Summary: I would like to thank Pastor Jerry Shirley for sharing his series on Acts. It has been a blessing as well as a great help. I have used these for our church, as I spend my days caring for my dying father.
Does The Devil Know Your Name? Acts 19:11-16
In our Sunday night Bible study about dealing with doubt, called “WHY DOESN’T GOD ANSWER ME!?” we are going through the section titled “Through the Deep Waters.” We are looking at a man named Asaph and his time of doubt.
[Psa 77:13-20 NLT] “13 O God, your ways are holy. Is there any god as mighty as you? 14 You are the God of great wonders! You demonstrate your awesome power among the nations. 15 By your strong arm, you redeemed your people, the descendants of Jacob and Joseph. 16 When the Red Sea saw you, O God, its waters looked and trembled! The sea quaked to its very depths. 17 The clouds poured down rain; the thunder rumbled in the sky. Your arrows of lightning flashed.
18 Your thunder roared from the whirlwind; the lightning lit up the world! The earth trembled and shook. 19 Your road led through the sea, your pathway through the mighty waters--a pathway no one knew was there! 20 You led your people along that road like a flock of sheep, with Moses and Aaron as their shepherds.”
Asaph looked back and remembered the mighty things God had done, how he opened the Red Sea and made a path for the Israelites to walk across. We talked about how Christians, today, can look back to the mighty works of Jesus and we got into an awesome discussion on why we don’t see the Hand of God working today like we do in the Scriptures. I made a statement to the effect that maybe we’ve stopped believing… maybe we’ve stopped believing in the power that is in the Name of Jesus.
As we move deeper into the book of Acts I want to ask you something. Does the devil know your name? Should he know your name? Let’s find out.
Turn your Bible to Acts 19: 11-16. READ. According to our text we see the devil knew exactly who the true believers were that he had to watch out for and today he still knows who he needs to watch out for.
There are two qualities that will put you in the devil’s crosshairs. 1) You truly believe in the Name of Jesus. 2) You are living in the Name of Jesus.
Believing in Jesus is what happens on the inside when we understand the difference between head knowledge and heart knowledge.
Living in Jesus is revealed on the outside. Believing in Jesus, having a personal relationship with Jesus is what transforms the person into a public lifestyle or living in Jesus. We cannot live FOR Jesus until we truly believe IN Jesus...
Let me ask a question. Does the devil know your name? Most might say, “I sure hope not!” He Should know your name.
Let’s examine this a little deeper. The devil will know your name if. . .
1. You believe in the Name of Jesus. Verses 11-12
Paul was doing some extraordinary miracles. These miracles were not a result of any power that Paul had but by the power he found by truly believing in the Name of Jesus.
People with cancer were cured. Those suffering from mental disorders were restored. The blind were made to see, the crippled made new. The deaf were given new ears. The mute received a voice. The lame were made to walk.
Paul believed in Jesus but his belief was more than simple belief in facts about Jesus.
[Jas 2:19 NLT] “You say you have faith, for you believe that there is one God. Good for you! Even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror.”
Jesus’ name meant something to Paul because Paul had a life changing experience with Jesus Christ.
Sometimes people watch the pastor as he greets the congregation, after the service and they hear comments like; “That was an awesome message!” Or they listen to people talking about the Sunday school teacher and what amazing things they learn. Maybe they hear the praises the choir receives and they say, “I want some of that.” Some are not happy serving behind the scenes and just want to be in the lime-light, looking good for all to see.
The Seven Sons of Sceva were like this and even tried doing some of those extraordinary miracles by the power of Jesus Name. These seven brothers are a prime example of what not to do. IF God’s NOT IN IT, STAY OUT OF IT. If God didn’t call you, don’t you answer!
Notice what happened when they tried something they had no business dealing with. Look at verses 13-16. WHAT IN THE WORLD HAPPENED?
Here’s the problem with what they were doing. They did not say: "In the name of Jesus, whom WE preach, whom WE believe. . ." This Jesus whom Paul preaches… He’s not our Jesus but if it works for Paul we’ll give it a try.