Summary: The problem with people asking for forgiveness and not inviting Jesus into their life.
Scripture: Matthew 12:43 – 45
Title: “The Lights Are On, But No One’s Home”
Introduction: Jesus was making reference to how Israel had been presented the opportunity to receive Jesus, but instead had rejected Him in favor of holding onto the O.T. Law.
As a result of depending on the Law instead of Christ Israel had allowed herself to become infested with demons. Israel had become controlled by religious bigotry, intolerance, prejudice and many other religious sins.
I was out the other evening and I passed a house where the lights were on, but I’m pretty sure there was no one home.
There are many homes where the automatic timer turns the lights on and off to give the appearance that there are people living there when in reality there’s no one home.
This is illustrated in the portion of Scripture, “When the unclean spirit” came back he found the house empty, swept, and garnished.
I. THE UNCLEAN SPIRIT.
a. What is an “Unclean spirit?”
b. An unclean spirit is nothing more than a “demon.” – (a “spirit-being”)
c. Demons are angels that were cast out of heaven when “Lucifer” led a rebellion against God in heaven.
d. Revelation 12:4 “And his tail (the dragon’s tail) drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth:” (“stars” having reference to angels)
e. Angels were created by God. – They were created “Holy.” – When they chose to “rebel” they lost their first state and became “unclean” in their nature.
f. Everything an “Unclean” spirit (demon) will suggest will be against God, therefore, unclean.
g. Demons have “limited” ability. – About all they can do is accuse, tempt, and generate fear.
h. The angels who followed Lucifer (Satan) lost their first estate and were cast down to earth as illegal aliens. (without a body) “And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation,” (Jude 6)
II. THE MAN.
a. God created “Man.”
b. Man is a “Spirit – Being” that God put in charge of the earth and everything that is on the earth.
“And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.” (Gen. 1:26)
c. Man is “susceptible” to spirits – Holy Spirit or Demon spirits.
d. The human body was designed by God to be a house for “His” Spirit. “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.” (1 Cor. 6:19 – 20)
e. Mankind chooses which spirit he allows to live in him. “And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve;” (Jos. 24:15)
f. Man was the “Crowning Achievement” of God’s ‘creative’ efforts because man was made in the ‘image & likeness’ of God Himself.
g. Satan likes nothing better than to corrupt God’s greatest achievement, “man.”
III. THE DANGER OF REFORMATION WITHOUT REGENERATION.
a. Wicked spirits depart out of people’s lives for a number of different reasons,
A person may come into a church where the Word of God is being preached.
A person may come into a worship service when God is being praised.
A person may decide to pray about the condition of their soul.
Some people just decide to “kick a habit” and turn over a new leaf.
Some people just start making different decisions about how they are going to live – They start going to church and doing things differently.
Any one of these things can cause a demon spirit to move out of a person’s life.
b. When they do this the ‘unclean spirit’ (demon) loses his place.
c. This ‘unclean spirit’ (demon) goes out looking for “Rest” and doesn’t find any.
d. Notice, “When the unclean spirit came back to the person he came out of he found that man empty, swept, and garnished.”
e. The person didn’t have any spirit at all living in his body. – Everything looked good, but there was no one living in the house.
f. This man had cleaned up and decorated his life to make it look better.
g. Have you ever noticed how a house begins to go down when there is no one living in it? – A house needs life to keep it from decaying.
IV. OCCUPING THE HOUSE.
a. There are only two major spiritual forces that are bidding to live in our bodies. – One is the Holy Spirit & the other is the Devil and his demons.