A while back, I had the opportunity to lead a group of five hundred people to Israel. One morning we had a Bible study on the southern steps of the Temple Mount. This precious ascent remains much the way it was two thousand years ago when Jesus and his disciples gathered there.
Our group sat with the eastern sun on their left shoulders and the temple wall to their backs. Behind them was the Dome of the Rock, the third-holiest site in the Muslim faith.
For my lesson I chose a phrase out of John 3:16 (NIV)—“one and only.” Since we were sitting where Jesus stood, it seemed only right to consider Jesus’ claim that he was God’s one and only Son. The fact that we sat in the shadow of a mosque dedicated to Muhammad only elevated the contrast.
A few minutes into the message a mysterious voice began to mock my words. It was high pitched and eerie. Each time I said “one and only,” it mimicked “one and only.” When I said the name “Jesus,” the voice, heavy with an accent, scoffed, “Jesus.” The interruptions had all the earmarks of a spiritual conflict. Christ being proclaimed. Christ being mocked. Jesus’ authority declared. Jesus’ authority belittled.
I could tell that the voice came from behind the people. I searched the walls but saw nothing. The people began to turn and look for the origin of the voice, as did the guides and guards. No one could isolate it.
The more I preached, the louder the voice parroted. For fear of conceding defeat to this odd force, I didn’t stop. The second point in my message was “Christ, the one and only ruler.” I seized the opportunity. Rather than teach the point, I prayed and proclaimed it: “Jesus is the supreme authority of this place, any place, and every place, which, by the way, includes any demons, servants of hell, and Satan himself. You are not welcome in this gathering!” I repeated this declaration several times until the crowd began to applaud and shout “Amen!”
The dissenting voice was suddenly silent. As if a switch had been flipped, it stopped. We completed the Bible lesson in peace. I later asked a tour guide if the culprit had been found. “We tried,” he told me, “but we could not find him.” The guide had no explanation.
A person might chalk up the silence of the scoffer to coincidence. I don’t. I see it as Providence. When the authority of Christ is proclaimed, the work of Satan must stop. Any demonic tongue must mute itself at the presence of truth.
That includes any force that is seeking to drive you out of the Promised Land.
Call on God. Declare the name of Jesus.
“Ask and it will be given to you” (Matt. 7:7 NIV).
“If you believe, you will get anything you ask for in prayer” (Matt.21:22 NCV).
Yes, it is a battle, but you do not fight in vain.
Taken from Glory Days by Max Lucado Copyright © 2015 by Max Lucado. Used by permission of Thomas Nelson. www.thomasnelson.com.