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Mar 08, 2020

Encounters: Our Enemies (Click here for Resources)

Passage: Mark 5:1-20

Speaker: Brian Land

Series: Encounters with Jesus

Category: Grace Brevard

Keywords: jesus, evil, demons, possession, lord, heal, free, forces

THEMES & NOTES: In our modern times we can easily look on stories like this with scepticism, treating them like a fairy tale. But the actual truth is that we are primarily fighting a spiritual war (Eph 6:11-13). If we believe that there is an Invisible Eternal God, then it is only logical to believe that there is an invisible battle with forces attempting to usurp this God. We are assured in this passage that it is indeed no contest at all. Jesus has the full authority over all evil spiritual forces. They are all “on a leash” and can go no further than the Lord allows (see Job 1). For those in Christ we have been given the power (primarily of prayer) to fight these principalities. They cannot and will not overcome us. The end result (once again) is that we express the love, hope and healing we’ve been given by loving the Lord and sharing what He has done with others. (Similar topic as last week: Spiritual Warfare, Jesus’ authority and victory over spirits, and how he sets us free)

Order of Worship

CALL TO WORSHIP: Psalm 57:1-2,10-11

SONG: This Is My Father’s World

SONG: No One But You

READING: Ephesians 2:1-5 

SONG: All the Poor & Powerless

  • BAND: Dave & Hannah Moeslein, Heather Comtpon, Danny McMahon,  

PRAYER: Mission of the Church (from The Book of Common Prayer)

ALL: Everliving God, whose will it is that all should come to you through the finished work of your Son. Inspire our witness to Him, that all may know and extend the power of Christ’s forgiveness and the hope of His resurrection; who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, One God, now and forever. Amen.  

RETURN: Surrounded 

MESSAGE:  Encounters: Our Enemies


CENTRAL TEXT: Mark 5:1-20


SONG: Build My Life

SONG: Doxology

BENEDICTION:  1 Peter 5:8-10 & I John 4:4 


  • John 10:10 
  • Matthew 4:23-24
  • Mark 9:25-39 


3.08.20 Album


1) The Spiritual Realm

Consider all the art/media that deal with good vs. evil. Why is that?

Like last week, start to talk about your thoughts, fears and experiences with “Spiritual Forces” .

This good vs. evil battle come right after Jesus calms the storm. How are these two related?

2) The Spiritual Battle

This passage reveals the clearest demonic battle in scripture. What are some of the pieces that stick out to you?

    How is it that demon forces can overtake someone?

    How is it that demon forces sometimes “merely” influence?

    Note how these forces “dehumanized” this man.

    How do they try to do the same to us (make us less human)?

    Is the fight shown here an equal battle? How does Jesus win?

3) My Spiritual Battle

How have you seen/felt dark-influence in your life?

In what ways have you “walked among the tombs” (associated with darkness, evil, deadness)?

What are God’s goals and the demons’ goals for you (John 10:10)?

4) My Spiritual Hope

  1. a) When Jesus calmed the storm in Matt 4, the disciples asked “Who then is this?” -- which means that Jesus completely broke their categories and they had to re-consider exactly who Jesus was. How is the same thing true here (for us as well)?
  2. b) When the storm was calmed and the disciples reconsidered who Jesus was, they were “AFRAID” -- so were the townsfolks. Why were they afraid?

Compare/Contrast the responses of the healed man and the townsfolks.

Why didn’t Jesus let the healed man go “with” him?

    Note how The Kingdom was built through this warfare.

    How is the same calling and hope true for us?


  • “There are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about the devils. One is to disbelieve in their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel an excessive and unhealthy interest in them. They themselves are equally pleased by both errors and hail a materialist or a magician with the same delight.” C.S. Lewis (The Screwtape Letters)
  • “Evil rejects reason and contemplation, and it is fundamentally unreflective.” - Elizabeth Brueni
  • “Jeffrey Lieberman, the chairman of Columbia’s psychiatry department, told me that if you conducted a survey of the population seeking exorcisms, a great majority would likely suffer from a known psychiatric condition, and dissociative identity disorder would be “at the top of that group of conditions.” But Lieberman also acknowledged the possibility that a small percentage of these cases could be spiritual in nature. Over the course of his career, he’s seen a couple of cases that “could not be explained in terms of normal human physiology or natural laws.” - Mike Mariani
  • “We are lived by powers we / pretend to understand” - W.H. Auden
  • “It is inherent in our entire [Western] philosophical tradition that we cannot conceive of a ‘radical evil” by Hannah Arendt