Out of sheer boredom I just read an article online listing several celebrities who actually used the line, “Don’t you know who I am?!” One was arrested for DUI, another was kicked out of a concert for trying to access the VIP area without a badge, and another was thrown out of a bar for being disruptive. When the authorities came to apprehend them, their sad appeal to fame was met with indifference at best: “Don’t you know who I am?!” As the old saying goes, the lion doesn’t have to announce to everyone that he’s a lion.
I thank God that He knows my name. In Christ Jesus we can rejoice that our names are written in Heaven (Luke 10:20). Hallelujah! Heaven knows my name! But have you stopped lately to ask this question…
Does Hell know your name?
“The evil spirit answered them, ‘I know Jesus and I recognize Paul—but who are you?’ Then the man who had the evil spirit jumped on them, overpowered them all, and prevailed against them, so that they ran out of that house naked and wounded.”(Acts 19:15-16, CSB)
Of course the demons knew Jesus. Jesus is God. He created these angels who rebelled against Him and became demons. They knew Jesus very well, and they trembled before Him. They also recognized Paul’s name because he walked closely with Jesus and God was doing powerful things through his Spirit-led obedience. Hell had gotten the word that Paul was not a man demons should mess with. He was no Jesus, but his name was renown among the forces of evil.
“But who are you?” they asked.
One might think the seven sons of Sceva would be known by the demons in the area because they had been practicing magic, sorcery, and exorcisms regularly for quite some time. But no, they didn’t recognize them. At the sight of these pseudo-spirituals, or at the sound of their names, the demons did not shutter. They did not quake with fear. They did not lose their footing. They didn’t even blink. “Sceva? Who’s Sceva? Who are you? And why should we care?”
“I command you by the Jesus that Paul preaches,” they insisted in verse 13, but their words had no authority. No power. No effect. These seven men, renown in their region for being spiritual warriors, were nameless and powerless in Hell’s regime. And when Hell conquered them they ran away naked and ashamed.
Do we not also live in a culture in which Hell’s agents are actively at work to deceive and destroy? Do we not also live in a day in which spiritual leaders flaunt their own names and fame? Do we not also live in a season of history during which those celebrated as spiritual giants among men are being publically stripped and shamed by the powers of Hell? Perhaps this story is more relevant to us, today, than we think.
If we are interested in overcoming Hell’s armies, there is only one name that matters: the name of Jesus, the Christ. And we cannot claim any secondary connection to Him as if “the Jesus whom Paul preaches,” “the Jesus my grandmother knows,” or “the Jesus my pastor talks about” might do the trick. Hell does not fear those who rise to fame among men. Hell fears those who know and walk closely with Jesus.
Does Hell know your name?
Grace and Peace,