Mark 1:21-28

This was not a typical Sunday morning. This was a day when church got a little crazy. There was a man in church who had a demonic spirit. As Jesus taught about the kingdom of God, the unclean spirit cried out—right in the middle of church, a grown man screaming at the top of his lungs! It was crazy! No one knew what to do. However, Jesus was there. Jesus turned to the man and cast out the demon. It was amazing! No one had ever seen anything like this. All were taken aback by the authority with which Jesus taught and cast out the demon. Jesus was there, and He was the real deal.

Transformed 1: The Disciples
Simon, Andrew, James and John had just been called as Jesus’ first disciples. Little did they know what would happen at church that morning. This Man, Jesus, for whom they had left their fishing nets, not only knew God’s Word, but He taught it with authority and cast out demons in church. Wow, what was God up to? What would it mean to follow this Man and be His disciple?

Transformed 2: The Crowd
Who is this Jesus? Didn’t He grow up in Nazareth? Isn’t He Joseph’s boy? How did He learn Scripture so well? Where did He learn to teach this well? How was He able to command the demon to obey Him? Is He the same as one of the prophets had been? Has God finally remembered us?

Transformed 3: The Man with a Demon
I’ve been miserable. I wanted to follow God, but I was so tormented. I didn’t know what to do or to whom to turn. I had given up hope. Then Jesus came to church and everything changed. He began teaching about the kingdom of God, and then something strange took place. I really don’t know how to describe it; but before I knew what happened, I was free. Everything had changed. Jesus had given me life. He transformed my life. I was free.

An encounter with Jesus is transforming, but how are we transformed by Jesus today? The answer is found in obedience. Jesus’ call today is the same as it was with His first disciples: “Follow Me.” Following Jesus means we no longer are in the lead. We no longer call the shots. We follow Jesus wherever He leads. That is called obedience. It is through obedience we find our lives transformed.

As Jesus was preparing to face the cross, He told His disciples, “If you love Me, keep my commandments. And I will pray to the Father, and He will give you another Helper that He may abide with you forever” (John 14:15-16). If we are following Jesus in love, we will find ourselves walking in obedience. Jesus does not leave us to our own strength to be transformed, but gives us His Spirit to bring about change from within. Following Jesus is transforming. He makes us more like Him as we walk in love and obedience day by day.

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