Jesus Taught with Authority
Then he returned to Capernaum, a city in Galilee, and preached there in the synagogue every Saturday. Here, too, the people were amazed at the things he said. For he spoke as one who knew the truth, instead of merely quoting the opinions of others as his authority.
Once as he was teaching in the synagogue, a man possessed by a demon began shouting at Jesus, “Go away! We want nothing to do with you, Jesus from Nazareth. You have come to destroy us. I know who you are—the Holy Son of God.”
Jesus cut him short. “Be silent!” he told the demon. “Come out!” The demon threw the man to the floor as the crowd watched, and then left him without hurting him further.
Amazed, the people asked, “What is in this man’s words that even demons obey him?” The story of what he had done spread like wildfire throughout the whole region.
Why was Jesus allowed to teach in the synagogues? Jesus was taking advantageof the policy of allowing visitors to teach. Itinerant rabbis were always welcome to speak to those gathered each Sabbath in the synagogues. The apostle Paul also profited from this practice (see Acts 13:5; 14:1).
Jesus vs. Satan
A man possessed by a demon was in the synagogue where Jesus was teaching. This man made his way into the place of worship and verbally abused Jesus. The people were amazed at Jesus’ authority to drive out demons—evil (unclean) spirits ruled by Satan and sent to harass people and tempt them to sin. Demons are fallen angels who have joined Satan in rebellion against God. Demons can cause a person to become mute, deaf, blind, or insane. Jesus faced many demons during his time on earth, and he always exerted authority over them. Not only did the evil spirit leave this man; Luke records that the man was not even injured. Evil permeates our world, and it is no wonder that people are often fearful. But Jesus’ power is far greater than Satan’s. The first step toward conquering fear of evil is to recognize Jesus’ authority and power. He has overcome all evil, including Satan himself.