Have you ever casted out a demon before? Or seen an exorcism? I have.
As did Jesus. In fact, He cast 7 demons out of one woman! We know her as Mary Magdalene—the same woman the Bible tells us Jesus approached first after having resurrected.
Now when he rose early on the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, from whom he had cast out seven demons. (Mark 16:9)
In my experience, most church-goers I know remain afraid of demons. They’ll strictly tell you to stay away from witchcraft, fortune tellers, and ouija boards (which is all good as these things are demonic), but they won’t even consider the idea of casting a demon out of a person. But as you pursue Jesus, you will eventually come in contact with the demonic—whether you want to or not (even whether you believe in it or not). Why? Because it is our job as Christians to continue doing what Jesus did while He was physically here.
But my rant tonight is not meant to be on the demonic. It’s meant to be on “the least of these.”
I love that the first person Jesus shows up to is a woman that He cast 7 demons out of. The demonized are the lowest of the low, and when word gets out in most churches that “so-and-so” had a demon cast out of them, “so-and-so” falls down the social ladder.
“Did you hear? Apparently they had a manifestation or a psychotic break or something. We better stay away from them.” Rather than let the grace and power of Jesus win, the demon leaves behind a distinct mark that can only be seen if we’re willing to fear the demonic.
But it’s the once demonized person that Jesus reveals Himself to first, perhaps because Jesus ministered to the lowest of the low in life and now in post-life He does the same.
I once went to a church where everyone was super attractive. And while, yes, super attractive people need Jesus too, we should be filling our walls with the homeless, blind, crippled, toothless, and demonized, because that’s not only where Jesus was, but currently is.
May the resurrection power of Jesus come upon you in a deeper way this Easter. Amen.