THE WEEK OF LAETARE – SATURDAY
LESSON: JOHN 7:14-24
“If I cast out demons by Be-elzebul, by whom do your sons cast them out?” Luke 11:19
Jesus certainly confronts His enemies here with a telling and crushing question when He asks them, “If I cast out demons by Be-elzebul, by whom do your sons cast them out?” He means to ask them, “Is it not rabid hatred to condemn in me what you praise in your own children? When your children do something, it is from God; but because I do a thing, it must be from the devil.” That is how the world must react to Christ. What Christ does is of the devil; if someone else did it, it would be right.
This is also the reasoning of the tyrants and enemies of the Gospel today. They condemn in us what they praise in themselves, and they confess it and teach it. This is how they must act, so that the judgment passed on them is publicly approved, namely, that their condemnation is correct. The “sons” who cast out devils, whom Christ mentions here, were, I believe, exorcists who functioned among the people. God bestowed many spiritual gifts on His people from of old. He calls them their “sons” as though He meant them to understand, “I am God’s son and yet I must belong to the devil; but those who are your ‘sons’ born from you do the same as I do but must not be regarded as belonging to the devil.”
PRAYER: Lord Jesus, You suffered scorn, mockery, contempt, and blasphemy for us, and men turned a deaf ear to Your testimony and proclamation. In all this we know, O Lord, that You have set a pattern for us to follow in Your name. Amen.