ... MARK 1:24 (TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2004):

Today's verse is nearly self explanatory!

The "unclean spirit" cried out to Jesus!

"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."  Mark 1:24

Notice first of all that the "unclean spirit" is in truth a plurality of unclean spirits! (Is this a case of "many" acting as "one?"  Is this the devil trying to copy the unity of the Triune Godhead?)

It's a Bible fact that more than one demon can inhabit and harass a body. (Remember "legion" in Mark 5:9and 16 also in Luke 8:30?)

Also realize that these devils had some proper theology ... at least in a couple of points! They knew that Jesus had the power to destroy them!  (And that He would do so some day!)

Some liberal preachers don't even know that any more!

And they also knew that Jesus was the very Son of God, the absolutely Holy One of Heaven!

They also knew where Jesus lived!  (In Nazareth!)

And they tried to communicate with Him!

But ... as we shall see tomorrow, Lord willing, Jesus wanted no part of their conversation!

In fact that's the "heart" of today's lesson:  DO NOT LISTEN TO THE DEVIL ... NO MATTER WHAT HE IS SAYING!

Jesus didn't!

Neither should we!

All we need to know about the devil is to STAY AWAY from him!

Short lesson today!

Short in words ... but long in meaning!

James didn't tell us to "dialog" with the devil!

He said "RESIST the devil!"

James 4:7 --- "Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you."

That verb "resist" is in Greek spelled "anthistemi."  It's their word for "stand" ("histemi") and their preposition "anti" meaning "against!" 

James is saying STAND AGAINST the devil ... on the Authority of God's Word and through the Power of God's Holy Spirit!

                                                                       --- Dr. Mike Bagwell



LESSON 5 ... VERSE 25:

Watch Jesus confront this devil.  He has been preaching in the synagogue at Capernaum.  The man with an "unclean spirit," who was in attendance that Sabbath day, began to cry out loudly!  Really it appears to me that the demons inside him were talking!

Jesus, who needs no "testimony" from the devils, is about to act!

"And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him."  Mark 1:25

The verb "rebuked" is interesting!

It translates a Greek word "epitimao" which combines the preposition "epi" and the basic root verb "timao."  In the language of Jesus' day "timao" meant to evaluate something! To size it up, to prize it if precious or to debunk it if vile!  To give to something what it merits!  And the prefix "epi" means "upon" primarily ... but here it just intensifies the main verb.  The verb is set in the "aorist" tense ... showing us that Jesus had to only speak once ... and it was done!

"Saying," a present participle, describes Jesus' short speech here.  It's "lego" in Greek and basically means "to pick, to choose, to lay forth" (here) words in their proper order!  Jesus systematically verbalizes this next command!  It is not a haphazard order!  (Everything Jesus says is critically important and comprises a portion of the eternal Word of God!)  This word being a present participle shows that Mark is making us an "eye-witness" to the happenings!

"Hold thy peace!"

That's all one word in Greek.  "Phimoo" means (literally) "to muzzle" an animal! Here it is framed as imperative aorist passive 2nd person singular action word!  Jesus says:  "Demon, be muzzled ... right now!"  See 1 Corinthians 9:9 and 1 Timothy 5:18 for the word being used with "oxen!"  History records the verb "muzzle" since the mid-1400s.  To muzzle means: "to put a device over an animal's mouth to stop it from biting, eating, or rooting."  Jesus treats this unclean spirit like a beast!

Next Jesus commands "Come out of him!" 

This is another imperative!

Jesus demands it!

It translates "exerchomai" and means "to get away, to go out, to come out, to be gone, to disappear or to exit!"

Jesus said, "Devil, out of here!"

It is relatively close to what He said to the devil at the end of His temptation experience in the wilderness:  "Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written ...."  Matthew 4:10  ("Get thee" ... the verb ... translates "hupago" = to lead under!  Satan, a defeated foe, is now UNDER Jesus' great authority!)

Jesus has power OVER the devil!

(And if He has power over the devil ... the demons, who are "under" satan ... absolutely MUST obey the dear Lord too!)

And ... as you well know ... the devil (the "unclean spirit") had to do just what he was told!

Lord willing, the next verse tomorrow.

Victory is coming!

                                                                                 --- Dr. Mike Bagwell



LESSON 6 ... VERSE 26:

Even the devils obeyed Jesus!

In Mark 1 He commanded ... at the synagogue ... an old demon to leave a man who had come to worship.

"Come out of him!"  Jesus had clearly said these words.

Then we are told:  "And when the unclean spirit had torn him, and cried with a loud voice, he came out of him."  Mark 1:26

Notice that even when this devil knew he had lost the battle for the man's body ... he did all the destructive work he could on the way out! 

That's the devil for you.

In our day satan well knows that he lost the Battle at Calvary!

He's a defeated enemy!

Yet he seeks to do all the damage he can to the work of God!

He "tore" the man!  The verb here is "sparasso" and means firstly "to grasp" then comes to mean "to rend" or "to tear."  Get this:  the "root" verb, "spao," means "to draw!" Another dictionary says the word means "to mangle" or to cause "convulsions!"

Another conquered demon does this in Mark 9:26!  There it's translated "rent him."

In fact, this verb is ONLY used in the Bible of the destruction of departing demons!

The devil is a destroyer.

And this unclean spirit had a loud voice too!  The Greek expression is "mega phone." The adjective "mega" means big and "phone" means sound ... as well as voice.

The spirit "cried!"  This verb is "krazo" and means "to cry eerily" (like a raven), or even "to croak!"

Both verbs so far are "aorist" in their sense of timing.  These are "once for all time" actions.  This devil never re-inhabited the man at hand!  Jesus healed him permanently.

(Sounds just like the Lord!)

Lastly see that the devil ... after doing all the hurt he could ... "came out" of the man.

The word construction here is great.

Came out (the verb) is "exerchomai" in Greek.  It literally means "to come or go" and with the prefix ("ek") ... "out!"  To depart.  To come out!  To get out! 

BUT in addition to the "come out" of our main verb ... the Holy Spirit adds an independent preposition too!  "Came out" is followed by the little word "ek" again!

It literally and grammatically says he (the unclean spirit) had to come out OUT of the man!  (Twice! The modifier OUT is used two times, once built into the verb and once standing alone!) 

Devil, get out OUT!

Jesus does all thing well WELL!

This is what many said of Him in Mark 7:37.  "And were beyond measure astonished, saying, He hath done all things well: he maketh both the deaf to hear, and the dumb to speak."

Glory to God!

Christ is Victor!

"For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil."  1 John 3:8

                                                                                    --- Dr. Mike Bagwell



LESSON 7 ... VERSE 27 ... FRIDAY, DECEMBER 3, 2004:

After Jesus worked this great miracle Mark 1:27 tells us: "And they were all amazed, insomuch that they questioned among themselves, saying, What thing is this? what new doctrine is this? for with authority commandeth he even the unclean spirits, and they do obey him."

The verb "amazed" is the key to this whole sentence!

It translates a Greek verb, "thambeo," which means to be astonished or to be frightened!  (It is derived from a "root" verb that means to stupefy or to dumbfound! That verb is "tapho.")

This word is only used 4 times in all the New Testament.  In each of those occurrences, it expresses the effect Jesus had on someone!  He shocked them out of their (natural) senses!  In a sense that HAS to happen prior to salvation!  Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 2:14 --- "But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned."  Wow!

They all decided that what Jesus was doing was a NEW thing!  He was teaching a NEW doctrine!

Now, I have investigated that word "new" carefully.

It, according to the concordances and lexicons, does NOT mean new in reference to time!  Jesus is simply revealing truth that had existed for eternity! 

It rather means "new according to freshness!" 

Jesus was telling the same old story! The one about a Holy God who compels sinful man to repent and be saved!  (The same story told by Abraham as he prepared to sacrifice Isaac!  The same story told by Moses with the brazen serpent!  The same story told by God in the Garden of Eden as He clothed sinful and naked Adam and Eve in the coats of animals' skins ... requiring bloodshed!  The same story told by David in Psalm 22 and by Isaiah in chapter 53 of his prophecy too!)

BUT when Jesus told it ... it was "fresh!"

It had power ("authority = "exousia") behind it!

What made Jesus' Words and Preaching so "fresh?"

I think this is the answer.  I discovered it by comparing Scripture with Scripture. The Psalmist first says it in Psalm 92:10.   "But my horn shalt thou exalt like the horn of an unicorn: I shall be anointed with fresh oil.See that?  FRESH OIL is a picture of the Holy Spirit!  That Hebrew word "fresh" is "raanan" and is translated in the King James Bible as "green" (!!!) 18 times and as "fresh" 1 time and as "flourishing" 1 time!  (Only found 20 times in whole Bible!)

And do remember this ... green is the Bible color that represents LIFE!  Jesus' Words were "fresh" ... LIFE GIVING words!

Jesus had a new (again, "fresh") Spirit-filled Word to proclaim!


That's what I am this Friday!


Jesus is still doing that to folks, isn't He?

                                                                             --- Dr. Mike Bagwell



LESSON 8 ... VERSE 28:

Aren't you GLAD for the day you first HEARD about Jesus?

Many were so young when they first "heard" that they can't even remember the exact moment!

Others know precisely when such wonderful knowledge was encountered!

After Jesus had preached in the synagogue in Capernaum (Mark 1:21-28), we are told:  "And immediately his fame spread abroad throughout all the region round about Galilee."  Mark 1:28

Of course Jesus also had cast an evil spirit out of a man during that service too! (Services where the devil is whipped badly do get attention!)

"Spread abroad" is a verb that means "to go out!"  The good news traveled in a hurry (straitway or immediately)!

"Region" is a little Greek term that means the "room round about" an area. Galilee encompassed a pretty big plot of real estate too!  The noun itself means "a circuit."  The report of Jesus' ministry and power disseminated all around the Lake and beyond!

But today's "key" word has to be "FAME!"  It translates a little noun "akoe" that means the HEARING of Him went everywhere!

These folks, by the thousands, HEARD about Jesus!

Let me again ask you my initial question ... Aren't you GLAD for the day you first HEARD about Jesus?

Why, preacher?

Because ... "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." Romans 10:17

Because Jesus said ... "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that HEARETH my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life."  John 5:24

Because Paul taught us ... "How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?"  Romans 10:14

And because of of our Lord's most often repeated clauses (and commands) is ... "He that hath an ear, let him hear!"  (7 times in Revelation)

Hearing comes first ... then via Holy Spirit conviction ... comes the believing!

Thank God ... we heard!

                                                                                 --- Dr. Mike Bagwell




This paragraph constitutes the first miracle in Mark's Gospel!

It is sort of a "prototype" of all the others as well!

In it the devil is met head-on and defeated dramatically!

That's a paradigm of Jesus' whole Ministry!

Notice that here in Mark Jesus' words (His sermon) are not given ... just His deed (miracle) is emphasized.  This is typical of the second Gospel.  Here what our Lord DOES is more in focus than what He SAYS!

Jesus put a "gag order" on the departing demon!  "Hold thy peace!" He said.  It was an "enforced silence!"

This is one of Jesus' Sabbath Day Ministries during His short three year public work!  (I recently read a book in which the preacher brought a message on each of Jesus' Sabbath Day experiences!  It was good!)  Perhaps Mark is describing the first Sabbath Day after the baptism and temptation.

That old unclean spirit actually got a "double command" from our Lord.  "Hold thy peace!"  Then ... "come out of him!"  He, of course, did both!

Devils are found in strange places!  Here one is at church!  In Job 1 the devil is seen in the very presence of God!  (Yet I still believe the old accuser can only be at one place at one time!  He is NOT omni-present ... as is our mighty God!)

Jesus has come to Capernaum to set up His "headquarters."  It became His base of operations.  Thus this miracle is all the more significant.  There will be no unclean spirits in the synagogue where Jesus worships!

The demon was more orthodox (straight) than many so-called preachers today! Listen to this unclean spirit talk to Jesus:  "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."

Now pay attention to James 2:19 --- "Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble."  Of course the faith of those devils is a dead faith! (Be sure yours is real!)

Like a renter who is angry at his eviction notice, the devil decides to "tear up" some things as he leaves!   "And when the unclean spirit had torn him, and cried with a loud voice, he came out of him." (Mark 1:26)  I am glad God can "fix" what the devil breaks! 

Maybe this miracle is a commentary on the truth of 1 John 3:8 --- "For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil."  The verb "destroy" (in Greek = "luo") means "to loose!" (To untie, to break free!)

I'm so glad Mark recorded this event in such detail!

What a Saviour we have!

There IS Victory in Jesus!

1 Corinthians 15:57 --- "But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."

                                                                                --- Dr. Mike Bagwell




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