“. . . many who had unclean spirits, they were coming out of them . . .” Acts 8:7
The Christian life is fundamentally about conflict. At the moment of our salvation we enter into a battle which started at the fall of the enemy from heaven. There are forces in our world who are at opposition with God’s will. We are not excluded from the attack of opposition. The world is a battleground of casualties and consequences of real proportions.
The apostles knew that to bring the message of Jesus to others they would be met with stubborn hostility and prejudice. They knew it would be a long siege of right over wrong. The condition in which Philip found the city of Samaria represents the three battlegrounds of the entire world. They are the same conditions Christianity has always had to fight.
The heart is deceptive and wicked. No one is exempt from the fallen state of the heart. The world is dying from the disease of sin. The aches, the sharp-shooting pains in the souls, the burning of our thoughts, the palpitations of a heart longing for a cure. Only God can deliver us from the darkness of our heart.
Our problem can’t be cured with mere intellectual insight because there’s always the tendency to mislabel our struggles as quirk or inclination. When we are held in the grip of self-centeredness and self-seeking, gripped by false ideas and tempting lies of the enemy, until we see our way clear about our sin condition, Christ will be a rock of stumbling offense.
Simon, the sorcerer had deluded Samaria with false beliefs and deceptive works. Many today are entangled by deep deluded ideas about God. The gospel requires time to make its way through the citadels of the soul, to breakdown and break through, to startle and stun with truth, that frees us from the lies we’ve believed.
The hinge on which victory over these areas swing, is who is in charge? Is it Christ, or you? Who rules in these arenas determines the outcome. Somebody is going to lead our life. As Christians we must be clear about the result of Jesus ruling over our heart.
Who’s in charge of your life?