Sermon Transcript – Freed From the Dominion of Darkness

Series C – Fifth Sunday After Pentecost – Sunday, June 19, 2016 | Pr. Chris Rosebrough

Welcome to the Teaching Ministry of Kongsvinger Lutheran Church. Kongsvinger is a beacon for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and is located on the plains of Northwestern Minnesota.
We proclaim Christ and Him crucified for our sins and salvation by grace through faith alone, and now, here’s a message from Pastor Chris Rosebrough:
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0:29the holy Gospel According to Saint Luke chapter 8 verses 26-39
0:36then they sailed to the country of the garrisons which is opposite in Galilee when Jesus had stepped out on land there
0:43met him a man from the city who had demons for a long time he had worn no
0:48clothes he had not lived in a house but among the tombs when he saw Jesus he cried out
0:54and fell down before him and said with a loud voice what have you to do with me Jesus Son of the most high God
1:01I beg you do not torment me freed commanded the unclean Spirit to come out of the man for many a time it
1:09had seized him he was kept under guard bound with chains and shackles but he
1:14would break the bonds and be driven by the demon into the desert Jesus then asked him what is your name
1:21and he said Legion for many demons had entered him and They begged him not to
1:26command them to depart into the abyss now a large herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside and They begged
1:33him to let them enter these so he gave them permission then the demons came out of the man and entered the Pigs and The
1:40Herd rushed down the Steep Bank into the lake and drowned when the herdsmen saw what had happened they fled and told it
1:48in the city and in the country then people went out to see what had happened and they came to Jesus and found the man
1:54from whom the demons had gone sitting at the feet of Jesus clothed and in his
1:59right mind and they were afraid and those who had seen it told them how the
2:05demon-possessed man had been healed then all the people of the surrounding country the garrisons asked him to
2:10depart from them for they were seized with great fear so he got into the boat and returned the man from whom the
2:17demons had gone out begged that he might be with him but Jesus sent him away saying return to your home and declare
2:24how much God has done for you and he went away proclaiming throughout the whole city how much Jesus had done for
2:31him in the name of Jesus so we’ve got a dark topic today and
2:37we’re going to be talking about well demons but we’ll also get a healthy dose
2:42of Jesus in there I remember the late Walter Martin he talked about the
2:47importance of understanding that we actually face as Christians a very serious and deadly Foe and those who do
2:54not recognize this foe well they’re like ostriches they stick their head in the
2:59sand but in a battle like this that we find ourselves in against an enemy like the devil and his demons well a
3:06Christian ostrich with its head in the sand will find itself having the Flaming darts of the enemy sticking out of its
3:12well rear end right so let us not be like that all
3:18right let us understand that demons are real and what we’ll be doing today we’re going to be looking at how the
3:26Demonic even affects our own lives and we need to recognize it for what it is because what we find in this text is the
3:34very sad story that ends has a good ending of a man who literally was overcome by the Demonic to the point
3:41where he was literally out of his mind right and Jesus heals him and the
3:47reality is is that we all still face the Demonic and each and every one of us were born under the Dominion of Darkness
3:54this is a true fact of scripture and as we will see the devil still desires to
4:01well deceive you and woo you back under his dominion and there’s a way in which he does it very specifically which we’ll
4:08look at today so with that we’re going to be looking at our gospel text We Begin it says then they sailed to the
4:15country of the garrisons this is Jesus and his Entourage of disciples they sailed to the country of the garrisons
4:20which is opposite of Galilee you can read into that Pagan territory in fact
4:26if you were to travel to the Holy Land not that I’ve done that and I’ve done it well via Google Earth and things like
4:32that I I I traveled the world using other people’s vacation photos but there’s a very important site near this
4:39region near this this territory which well is the Temple of Zeus
4:45the Temple of Zeus they worshiped well Pagan deities here this is idolatry that
4:51we’re talking about and it’s important for us that we understand what’s going
4:56on when it comes to idolatry let me read a little bit more and we’ll do some cross-reference work here’s one says
5:02when Jesus had stepped out on the Land There met him a man from the city who had demons
5:09so here we got a man who is demon-possessed in Pagan territory and
5:15very close to this site this war that took place is the Temple of Zeus let me
5:20draw your attention to First Corinthians chapter 10 which reveals to us the true nature of this type of idolatry where
5:27Paul discusses whether or not we as Christians have the freedom to well eat food that is sacrificed to Idols Paul
5:33says something very important there first Corinthians chapter 10 starting at verse 14 Paul writes therefore my
5:40beloved flee from idolatry he’s writing to Christians flee from idolatry
5:46remember the first commandment you will have no other gods before me so Paul writing to Christians says we need to
5:52flee from idolatry idolatry is a real threat here he says I speak as the sensible people judge for yourselves
5:58what I say the cup of blessing that we bless is it not a participation in the blood of Christ well of course it is the
6:05answer is yes to that talking about the Lord’s Supper the bread that we break is it not a participation in the body of
6:11Christ again the answer is yes indeed it is because there is one bread we who are
6:16many are one body for we all partake of the one bread consider the people of Israel
6:22are not those who eat the sacrifices participants in the altar the answer to
6:27the question is yes indeed they are so what do I imply then that food offered
6:33to Idols is anything or that an idol is anything
6:38your translation may say or that an idol has existence that’s a good way to
6:43translate this as well you know just because somebody worships Zeus does that mean that Zeus exists
6:50no indeed Zeus does not exist in fact if you were to call Zeus right now you’d
6:56get the dude we’re sorry the number you’re trying to reach has been no longer in service right never was in
7:02service anyway right so what then is going on with all of
7:08this idolatry going on Paul then says this no I imply what Pagan’s sacrifice
7:15they offer to Demons and not to God
7:22let that one roll around in your head for a minute the scripture literally teaching that
7:27people who are making sacrifices to Shiva Vishnu even Allah
7:36that they are sacrificing and following demons answer yes
7:43that’s what we’re talking about here all of these other religions set up in
7:49the world they are not different paths that lead to the same God
7:55if by that you mean eternal life these are religions animated
8:02and well made possible by the Demonic and you need to consider that this is what scripture says so what Pagan
8:09sacrifice they offered to Demons not to God I don’t want you to be participants with demons you cannot drink the cup of
8:15the Lord and the cup of demons you cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons shall we provoke
8:22the Lord to jealousy are we stronger than he
8:28no we’re not another cross-reference one that hits a little closer to home
8:35First Timothy Chapter 4 verses 1 and 2 says this Paul writing again under this
8:40inspiration of the spirit says now the Holy Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith
8:50they will leave Christianity is what he’s saying and here’s why by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and the
8:58doctrines of demons through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared
9:06so think of it this way when we look at the Grand sweep of idolatry out there Eleanor and there’s a lot out there
9:12you can take a look at the world religions this is animated by demons
9:18but within the visible Church there are people who are Liars who are following
9:24deceitful spirits and are literally teaching the doctrines of demons
9:29you can think of it as a christianized veneer for what it really is idolatry
9:36you want to see what that looks like turn on TBN or God TV
9:43that’s what this looks like that’s what he’s referring to so keep in mind the demonic
9:50desires to deceive you and put you back under the Dominion of Darkness
9:57important point we return now to Our Gospel text for a long time this demoniac had worn
10:04no clothes I’m sure that was a sight to see he had not lived in a house but
10:10among the tombs you can think what a tortured Soul this man is now the Church Father Cyril of Alexandria when he
10:16preached on this text made an interesting point here’s what he said in great misery and nakedness this man
10:22wandered among the graves of the dead he was in utter wretchedness leading a
10:28disgraceful life he was proof of the cruelty of the demons and a plain
10:34demonstration of their impurity whoever they possess and subject to their power at once they make him an
10:41example of great misery deprived of Every Blessing destitute of all sobriety
10:46and entirely deprived even of Reason itself
10:52so consider this one of the things that this text is showing us is the true nature of the
10:59demonic it’ll befriend you at first
11:05and then subject you to it and then deprive you of even reason itself
11:11this is how the Demonic Works they’re not our friends now coming back to the point I was
11:17making I’d like to do a little cross-reference work in the Epistle of Jude Jude
11:22starting at verse three there’s only one chapter there
11:28the half-brother of Jesus writes beloved although I was eager to write to you about our common salvation I found it
11:35necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the Saints and here’s
11:41the reason why for certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were
11:47designated for this condemnation they are ungodly people who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and denying
11:56our only master and Lord Jesus Christ now I want to remind you Jude writes
12:02that although you once fully knew it that Jesus who saved the people out of the land of Egypt afterward destroyed
12:08those who did not believe and the angels who did not stay with their own position
12:13of authority but left their proper dwelling he has kept in Eternal chains
12:18under great gloomy Darkness until the Judgment of the great day little note
12:23here the demonic what the demons are are fallen angels
12:31scripture doesn’t tell us when the coup d’etat take took place
12:36but we know some of the details of the coup d’etat that took place in heaven Lucifer
12:42that’s his name Lucifer who actually stood in the presence of God himself
12:49well became quite conceited and stuck on himself and wanted to be higher than the
12:54most high God himself and somehow through whatever machinations of his
12:59sick mind deceived and recruited one-third
13:05of all of the angels of heaven to join him in a rebellion against God
13:10and they were cast down to earth that’s where the demons come from
13:15and you’ll notice in Jude here Jude uses this phrase that they are kept under gloomy Darkness
13:23Eternal chains until the Judgment of the great day and I highlight that phrase
13:28for a very specific reason because Jude here is talking about the demonic but in
13:33just a second he’s going to talk about the deceivers in the church the idolaters who are doing the work of the
13:40Demons and he says of them that their Eternal
13:45fate is the exact same fate as the Demonic and the reason is quite simple
13:51they’re doing the the Demonic bidding they’re teaching doctrines of demons
13:56so Jude continues just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities
14:01which likewise indulged in sexual immorality and pursued a natural desire
14:07you can read into that phrase homosexuality pursued a natural desire they serve as
14:13an example by undergoing a punishment of Eternal fire yeah Jude right there makes
14:19it very clear that God does not bless same-sex sex attraction or marriage or anything of the sort and anybody who
14:26says in the name of Jesus God is blessing these things is a liar and a deceiver and teaching contrary to
14:33scripture in fact I would argue they are teaching doctrines of demons
14:39he continues he doesn’t like manner these people these false teachers listen to their description here they rely on
14:46their dreams they defile the flesh they reject Authority and they blaspheme the
14:53Glorious ones but when the Archangel Michael contending with the devil was disputing
14:58about the body of Moses he did not presume to pronounce a Blasphemous judgment but he said the Lord rebuke you
15:04but these people blaspheme all that they do not understand and they are destroyed
15:09by all that they like unreasoning animals understand instinctively woe to
15:17them they walk in the way of Cain abandon themselves for the sake of gain to
15:22balaam’s error they perished in korra’s Rebellion some time ago here at Kong’s Binger
15:29actually noted that these three men Cain Balaam and Cora represent kind of like
15:35the three major types if you would of false teachers Cain is the guy who goes
15:40through all the religious motions but has no faith offers sacrifices but doesn’t love or even truly trust in God
15:49Cora well he led a rebellion against Moses basically saying that everybody is
15:56special everybody is Holy and you Moses have usurped your Authority and you have
16:02made yourself a prince over us this is an example of what we call the yantolovan spirit and you can find it in
16:08number 16. it is korra’s rebellion which does not properly recognize the offices
16:13that God has established in his own church and balaam’s error while Balaam is the guy who
16:19well he’s a prophet for profit is the best way to put it you know when the
16:24coin and the Coffer clings I’ll give you a vision from God right that’s what Balaam is all about and those are your
16:31three primary types of false teachers but Jude writes about them these are
16:36hidden reefs at your love feasts as they Feast with you without fear they are
16:41Shepherds who feed only themselves and by feeding themselves that means they basically have a vacuum cleaner
16:48that wonderfully and quite efficiently is able to suck the money right out of your wallet into theirs they are
16:55fruitless trees in late Autumn they’re twice dead uprooted Wild Waves of the
17:01sea casting up the foam of their own shame they are wandering stars stars by which you cannot navigate For Whom the
17:08Gloom listen to this the Gloom of utter Darkness has been reserved the same fate the demons will face these
17:17false teachers will face as well Peter writing about them in second Peter says this verse 1 but false prophets
17:25also Rose Among the people just as there will be false teachers among you who will secretly bring in destructive
17:30heresies oh what a passe word that word is heresies you still use that term oh
17:36yeah we do it’s a Biblical word they will secretly bring in destructive
17:42heresies even denying the master who bought them bringing upon themselves Swift destruction and sadly Peter
17:49prophesies that many will follow their sensuality their self-abandonment is a good way to translate that word and
17:55because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed and in their greed they will exploit you with false Words Their
18:02condemnation from long ago is not idle their destruction is not asleep verse 17
18:07of that chapter then says this these are waterless Springs Mists driven by a storm for them the Gloom of utter
18:14Darkness has been reserved same fate the demons will face these
18:20false teachers will face for speaking loud boasts of folly they entice by sensual passions of the
18:27flesh those who are barely escaping from those who live in error they promised them freedom but they themselves are
18:33slaves of corruption
18:39and I say all of this for a very important reason we must recognize the
18:44false teachers for what they are they are teaching the doctrines of
18:50demons and our text today shows us where that ends up
18:56back to our gospel text so when Jesus saw or when he saw Jesus
19:02the demoniac Cried Out fell down before him and said with a loud voice what have
19:08you to do with me Jesus Son of the most high God
19:14Church Father Hillary appointers he noted the fact that well
19:19seems the demons have a better christology and a better understanding of Jesus than the Heretics do
19:25isn’t that bizarre so the demon said I beg you do not torment me for he had commanded the
19:31unclean Spirit to come out of the man for many a time it had seized him he was kept under guard and bound with
19:39chains and shackles but he would break the bonds and be driven by the demon into the desert
19:45Jesus asked him what is your name he said Legion for many demons had
19:50entered him and They begged him not to command them to depart into the abyss now a large herd of pigs was feeding
19:57there on the hillside note this fact that we’re still technically in geographically in Israel
20:04and there in Israel they have a large herd of pigs Jews don’t eat bacon
20:10okay so what’s going to happen next in part is a judgment
20:16keep that in mind it’s a judgment so They begged him not to command them
20:21to Spartan the abyss now a large per Herod of pigs was feeding there on the hillside They begged him to let them
20:27enter these so Jesus gave them permission then the demons came out of the man
20:32entered the Pigs and The Herd rushed down the Steep Bank into the lake and drowned
20:38and all of the farmers and guys who’ve actually raised animals are sitting there trying to calculate the cost of
20:43This Disaster it’s getting up there and right yeah well one Pig costs this much herd has
20:51this many in it oh I hope they’re going to be able to write this off on their taxes
20:57right this is a huge loss Cyril of Alexandria again and his sermon
21:04on this text says this we may also learn this from what befell the herd of swine
21:10wicked demons are cruel they’re mischievous they’re hurtful treacherous to those who are in their
21:18power the fact clearly proves this because they hurried the swine over the precipice and drowned them in the waters
21:24Christ granted their request so that we might learn from what happened to that
21:29to that that their disposition is ruthless demons are bestial incapable of being
21:35softened and solely intent on doing evil to Those whom they can get into their
21:41power so notice the demons didn’t care a hoot about how much that herd of pigs cost
21:47go ahead and throw us into those pigs right again once you see it you can’t unsee it
21:55if there’s anyone serial of Alexandria continues if there’s anyone among us who is wanton
22:02who’s swanish filth loving impure and willingly contaminated with the
22:08Abominations of sin God permits such a one to fall into the power of the Demonic and sink into the abyss of
22:14damnation so let us flee all sin
22:20especially idolatry the text continues when the herdsmen saw
22:25what had happened this is where it gets interesting they fled and told it in the
22:30city and the country then the people went out to see what had happened and they came to Jesus and
22:37found the man whom the demons had gone sitting at the feet of Jesus clothed and
22:42in his right mind and they were afraid
22:49fear overcomes them now there are some today who falsely teach that you can’t
22:55even begin to preach the gospel today until you are able to demonstrate with
23:00signs and wonders and miracles the power of the kingdom of God this is what they
23:06say and it’s complete nonsense here Jesus has demonstrated his power in the
23:12power of the kingdom of God by casting the demons out of this man which none of them could do which resulted in the loss
23:19of all of these pigs and rather than repent and Revival break out in this
23:24region they instead have the exact same response to Jesus that the demons did
23:34are you here to torture us Jesus right the demons were afraid of Jesus and now these people are afraid of Jesus
23:42how is this possible there under the Dominion of Darkness
23:47they think good is evil and they believe that evil is good
23:54they do not see God’s judgment for what it is and so rather than ask Jesus
24:01to be merciful to them to forgive them to set them free from the Demonic they
24:07instead act just like the demons acted afraid of Jesus those who had seen it
24:13told them how the demon-possessed man had been healed and then all the people of the surrounding country the garrisons
24:19asked Jesus to depart from them for they were seized with great fear
24:28you see that’s what happens the Demonic causes you to literally be
24:34out of your mind how is it that they would fear Jesus rather than love him
24:41how is it that they would be afraid of him rather than see him as their liberator
24:49it’s that isn’t it that’s what idolatry does
24:55so they asked Jesus to depart so Jesus got into the boat and he returned
25:02which is a judgment in and of itself fine Jesus says have it your way
25:11so the man though a little bit of a gospel note here the man from whom the demons had gone out
25:17begged that he might be with Jesus
25:24and that’s kind of the little gospel thing in here but see Jesus doesn’t need to physically be with people
25:31Jesus is God in human flesh there is no place that Jesus is not and this is why Jesus says I will never
25:37leave you or forsake you and lo I Am With You Always even to the end of the age and so Jesus although he will not
25:44physically be with this man will be with this man and so he says to
25:50them and here’s what he says return to your home declare how much God has done for you
25:58and he went away proclaiming throughout the whole city how much Jesus had done
26:04for him this former demoniac now becomes a
26:10gospel preacher and he’s going everywhere saying listen let me tell you
26:15what Jesus has done for me I was under the Dominion of Darkness out
26:21of my mind living among the tombs cutting myself I wouldn’t even keep
26:27clothes on me I was quite the wreck I was powerless to free myself from
26:35these demons but Jesus had mercy on me and he cast the demons out and restored
26:42my right mind you say well that’s a great story
26:47for him but I would remind you what Paul writes in Colossians chapter 1 verses 13 and
26:5414. here’s what it says God has delivered us from the Dominion of Darkness
27:01and he God has transferred us into the kingdom of his beloved Son in whom we
27:06have Redemption and the Forgiveness of sins you see the story of this demoniac
27:14is actually the story of all Christians although not all of us
27:19few of us have actually been possessed by demons still all of us were born under the
27:25Dominion of Darkness under the power of the Demonic realm and Christ has powerfully set us free
27:33and liberated us cast the demons out of our lives where did he do this in the waters of our
27:39baptism or when we heard the gospel for the first time and were brought to penance and faith in Christ and now kind
27:47Jesus who is so different than the demons he now sustains Us in the Faith
27:53by feeding us with his word and on communion Sundays feeds us with his very body and blood for the Forgiveness of
27:59our sins Jesus is the Good Shepherd he is the exact opposite of the Demonic Jesus cares nothing about himself rather
28:07than feed himself he feeds us rather than being in it for him Jesus lays down
28:13his life so that we might live
28:19he is the exact opposite of the demonic and so I come back to the point that I
28:25made earlier the Demonic is at work visibly in the church today
28:31how can you spot it simple
28:37does the teaching of the person who’s behind the pulpit or on the stage point you to your crucified and Risen Savior
28:44or does he point you to yourself or Worse does he points you to him at the
28:49end of the day do you feel like you’re not fed and all you’ve done is write a large check so the big seed offering or
28:56expected to pay God some money so that you can receive a miracle
29:01see Jesus doesn’t do miracles for a price he laid down his life freely for you and
29:10gives you salvation and healing and eternal life as a gift
29:16you can always tell the Demonic is always in it for me where Jesus is always in it for you
29:24that’s the difference demons are cruel self-centered egotistical little false
29:32gods Jesus is God in human flesh and although he was equal with God he did not
29:38consider equality with God something to be grasped but he emptied himself and
29:43became obedient even obedient to the point of death on the cross and he did it for you so that
29:50you can live truly we have been delivered from the Dominion of Darkness let us not squander
29:56our Liberation by chasing after the demonic either in sin or in idolatry in
30:02the name of Jesus Amen
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