Thank you, Father, that you are always at work. Empower me to be an instrument for bringing you praise today.
Read LUKE 8:26-39
Jesus Restores a Demon-Possessed Man
26 They sailed to the region of the Gerasenes,[a] which is across the lake from Galilee. 27 When Jesus stepped ashore, he was met by a demon-possessed man from the town. For a long time this man had not worn clothes or lived in a house, but had lived in the tombs. 28 When he saw Jesus, he cried out and fell at his feet, shouting at the top of his voice, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, don’t torture me!” 29 For Jesus had commanded the impure spirit to come out of the man. Many times it had seized him, and though he was chained hand and foot and kept under guard, he had broken his chains and had been driven by the demon into solitary places.
30 Jesus asked him, “What is your name?”
“Legion,” he replied, because many demons had gone into him. 31 And they begged Jesus repeatedly not to order them to go into the Abyss.
32 A large herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside. The demons begged Jesus to let them go into the pigs, and he gave them permission. 33 When the demons came out of the man, they went into the pigs, and the herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and was drowned.
34 When those tending the pigs saw what had happened, they ran off and reported this in the town and countryside, 35 and the people went out to see what had happened. When they came to Jesus, they found the man from whom the demons had gone out, sitting at Jesus’ feet, dressed and in his right mind; and they were afraid. 36 Those who had seen it told the people how the demon-possessed man had been cured. 37 Then all the people of the region of the Gerasenes asked Jesus to leave them, because they were overcome with fear. So he got into the boat and left.
38 The man from whom the demons had gone out begged to go with him, but Jesus sent him away, saying, 39 “Return home and tell how much God has done for you.” So the man went away and told all over town how much Jesus had done for him.
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Thank the Lord for his holistic sozo healing1 – saving, delivering, making us whole, restoring, and healing us: physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
This memorable story takes place in the region of the Gerasenes, a gentile area where pigs are raised. Luke’s focus is on the transformation of a man possessed by a ‘legion’ (see v 30) of demons. For a long time, this man has not worn clothes or lived indoors but has lived in the tombs. His affliction is so violent he has been chained hand and foot and even kept under guard, but he has broken his chains and been driven ‘into solitary [uninhabited] places’ (v 29). This refers to the social isolation that he is suffering as a result of the demonic influences in his life.
These demons recognize Jesus’ authority and, after much pleading, Jesus allows them to enter a herd of pigs. The contrast in the man’s condition is extreme – now he is sitting peacefully at Jesus’ feet, dressed and in his right mind, totally cured/healed/saved (v 35). The dramatic change frightens all the people of the region, who ask Jesus to leave immediately. Although the man wants to follow Jesus, he is directed to make the miracle known in his own native territory, so he spreads the news of how much Jesus has done for him all over the town. Unlike in more Jewish areas, where Jesus often asks people to remain quiet to prevent any interference in his ministry, this man is directly encouraged to share his testimony broadly.
When Jesus touches our life, the transformation is extreme. It may not always be quite this dramatic, but the implications touch every area. Just as the man who was once consigned to lonely places like deserted tombs is now directly involved in the social fabric of his town, so Jesus’ healing restores not just our bodies, but our minds, souls, and even relationships.
How has Jesus transformed your life? Perhaps by freeing you from addiction, or healing of emotional pain? Maybe this is still ongoing. To whom can you tell the story today?
Mighty God, thank you for your power that can redeem a life, entire communities, even whole nations. Give me greater vision to experience what you can do.
1 Luke 8:35; and see July 17 notes
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