“You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons” (1 Cor. 10:21).
This warning comes following Paul’s sweeping appraisal of Old Israel who had been baptized in the cloud and in the sea, who ate spiritual food, and drink spiritual drink, but they fell in the wilderness because they were idolaters. They grumbled and complained about God’s provision and craved evil things. And Paul says that in that condition when they offered sacrifices to God, they were actually sacrificing to demons.
This really is the table of the Lord regardless of who comes and how they come, but Paul says precisely because that is the case, the Lord can be provoked to jealousy, and He can leave you to your idols. One of the ways God deals with hypocrites is by handing them over to their sins.
How does this happen? James says that friendship with the world is enmity with God. Anyone who wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. He continues: Therefore, submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
So, do want to be free from every demon? Do you want to resist the devil in such a way that he will flee from you? Do you want to scare all the evil away? Then you must submit to God completely.
In the Lord of the Rings, Gandalf says Bilbo must leave the ring of power behind before leaving to go to Rivendell, and after a great struggle, Bilbo agrees to leave the ring behind, but he doesn’t actually rid himself of the ring. Gandalf has to remind him that he still has the ring.
So many Christians know that they must give up their sin, and they struggle mightily with the idea of that, and occasionally come to the conclusion that they really must be done with it, and then they mistake that resolution for real peace. But no, you really must put it down, lay it down, and walk away. That is submission to God, and when you do that, the devil will flee from you.
So as you come to this table, do not merely agree with God that your sin must go, commit to doing whatever needs to be done to actually rid yourself of that sin.
So come and welcome, to Jesus Christ.