“And ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan hath bound, lo, these eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the sabbath day?” (Luke 13:16)
“They answered and said unto him, Abraham is our father. Jesus saith unto them, If ye were Abraham’s children, ye would do the works of Abraham.” (John 8:39)
Compare Luke 13:16 with John 8:39 and see what you think. In Luke 13:16, Jesus referred to the woman who had had a spirit 18 years as a “daughter of Abraham”. But in John 8:39, Jesus denied other Jews from calling themselves “Abraham’s children.” Instead, he said, “Ye are of your father the devil.” (John 8:44a)
What then was the outward sign that differentiated this woman from those hypocritical Jews? Jesus states it clearly in the second part of John 8:39: “If ye were Abraham’s children, ye would do the works of Abraham.” What does this say about the woman who had been bound for 18 long years by a “spirit of infirmity”? (Luke 13:11) It says that she was someone who “did the works of Abraham,” unlike the Scribes and Pharisees, whom Jesus condemned.
The term “daughter of Abraham” is equivalent to “true believer” in the context that it is used here. This woman was heaven bound! She was a true woman of faith! Jesus could thus call her a “daughter of Abraham.” But she suffered so much. She suffered from a spirit of infirmity. This spirit of infirmity had bound her, and was destroying her life. What did Jesus do? He cast that spirit out of her — this believing woman. Now may I take a moment to say that many people teach that Christians cannot have a demon. This passage clearly contradicts that!
This woman was precious in Jesus’ sight. Even if others mocked and ridiculed him for what he would do for her — even if the Scribes and Pharisees rejected him for what he stood for — Jesus was not about to hide the fact that this believing woman could be bound by a spirit of infirmity. And although many medical doctors may be good and are given by God, Jesus was not about to send this woman to a medical doctor as his “first choice”.
No, but because of his intensely personal relationship with the Father, Jesus saw beyond the physical realm and understood what was binding this woman – a demonic spirit. With this knowledge, he would have actually been sinning had he sent her to a medical doctor who did not practice deliverance. Even when it was “hard” for his disciples to cast out evil spirits, what did Jesus say? Did he say, “Oh, well, we might as well send her to a doctor, because we can’t seem to solve this one”? No. He explained to them their need, and sometimes even rebuked them for their lack of faith.
“And when he was come into the house, his disciples asked him privately, Why could not we cast him out? And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.” (Mark 9:28-29)
“And I besought thy disciples to cast him out; and they could not. And Jesus answering said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you, and suffer you?” (Luke 9:40-41a)
No, Jesus was not about to let the “theory of the day” prevent him from delivering this woman from the evil spirit that had been tormenting her for eighteen long years. No amount of arguing and persuading on the part of those Pharisees would dissuade him, because he came in order to “proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound.” (Isaiah 61:1b)
Today, I would like to encourage you to seek God in every single area of your life that you sense “bondage”, whether it is physical, emotional, mental, or spiritual. Are you involved in a good church that believes in, and practices, deliverance? A church that does not practice deliverance is missing a very important part of the gospel, and is deficient by biblical standards. The church was called to preach liberty to the captives, and to set the captives free. Is this your experience? If not, may I recommend that you seek God on where he wants to lead you? There is power in the gospel. But many have not experienced it, because they are not in a place where that power is practiced, or put to good effect. In fact, some outright deny it, preferring to practice a merely intellectual gospel that lacks the real power to make a life-changing difference in a person’s life, and particularly in a person who has been held captive by the devil like this woman was.
You can choose to live your life like the Pharisees, denying the power of the gospel, or you can choose to live your life like Jesus. Which one do you choose?
“Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” (2 Timothy 3:5)
“For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power.” (1 Corinthians 4:20)