Then they sailed to the region of the Gerasenes, which is opposite Galilee. When he got out on land, a demon-possessed man from the town met him. For a long time he had worn no clothes and did not stay in a house but in the tombs. When he saw Jesus, he cried out, fell down before him, and said in a loud voice, “What do you have to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, don’t torment me!” For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. Many times it had seized him, and though he was guarded, bound by chains and shackles, he would snap the restraints and be driven by the demon into deserted places.
“What is your name?” Jesus asked him.
“Legion,” he said, because many demons had entered him (8:26-30 CSB).
Even believers need to be reminded of the power of the Lord Jesus Christ. Daily we see sin controlling and ruining the world around us. The consequences of human sin from the curse currently are wrecking the world. We see the lives of people being destroyed by the evil one. Christians know ourselves to be in conflict with Satan, the world, and the habit patterns of remaining sin. Yes, believers need to be reminded of the power of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The best medicine for a discouraged spirit is a fresh acquaintance with Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. Let us pray that the Holy Spirit would show us anew the power of the Lord Jesus Christ.
We see the power of the Lord Jesus in the healing and deliverance of this Gerasene man.
Look at the power of sin over this Gerasene man (8:26-30)
He was demon-possessed. This passage is valuable because it plainly reveals what happens when a person falls under the full sway of the devil. The destroyer’s true intent is unmasked. And we will see what a glorious difference Christ’s control makes! Here we see fullness of demonic control. This man was possessed by a “legion” of demons. (A Roman legion was 6,000 men.) Regardless of the number afflicting him, there was a large force of evil in this man. Observe that it was possible for more than one demon to possess a person (cf. Luke 8:2; 11:26).
Consider the results of demon-possession.
- His clothing: He wore none. He was naked (8:27). His conscience was seared and he felt no shame. Sinful people think public nudity is a sign of liberation. In fact, it is a badge of bondage to sin.
- His home: He lived in the cemetery (8:27). Remember that this wasn’t a modern American cemetery complete with all our sanitary regulations.
- His behavior: He was wild and uncontrollable (8:28-29). The man was dangerous to others. That is why he was chained and guarded to some degree. He was dangerous to himself (Mk 5:5). He had anti-social behavior. He yelled loudly and drew away from normal human society.
This man was in desperate need. Humankind had no hope for him. This is still the case today. Our only “solution” is to commit such a person to a mental institution and sedate with drugs. Whatever we might think about demonic possession in this present age, let us remember that everyone outside of Christ is a slave to Satan and willingly yields to Satan’s foul leadership (Eph 2:1-3; 2 Tm 2:25-26). You who are outside of Christ, what will you do on the day that the evil one ravages your soul? Run to Christ for rescue now!
We currently face a global pandemic. It can seem out of control. Fear and hopelessness are growing. Yet people continue in their evil ways, not wanting to repent. It makes me think of what John wrote in the Revelation:
The rest of mankind who were not killed by these plagues still did not repent of the work of their hands; they did not stop worshiping demons, and idols of gold, silver, bronze, stone and wood—idols that cannot see or hear or walk. Nor did they repent of their murders, their magic arts, their sexual immorality or their thefts (Revelation 9:20-21 NIV).
It is time to repent and to seek the Lord while he may be found (read Isaiah 55:6-7).
Grace and peace,