Acts 16:16-18 “Silencing the lies”
May 18 2020
“Silencing the lies”
In Acts 16:16-18 Luke tells us of an interesting phenomenon that occurred while the Lord was working transforming lives in Macedonia and that was that satan was busy sowing lies. Luke tells us that it involved a slave girl who.
a. Was “possessed with a spirit of divination”: Literally, “a spirit of a python” In Greek mythology a Python was the serpent that kept guard at one of the temples dedicated to Apollos. People would consult Apollos by putting questions to the priests who would then come back with vague answers in which the voices would change as they gave the answers. All this centered on a possessed serpent embodying humans.
b. She “brought her masters much profit by fortune-telling.”: The Greek and the Romans put a great importance on foretelling the future. No commander or businessman would start out without first consulting a person who they thought was a fortuneteller. Because this young girl was a slave she was making her owners wealthy. The truth is, that the people who flip over cards, read palms or call themselves prophets; at best are accurate because of demonic influence or are con artists trying to cheat people out of money. The victim in this story is this young slave girl’s as she was being prostituted by her owners who exploited her condition for their own benefit.
We are told that she started following Paul around screaming at the top of her voice for many days and Luke tells us that she kept on screaming two things:
a. “These men are the servants of the Most High God”: This is a phrase that meant one thing to believers another to non-believers. To Jews it meant the God of the Bible but to Gentiles it meant that they served Zeus. Here we see one of the tactics of satan and his false teachers, “confuse terms”. They use the same words, but their words have different meanings then the way believers interpret them.
b. “Who proclaim to us the way of salvation.”: In the Greek this phrase literally means that this young girl was proclaiming that Paul was sharing “A” way of salvation and NOT “THE” way of salvation. To believers in God salvation meant deliverance from sin but to the Gentiles it meant release from the powers that govern their fate. Here we see another tactic of satan: “confuse how a person is saved”. He does so two ways:
- It was “A” way. The devil and false teachers say that there are MANY WAYS to be saved and that their way is better.
- Confusing the terms: So that salvation means different things to different people.
Luke tells us how Paul dealt with this as She kept this up for several days. He turned and spoke directly at the lying spirit and said in Jesus’ authority come out of her and instantly it did. Dear ones, God has never needed any help from the devil to attract people to His Son, Jesus. The devil and false teachers are subtle: They use biblical terms and say things that may even have a little truth but mean something different to those who don’t know God. Whenever this happens the truth that the Church wishes to proclaim becomes confused. To proclaim the truth sometimes we will need to silence the lies so people will hear the truth!
This has been Pastor Dale, Blessings!