Mt. 8:16 π Mt. 12:24-27 π Mk. 3:22 π Lk. 4:36 π Lk. 10:17-20 π Lk. 11:18-20
How striking to contrast all this with the calm authority of Christ, who needed no adjuration, or methods of exorcism, and no prolonged preparation of Himself ere dealing with a spirit-possessed man. "He cast out the spirits by a word" ( Mt. 8:16 ), "With authority and power He commandeth...and they obey Him," was the wondering testimony of the awe-struck people ( Lk. 4:36 ); and the testimony, too, of the seventy sent forth by Him to use the authority of His Name, as they found the spirits subject to them, even as they were to their Lord. ( Lk. 10:17-20; top )
"''They' obey Him," said the people. "They" - the evil spirits whom the people knew to be real identities governed by Beelzebub, their prince. ( Mt. 12:24-27 ) The complete mastery of the Lord over the demons, compelled the leaders to find some way of explaining His authority over them, and so by that subtle influence of Satan - with which all who have had insight into his devices are familiar - they suddenly charge the Lord with having Satanic power Himself, by saying "He casteth out demons through Beelzebub, the prince of the demons," ( Mk. 3:22; top ) suggesting that Christ's authority over evil spirits was derived from their chief and prince.
The reference to the kingdom of Satan, and his kingship was left uncontradicted by the Lord, who simply declared the truth in the face of Satan's lie, that He cast out demons "by the finger of God," and that Satan's kingdom would soon fall were he to act against himself, and dislodge his emissaries from their place of retreat in human bodies, where alone they can achieve their greatest power, and do the greatest harm among men. ( Lk. 11:18-20; top ) That Satan does apparently fight against himself is true, but when he does so, it is with the purpose of covering some scheme for greater advantage to his kingdom.
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