Mark 1.21-27


Jesus Preaches in the Synagogue


  • North shore of Lake Galilee
  • Approx. 1500 people
  • Home of Peter, Andrew, James and John
  • Synagogue their home 'church'

Jesus' Authority

  • The crowd marvels at Christ's authority in teaching
  • His message was Mark 1.14-15, the Kingdom of God
  • 'Unclean spirit' = demon
  • May not have been immediately obvious the man had a demon
  • An aggressive man confronting Jesus
  • 'What do you have to do with us' a term of rejection
  • 'Come to destroy us' - the man saw Jesus as a threat
  • After the excorcism the crowd maybe a little afraid as well as amazed

Is Demonic Possession Real?

  • Often relegated to the past or ancient explanation of psychiatric illness
  • The Bible affirms the spiritual
  • The Bible distinguishes demon-possession from 'insanity' (Deut 28.34, Jer 51.7)
  • The Bible recounts things that can't be explained psychologically (Jesus casting demons into pigs!)
  • Many accounts of demonic activity still today
  • The Western scientific method can't include the supernatural so rejects it
  • [When exorcists need help, they call him](

Christians and the Demonic

  • Christians are filled with the Spirit and part of God's Kingdom, demons are excluded
  • Colossians 2.15 “He disarmed the rulers and authorities and disgraced them publicly; he triumphed over them in him.”
  • Demons can still attack and deceive
  • 1Tim. 4.1-2 “Now the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will depart from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and the teachings of demons, through the hypocrisy of liars whose consciences are seared.”
  • We put on  spiritual armour — truth, righteousness, the gospel of peace, faith, salvation, the Word of God, and prayer. (Eph 6.13-18)

The Authority of the Kingdom of God

  • The presence of God came to church and all hell broke loose!
  • Disciples would do what Jesus did and get similar reactions.
  • “All authority has been given to me in heaven and on earth. Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations… And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28.18–20)
  • Jesus has commissioned us with his authority and presence.
  • We should expect to provoke similar reactions.
  • Our manner should be humility and our motive love
  • To move in this authority we need to be committed to the Kingdom life.

Discussion Questions

  • How did you go with last week’s commitments?
  • Re-read the passage in a couple of different translations
  • Retell the passage in your own words
  • Do you have an experience of the demonic or supernatural you'd like to share?
  • (If this is not resolved, ask your group or the pastors to pray with you.)
  • What stops us living in the authority Christ has given us?
  • What does this tell us about God?
  • What does this tell us about people?
  • What is God saying to you?
  • What are you going to do as a result?
  • Who are you going to tell?