Tag Archives: seven sons of sceva

A Credible Faith

Have you ever had a boss who had no idea how to do what you do, and then tried to tell you how to do your job? I’ve had my fair share of those. Early in my career, I determined that when I rose to the rank of manager I would take it upon myself to learn each job in the store so I could better lead them and understand them. I spent a week at each position, which didn’t make me an expert, but went a long way towards being empathetic to what each team member went through. It also helped me to be able to teach them and new employees going forward. I’ve always believed credibility was a key component of leadership, and I wanted to have it.

Credibility is also a key component of faith. Think of the seven sons of Sceva. These men tried to cast out demons “in the name of Jesus whom Paul preaches.” One of the demons retorted, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know, but who are you?” (Acts 19:13-15 NIV) Those men wanted to power of Jesus name without taking time to sit at His feet. They’re not so different from so many people today. They want to bear the name of Christ without reading His Word, spending time in prayer or applying Scripture to their lives. Faith is not something you talk about, it something you must live in order to be credible talking about it.

Ezra was a good example of a credible leader. Ezra 7:10 says, “For Ezra had set his heart (resolved) to study and interpret the Law of the LORD, and to practice it and teach His statutes and ordinances in Israel” (AMP). He didn’t just read Scripture, he studied it, interpreted it and applied it. So when it came time to teach it, he was credible. God honors our faith when we take the time to study, interpret and apply what He’s told us to do. He then puts us in position to teach others and to help them grow. Your credibility comes when you move past the knowledge piece of His Word and start applying it. When you do that, you can speak with confidence and authority.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

A VIP


Several years ago, the company I was doing a store visit for the company I work for. The store was very busy and there was about a thirty minute wait to see a rep. I was making sure everyone was helped in order and was adding them to the queue. A blonde lady walked in with big sunglasses, leopard print clothes, and a small dog in her purse. When I told her she had to wait, she said, “But I’m a VIP!” I said, “I’m sorry, ma’am. Who are you?” She told me her name, but I didn’t recognize it. I said, “I don’t know who you are, but you’ll have to wait like everyone else.”

She asked for a manager. She insisted she was a VIP and didn’t wait in lines. The manager went through the same thing and gave the same answer. Finally it hit me. “Do you mean you’re a part of our VIP program?” “Yes!” “Oh, well that doesn’t exclude you from waiting in lines, it just gives you discounts,” I replied. Over and over though, she kept repeating that she was a VIP and deserved special treatment. I pulled up our VIP program and showed her, but she didn’t want to hear it. In her mind, she was more than a VIP customer, she thought she really was a VIP.

It reminded me of the seven sons of Sceva. They thought they were someone because they were sons of a Jewish High Priest. They went around casting out demons in people by saying, “I command you in the name of Jesus, whom Paul preaches!” Well in Acts 19:15, a demon called them out on it. The evil spirit said to them, “I know Jesus, and I know about Paul; but you—who are you?” (GNT) These guys thought they were VIP’s in the spiritual realm, but the demons didn’t even know who they were.

Who are you? That question goes out to each of us today. Do we know who we are in Christ or are we trying to get by using the faith of our parents? Have you made the sacrifices in prayer, in the Word, and in living the Christian life so that you’re known in the spiritual realm? In God’s kingdom, being a VIP isn’t about looking and acting the part. If you want to be a who’s who in God’s kingdom, you’re going to have to be a living sacrifice that’s pleasing to God. He rewards humility over pride and suffering over pleasure.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized