Sunday Messages

Luke 8:21-39 by Pastor Dan Walker
Each person lives in two world, the seen and the unseen. Within the unseen world there is a cosmic battle between the kingdom of God and Satan's domain of darkness that affects everyone. In this message, you will learn how Jesus defeated the enemy. By following His example, you also can gain the victory over the enemy in your life.
Duration:31 mins 18 secs

Today we’re going to be talking about “Defeating the Enemy.” To learn how to defeat the enemy, we need to understand that there are two world that we live in. The two worlds are the seen and the unseen. The seen world is the physical world, that which we can see, hear, touch, taste and smell.

For most people, the seen world is all that they perceive. Yet there is another world the unseen world. The unseen world is the spiritual world. A world in which there is a cosmic battle raging. A battle between the kingdom of God and Satan’s domain of darkness.

2 Corinthians 4:18 (ESV) as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

As believers, we are not to focus on the seen world, rather the unseen world. The seen world seems so real and so permanent, yet it is transient, it will eventually be destroyed. The unseen world is eternal, it is going to last forever.

John 3:3 (ESV) Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

Unless a person is a believer and born again, they cannot see the unseen realm of the kingdom of God. Yet, too often, even as believers, we simply tend to live in the physical world alone. Leaving the spiritual world for eternity. However, we must get our priorities straight and look first and foremost at the unseen world and God’s kingdom.

Ephesians 6:12 (ESV) For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.

Too often, we see other people as our enemies, the ones that we can see with our eyes. But our real enemies are the unseen spiritual forces of evil and darkness. They are the ones that God calls us to defeat. God desires for you to advance His kingdom by defeating the enemy in the spiritual dimension.

Today, we’re going to learn how Jesus defeated the enemy. He provides us with an example to follow so that we can do the same.

Believe in God’s power over circumstances

Luke 8:22 (ESV) One day he got into a boat with his disciples, and he said to them, “Let us go across to the other side of the lake.” So they set out,

As we study stories about Jesus, it’s always important to pay attention to what Jesus says. On this boat trip across the sea of Galilee, Jesus says “Let us go across to the other side of the lake.” When Jesus says that he and His disciples were going to the other side, what does that mean? It means just what Jesus said, they’re going to the other side.

Luke 8:23-24a (ESV) and as they sailed he fell asleep. And a windstorm came down on the lake, and they were filling with water and were in danger. And they went and woke him, saying, “Master, Master, we are perishing!”

On the boat trip across the lake, Jesus falls asleep. Suddenly a violent windstorm arose and the waves were filling the boat with water. The disciples frantically woke Jesus and announced to him that they were soon to drown. It seems in the midst of the circumstances, the disciples had forgotten that they were going to the other side of the lake. Rather they had concluded that they were going not to the other side but to the bottom of the lake. Jesus’ response to the disciples taught them and will teach us an important lesson.

Luke 8:24b-25 (ESV) And he awoke and rebuked the wind and the raging waves, and they ceased, and there was a calm. He said to them, “Where is your faith?” And they were afraid, and they marveled, saying to one another, “Who then is this, that he commands even winds and water, and they obey him?”

It’s noteworthy that Jesus rebuked the storm. The word rebuke is the same word Jesus often used in casting out demons. Could it be that Satan and his demons were seeking to stop Jesus from reaching the other side of the lake? More on that in a few minutes.

Jesus then turned to His disciples and asked them a simple question “Where is your faith?” Jesus was pointing out the lack of faith demonstrated by the disciples. First of all, they had not believed Jesus when He said they were going to the other side. They believed in what they could see with their eyes. A storm that they believed would drown them all.

Where else was their faith lacking? Their faith was lacking in that Jesus was training His disciples to do the same things He was doing. Through faith, they also could have trusted God to still the storm, rather than give in to fear. The lesson for us is that we also must believe in God’s power over circumstances.

The circumstances that we’re talking about here are things that we would consider negative circumstances. Like being in a violent storm and a lake in which we could be drowned. Circumstances are the visible things that we see in life that cause us to fear, worry and panic.

Jesus says to each one of us this morning if we’re thinking like those disciples, where is your faith? Our faith must look into the unseen world and believe that God has power over any circumstance. Faith brings God’s power from the unseen world and brings changes to the seen world. Negative circumstances are often caused by Satan. God allows them to teach us to trust Him and unleash His power over those circumstances. Whether the storm in your life has to do with health, relationships, finances, emotions or something else, faith brings a word that will calm the storm. Believe in God’s power over circumstances and …

Believe in God’s power over demons

Luke 8:27 (ESV) When Jesus had stepped out on land, there met him a man from the city who had demons. For a long time he had worn no clothes, and he had not lived in a house but among the tombs.

So, Jesus and His disciples make it to the other side of the lake, just as He said they would. Immediately when they land, they confront a naked, demon possessed man. He had been in this condition for a long time and lived a solitary life in the tombs. In Jesus’ day, tombs were often caves hollowed out in the hills, which would provide some shelter from the elements.

Luke 8:28-29a (ESV) When he saw Jesus, he cried out and fell down before him and said with a loud voice, “What have you to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, do not torment me.” For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man.

Approaching Jesus, the demons began to scream through the man’ voice. They were afraid of the power of the Spirit in Jesus. Jesus had been commanding the demons to come out of the man, but they had not yet obeyed. The demons knew who Jesus was and that He had come to destroy them.

Luke 8:30-31 (ESV) Jesus then asked him, “What is your name?” And he said, “Legion,” for many demons had entered him. And they begged him not to command them to depart into the abyss.

The name of the demons were Legion, which means that many demons had possessed the man. A legion of Roman soldiers consisted of 6000 men, so this man inhabited by many demons. Revelation tell us that ultimately Satan and his demons will end up in hell, the lake of fire, for eternity. These demons did not want to go there, to the abyss anytime soon.

Luke 8:32-33 (ESV) Now a large herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside, and they begged him to let them enter these. So he gave them permission. Then the demons came out of the man and entered the pigs, and the herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and drowned.

Jesus commanded the demons to come up and all of them came out of the man. They entered into a large herd of pigs and the pigs went berserk, plunging off a cliff into a lake and drowned. We must believe in God’s power over demons.

What are demons? Demons are evil or unclean spirits. They once were angels in heaven, but they rebelled and were cast to earth. These fallen angels or demons are spirit beings that serve Satan. The ministry of Jesus pulled back the veil on what is going on in the unseen spiritual world. Demons do not die and there are just as many demons today as there were in Jesus’ day.

Much of the violent, murderous, sinful behavior we read about today in the news is caused by people possessed by demons. Various sins and the use of drugs and alcohol open people up to demonic powers. As believers, we must ask God for discernment to see what is happening in the unseen world by demons. The good news, is the we, just as Jesus and His disciples, can cast demons out of people and set them free. Unfortunately today in America, very few people including many Christians, believe that demons are real. We must learn to discern demonic activity and set people free through the power of the Spirit. Next you need to learn to …

Tell others what God has done for you

Luke 8:35 (ESV) Then people went out to see what had happened, and they came to Jesus and found the man from whom the demons had gone, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind, and they were afraid.

The transformation seen in the demon possessed man was remarkable. From a naked person, living among the tombs, screaming and cutting himself with stones, this man was been set free. He was now clothed, in his right mind and learning from Jesus’ teaching. The change was so abrupt and striking that the people who knew the man were afraid of Jesus.

Luke 8:37 (ESV) Then all the people of the surrounding country of the Gerasenes asked him to depart from them, for they were seized with great fear. So he got into the boat and returned.

Rather than rejoice at what God had done for this man, they wanted Jesus to leave their Gentile country. Perhaps some were upset with the financial loss of a large herd of pigs. Their eyes were simply on the seen world, not the victory that had been accomplished in the unseen world. I believe that the man set free was saved and we’ll hear his story in heaven one day.

Luke 8:38-39 (ESV) The man from whom the demons had gone begged that he might be with him, but Jesus sent him away, saying, “Return to your home, and declare how much God has done for you.” And he went away, proclaiming throughout the whole city how much Jesus had done for him.

The man who had been set free wanted to follow Jesus in person, but God had other plans for him. Jesus told him to do two things. First of all he was to return to his home. His home was no longer the tombs, but to return to his family who had long ago lost all hope for him. Secondly, the man was to tell others the story of what God had done for him. And that’s exactly what the man did. He went throughout his city and told everyone how Jesus had set him free. So, let’s think about how Jesus’ instruction to the man speaks to us today.

Jesus’ instruction to this man is not just for people who have had demons cast out. Jesus’ instruction to tell others what God has done for you is for every believer. If you’re a believer in Jesus, then Jesus has done something wonderful for you. Whether you were saved as a child or out of a lifestyle of sin, you have a story of how God’s love changed your life.

We are to tell our story of what God has done for us to everyone around us for the rest of our lives. That’s what being a witness for Jesus means. Every believer is called, is commanded by Jesus to be His witness everywhere we go. Jesus has changed our eternal destiny. From spending eternity in the fires of hell to spending eternity with Jesus in heaven on earth. That is worth telling others, so that they can experience the same blessing.

 Today, we’ve learned how Jesus defeated the enemy, Satan, in two sets of circumstances. The first was in the face of a violent storm. He spoke to it commanded God’s power to bring peace. Whatever storm you may be going through today, God wants to bring peace.

Jesus also defeated Satan, who had complete control of the demonized man. No one knew how to set him free, until Jesus took authority over the demons. That same authority over demon powers has been given to every believer through the power of the Spirit. There are no hopeless cases for those who believe in God’s power.

Let’s grow in our faith to believe God for the impossible. To see the power of the unseen kingdom of God change the seen world around. And as God does that in and through us, let’s give Him thanks. And tell everyone around us what God has done in and through us.