Realizing the presence, promise, and power of the Kingdom of God.
The DEEP

Jesus Flips A Vicious Insult

He turns the insult into a teachable moment.

Luke 11:14-20 (ESV)

Now he was casting out a demon that was mute. When the demon had gone out, the mute man spoke, and the people marveled. But some of them said, “He casts out demons by Beelzebul, the prince of demons,” while others, to test him, kept seeking from him a sign from heaven. But he, knowing their thoughts, said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and a divided household falls. And if Satan also is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand? For you say that I cast out demons by Beelzebul. And if I cast out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they will be your judges. But if it is by the finger of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.

They’re accusing Jesus of witchcraft – using the power of Satan to perform a miracle. This is an outrageous accusation and Jesus could have really lit into them for making it.

But instead He converts this into a teachable moment. Casting out demons by the power of Satan is ridiculous. Why would the prince of demons fight against his own demons? It’s like accusing Eisenhower of winning the battle of the bulge by colluding with Hitler. Why would Hitler fight against his own army? That would be nuts.

Every kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and a divided household falls. And if Satan also is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand?

Then comes a stunning twist. And if I cast out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they will be your judges.

Some of their sons are disciples!* No wonder they were making such desperate arguments. There’s a contentious back-story behind their actions.

So, Jesus takes the argument to its logical conclusion. But if it is by the finger of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.

The kingdom of God has arrived.


Jesus’ clever apologetic is a lesson for us all. It’s hard to resist the temptation to strike back when insulted, especially when the insult is ridiculous. Jesus handles this amazingly.

But how should we react if things turn ugly? Of course, responding in love and humility are a given. If only we had the self-control to do it!

The key isn’t great technique; it’s prayer. Always ask for help.

*Some believe that their sons were just using Old Testament exorcism techniques, but the Old Testament has no record of anything like that.


The weekly study guides, which include discussion questions, are available for download here:

https://www.ailbe.org/resources/itemlist/category/91-deep-studies

Mike Slay

As a mathematician, inventor, and ruling elder in the Presbyterian Church in America, Mike Slay brings an analytical, conversational, and even whimsical approach to the daily study of God's Word.

Join the Ailbe Community

As a member of the Ailbe Community you join a movement for revival, renewal, and awakening built upon prayer, sharing, and mutual edification. The Ailbe Community is devoted to practicing the Kingship of Jesus in every area of our lives.

No items in cart