About Jesus - Steve Sweetman

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Disarming Darkness

As Jesus was being arrested He made a staggering statement.  "This is the hour when darkness rules (Luke 22:53 NIV)."  Think about it.  The Lord of all there is conceded that for the next few hours of His earthly life darkness would dominate.  I believe the Apostle Paul sheds further light on how Jesus would deal with this dominating darkness.  Jesus "disarmed the powers and authorities and disgraced them publicly; He triumphed over them by Him (Colossians 2:15 HCSB)." 


In Ephesians 6:12 Paul said that our fight is "against powers of the dark world spiritual forces of evil (NIV)".  The powers and authorities Paul referenced in Colossians 2:15 and the darkness that dominated the last few hours of Jesus earthly life were demonic powers.  It appears to me that when Jesus was arrested this demonic army began to crash down upon Him in all of its furious anger and terror that culminated in His execution.


It's not that this satanic assault usurped God's universal authority because it didn't.  It was God's will to crush Jesus and cause Him to suffer (Isaiah 53:10).  How heart wrenching it must have been for God to hear Jesus ask, "Why have you forsaken me (Mark 15:34)?"  Humanity cannot begin to imagine what this satanic assault looked liked.  The painful agony, the haunting loneliness, and the horror of it all, is beyond human comprehension.   


The Greek word "apekdyomai" is translated as "disarmed" in Colossians 2:15.  It means "to drive away from one's self."  It's an aorist Greek participle and in context it means that in one moment of time Jesus drove away from Himself the darkness that was attempting to eliminate His very existence.  This Greek participle tells us that Jesus didn't disarm this demonic force by taking away its powers.  These evil powers are still a force to be reckoned with (Ephesians 6:10 - 19).  Jesus drove the darkness away from Himself and thus triumphed over it.  In my mind I picture this to be one explosive, even violent, display of power.  I doubt that the most creative Hollywood studio could successfully capture this authoritative explosion of power on film.   


Jesus definitely disgraced the darkness when He pushed it way from Himself.  It was a public victory as Paul said.  Of course, humanity couldn't see into the spiritual world where Jesus' victory was a public display, but the angels in Heaven would have seen it.  I picture the heavenly angelic world rising in unison and erupting into a massive and exuberant outburst of celebratory applause.  I've sat in a stadium with 50,000 screaming baseball fans but their celebration would be a boring yawn when compared to this outburst of emotion by myriads of angelic beings. 


These powers of darkness that came crashing down on Jesus still swirl around us in the spirit world today.  I'm confident that Jesus can help us drive them away from our lives, but they're not our only enemy.  The Apostle James told us that we are dragged away from Jesus by our own evil desires.  Sometimes we are our own worst enemy, but Paul was right when he proclaimed that our Lord Jesus Christ can rescue us from our body of sin (Romans 7:24 -25).   


While living in the suburbs of Washington, D. C., in the early 1980's I discovered American patriotism as is sung in the presidential anthem "Hail to the Chief".  Well, my patriotism is directed to the Chief of Chiefs.  I sing, "All hail the power of Jesus name, let angels prostrate fall, bring forth the royal diadem, and crown Him Lord of all!" 


Jesus is supreme over all things spiritual and all things material.  He is one of a kind.  There is no one just like Him.  He has no competition.  He has no rivals.  He causes nations to rise and He causes nations to fall.  He is ultimate truth.  His word is final.  All things were created by Him and for Him.  Those who oppose Him will eventually fall at His feet and concede that Jesus has always been, and forever will be, Lord of all.  We give thanks to the Lord Jesus Christ because being  Lord He has become our Saviour.  He stood strong when darkness dominated.  In one moment of an authoritative, dynamic display of power, He drove away the darkness from His presence.  He is the ultimate champion. 


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