The Temptation To Be Silent

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Luke 4:32-33

“And they were astonished at his doctrine: for his word was with power. And in the synagogue there was a man, which had a spirit of an unclean devil, and cried with a loud voice,”

It’s 2013, and the word of God is still powerful! We can debate theology, hermeneutics, homiletics or doctrine all day; but the reality is unless it is drawn straight from the word it is powerless. It’s not the religion, the preacher or the doctrine that is powerful; it’s the word of God! Ecclesiastes 8:4 says, “Where the word of a King is, there is power…”! All it takes is one word from the mouth of the King, and creation will begin to flow! Jesus said in Matthew 24:35, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words shall not pass away.” The Psalmist said in Psalm 119:89, “Your word, Lord, is eternal, it stands firm in the heavens”. This word is so powerful that the Psalmist went as far as to say this in Psalm 119:165, “Great peace have they that love thy law, and nothing shall offend them.” The word will not only deliver you, heal you, sanctify you and bless you, but the word will also keep you from offense and fill your life with peace!!

But as powerful as the word is, it is powerless in your life unless it is received. This brings us to the essence of this passage, Jesus is teaching in the synagogue; and suddenly it began to happen, revelation began to flow. The minds and hearts of God’s people began to grasp the reality that the words of Jesus were beyond human, and that this man just might be the messiah! And the Bible says that they were astonished at his doctrine, for his word was with power! It is a beautiful thing when revelation is opened in the hearts of people. But this text isn’t really about the necessity of revelation, or about the power of his word as much as it is about the response of Hell to revelation. As the people began to believe in His word, suddenly verse 33 tells us a man possessed with a devil began to cry with a loud voice. Anytime revelation is released hell will begin to scream at you with a loud voice. His mission is to drown out the word of God with the voice of evil! Any time you get an understanding of how powerful the word of God can be, hell will unleash a distraction that doesn’t whisper in your ear, but rather screams at you from the top of it’s lungs.

As I look at our world today, it is evident that the church is in revival! At FIrst Church Tyler we are currently enjoying revival as well; however, as the church thrives in revival, hell’s voice is loud and clear. And when hell begins to scream it is intended to overwhelm you! 1 school shooting doesn’t cut it, try 19 in the last calendar year; killing 47 innocent people, 20 of which were children age 6-7, while injuring over 25 more! In Kaufman County the Arian Brotherhood, a white supremacy organization, has launched a revenge attack against the Kaufman County District Attorney’s office; having already successfully assassinated the Assistant District Attorney in January, and murdering the District Attorney and his wife in there home the Saturday before Easter. Everywhere we look it appears evil has prevailed! Gay rights and Gay marriages are on the verge of legalization, and nobody is attempting to speak up or speak out about the radically advancing agenda of evil! The voice of the spirit of hell is screaming from the mountain tops, while the voice of truth seems to be quiet, dormant and intimidated! With the onslaught of evil, there is a temptation to be silent! We worry of coming across as extremists, we ponder the effects it will have on our attendance and our perception. So we remain quiet on issues of morality, doctrine and truth. And if this trend continues, hell will prevail…

“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” -Edmond Burke

There is only one way hell will be successful in their attempt to drown out the voice of truth and revelation, and that’s if the church goes silent! Silence is never the answer..

silence

In Judges 13:2 the Bible gives us an introduction into the soon to be parents of Samson. Only at this point in scripture the Bible says that Manoah and his wife were barren. One day as I was studying God spoke a revelation to me. I found out that the name Manoah literally means quiet; and The Lord whispered to my spirit these words…“Quietness produces barrenness”! Israel needed somebody with a voice, and the man with virtue was quiet! If your voice is stopped you will become barren and unproductive!

In Esther chapter 4 we see the dialogue between Esther and her uncle Mordecai regarding her purpose in the palace. Esther is struggling with her mission, she’s afraid of the King’s law, and she began to think that since she was in the palace that she would be ok. In Esther 4:14 in the NIV Mordecai says, “For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance will for the Jews will arise from another place (God will keep his church), but you and your father’s family will perish…” In other words he was telling Esther that if she remains silent in this critical hour of the church, that she will be lost! Again I say, silence is not the answer!

I love how Jesus responds to this spirit, as he shows us what our response should be as well. He looks that man in the face and says in Luke 4:35, “…hold thy peace, and come out of him…” Basically Jesus was saying, “Devil, shut your mouth and leave them alone”!! The only way to counteract the voice of evil, is to respond with a voice of truth! It’s not time to be quiet, it’s time the church arose from the doldrums of normality with a voice in this generation!!

In Revelations 5:2 John saw a strong angel proclaim with a loud voice! This tells me that the strength of the church is determined by the volume of it’s voice! If we are to be a strong church in these last days, we need a loud voice in this generation! And in Revelations 20:3 John sees an angel with the key and chain! Here we find 2 critical elements to success; the key to success is a church with a voice! The result of the voice is the chain of truth! And the vision tells us that that angel equipped with the key and the chain, bound the devil with truth!! And SHUT HIM UP with his voice!!

When the church arises with a loud voice of it’s own, we are given the key to operate like Jesus did in Luke 4, to yell back at those voices from hell… Devil shut your mouth, and leave us alone! We’re not a weak church, we’re not an intimidated church; we are a strong church, with a loud voice!!

John the Baptist broke the silence of 400 years with a voice!! He was prophesied as the voice of him crying in the wilderness!! The only way to break through the silence of our generation and allow the revelation of God to flow is to awake from our complacency with a voice like never before!!

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