Have you ever noticed times when you suddenly become aware of an object, word or name that seems to appear everywhere you look? Maybe you can recall a time when, for example, you bought a new (or new used) car. Suddenly, you begin to notice all the other cars that are the same color and model as yours. Apparently, this phenomenon even has a name. It’s called “frequency illusion”.
During the writing of my Bible study, LEGION: Rediscovering the God Who Rescues Me (based on the story of the man rescued from an army of demons), I noticed things I hadn’t paid as much attention to before: books and memes and sermons on the topic of DEMONS. That shouldn’t be so surprising, given the fact that I was neck-deep in studying this topic. However, there was one observation that did take me by surprise. I was enjoying a relaxing evening at home, reading a novel (which had nothing to do with demons). In the novel, I came across the word pandemonium. For the first time, I noticed the letters ‘demon’ are smack in the middle of the word. (I suspect you now see it as well!)
I’ll be honest: I had never pondered the word pandemonium before. But now I was curious… are the letters ‘demon’ inside the word merely a coincidence, or is there a connection? Being a word nerd, I couldn’t help but put down my novel to do a bit of research. I was not disappointed. It turns out that the word ‘demon’ in ‘pandemonium’ is not a coincidence at all. It is a word that first appeared in the poem, Paradise Lost, written by 17th-century poet John Milton. Milton combined two Greek words:
- “pan” – meaning “all”
- “daimon”(ium) – meaning “demons” (place of)
The word pandemonium in essence means “the place of all demons”, which Milton used in his poem to represent hell.
I don’t know about you, but responses to recent news and events seems to border on pandemonium. However, as Christians, we can take comfort in knowing that even in uncertain times, God is still in control. As we seek to be lights in a dark world, let us be wise and careful in the days ahead, responding not in fear, but in faith. Many around us are looking for hope in the midst of their fears (and the enemy loves to prey on fear, chaos, and despair). Let us honor the One whose Name we bear, the One who loves us more than life itself. Our God is a God of order, not chaos; He is a God of hope, not despair. May we represent Him well.
“The Lord is my light and my salvation – whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life – of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1 ESV)
LEGION is an action packed six-week Bible study based on the man known only by the name of the demons that tormented him. Pick up your copy today!
“Legion is truly one of the best bible studies I have ever done. It’s meaty, thought provoking, and inspiring. Shadia does a great job weaving scripture together and pointing out details that I never noticed before.” – Amazon review
Shadia is a passionate Bible teacher, author and speaker who has a heart for seeing lives transformed by the power of God’s Word. She holds a master’s in biblical and theological studies from Western Seminary and is author of several books and Bible studies.