“Just then there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit, and he cried out, ‘What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God.’” (Mark 1:23-24)
Don’t you just hate it when this kind of thing happens?
You go to your house of worship for a nice Sabbath observance, you’re listening to the rabbi give a really unique and interesting talk, and then the whole thing gets disrupted by some guy with an unclean spirit. Man! That sucks. Why can’t people with unclean spirits just stay home?
First, the slimy spirit knows who Jesus is. At some level, sin always knows it’s sin and always fears the judgment of Christ’s righteousness. Folks say to me, “Pastor, I know I shouldn’t say this but...” and then they go on to say something rather uncharitable. I want to tell them, “If you know you shouldn’t say it, don’t say it!” At some level, I think we always recognize our dirty spirits and we always try to justify them. We don’t really want Jesus to destroy them because we’ve gotten so comfortable with our resentments or prejudices, or some other selfish desire.