Mark 1:21-45: Even the Demons Absolutely Know Who Jesus is! Do You?

Jesus begins His ministry teaching with authority, which impresses the people of Capernaum and everywhere else He went. While He was teaching, a man possessed by an evil spirit called out to Him. We’ll see that Jesus has ultimate power over the unseen realm of darkness. Let’s dig in…

Mark 1:21-45

Jesus Casts Out an Evil Spirit

21 Jesus and his companions went to the town of Capernaum. When the Sabbath day came, he went into the synagogue and began to teach. 22 The people were amazed at his teaching, for he taught with real authority—quite unlike the teachers of religious law.

23 Suddenly, a man in the synagogue who was possessed by an evil (unclean) spirit cried out, 24 “Why are you interfering with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God!”

25 But Jesus reprimanded him. “Be quiet! Come out of the man,” he ordered. 26 At that, the evil spirit screamed, threw the man into a convulsion, and then came out of him.

27 Amazement gripped the audience, and they began to discuss what had happened. “What sort of new teaching is this?” they asked excitedly. “It has such authority! Even evil spirits obey his orders!” 28 The news about Jesus spread quickly throughout the entire region of Galilee.

Jesus Heals Many People

29 After Jesus left the synagogue with James and John, they went to Simon and Andrew’s home. 30 Now Simon’s mother-in-law was sick in bed with a high fever. They told Jesus about her right away. 31 So he went to her bedside, took her by the hand, and helped her sit up. Then the fever left her, and she prepared a meal for them.

32 That evening after sunset, many sick and demon-possessed people were brought to Jesus. 33 The whole town gathered at the door to watch. 34 So Jesus healed many people who were sick with various diseases, and he cast out many demons. But because the demons knew who he was, he did not allow them to speak.

Jesus Preaches in Galilee

35 Before daybreak the next morning, Jesus got up and went out to an isolated place to pray. 36 Later Simon and the others went out to find him. 37 When they found him, they said, “Everyone is looking for you.”

38 But Jesus replied, “We must go on to other towns as well, and I will preach to them, too. That is why I came.” 39 So he traveled throughout the region of Galilee, preaching in the synagogues and casting out demons.

Jesus Heals a Man with Leprosy

40 A man with leprosy came and knelt in front of Jesus, begging to be healed. “If you are willing, you can heal me and make me clean,” he said.

41 Moved with compassion,[i] Jesus reached out and touched him. “I am willing,” he said. “Be healed!” 42 Instantly the leprosy disappeared, and the man was healed. 43 Then Jesus sent him on his way with a stern warning: 44 “Don’t tell anyone about this. Instead, go to the priest and let him examine you. Take along the offering required in the law of Moses for those who have been healed of leprosy.[j] This will be a public testimony that you have been cleansed.”

45 But the man went and spread the word, proclaiming to everyone what had happened. As a result, large crowds soon surrounded Jesus, and he couldn’t publicly enter a town anywhere. He had to stay out in the secluded places, but people from everywhere kept coming to him.

Mark 1:21-45 NLT

Key Points

  • He amazed people with His teaching. In those days, rabbis were teachers of the law. As young Jewish boys came of age, they had to study the law. They would “follow” a rabbi. The way Jesus taught, was so different that He amazed the people. When you listen to a public speaker, you can tell if they are an authority in their particular topic. You also can easily tell who isn’t.
  • The demon-possessed man yells out to Him. The demon knew who Jesus was. This is the main point in knowing about Jesus and that He is the Son of God. Yet, the demon was obviously NOT SAVED. To be saved, you must KNOW JESUS in your heart. The evil spirit also obeyed HIM. Do you?
  • Next, Jesus healed Peter’s mother-in-law. Yes, Peter was married! And like a typical Jewish mother, she got up and made dinner!
  • Then, he heals many sick and demon-possessed people. Interesting that He didn’t want the demons to speak. Maybe He didn’t want another scene like the earlier encounter.
  • Early in the morning, before sunup, Jesus went to pray by Himself. That is a healthy habit all Christians should have — prioritize time in prayer. Even in the midst of a busy ministry, He intentionally made time to pray. He was getting re-energized directly from the Father. Now, that’s the way to start the day!
  • His disciples told Him that people were looking for Him. Word spread quickly back then, even without social media! Jesus replies that they must go to other towns. That’s why He came — to preach the Good News!
  • Leprosy was a horrible disease. It was a highly-contagious skin disorder. Lepers were quarantined and ostracized. When they walked around, they would have to yell, “Unclean! Unclean!”, so that people would avoid them. See, they had “social distancing” back then, too! Here, Jesus does the exact opposite. He touched the leper and healed him. Notice that the leper said, “If you are willing.” He knew Jesus could heal Him, yet he asked. Jesus was willing. Do you ask, “If it’s Your will? Seriously, we mindlessly recite, “Thy will be done.” Do you really know what that means? It means waiting for God’s Will to be applied in your life.
  • He had amazing compassion. He showed love to the leper when everyone else would avoid him.
  • Jesus then told him that he had to go to the priest to be examined and show that he was clean. While the man had leprosy, he could not enter the temple. Finally, he would be able to worship at the temple again.
  • However, the man was so excited about his being healed of that dreadful disease, that he went and told everyone even when Jesus told him not to.

ACTS – Prayer Guide

Growing up Catholic, I knew 3 prayers, the Our Father, Hail Mary and the Act of Contrition. I rattled them off mindlessly.

Here is a guide to help you get into the habit of starting your day talking to JESUS. Yes, JESUS — you don’t need a saint or Mary to intercede for you. If you have a relationship with the Savior, the Holy Spirit guides you in your conversations.

Adoration—praise God and tell Him why you love Him.
Confession—confess your sins to God, ask for His forgiveness, and rejoice in His grace.
Thanksgiving—thank God for specific things (ex: things in your life, things about God, etc.)
Supplication—ask God for His help with specific requests (ex: healing, provision, freedom from selfishness and shame)

From Berea, 30 Days in the Gospel of Mark in the free YouVersion Bible App.

Related: Put on the Whole Armor of God to Combat the Evil Forces of the Unseen Realm.

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Jesus is knocking at the door of your heart — let Him in!

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