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The Legion of Demons

March 29, 2015

Jesus was known for traveling throughout the country, healing, teaching, and performing miracles. I always have loved to read the stories and wished I could have been there.
Mark 5:1-20 tells of a man possessed of many demons. This man was called Legion because of the many demons inside him. Back then, a legion was the largest unit of the Roman army–3,000-6,000 men.

Jesus sailed to the country of the Gadarenes, and as soon as he disembarked a man came out of the tombs with an unclean spirit. He was living among the graves because no man could bind him. He was able to break free of the strongest chains. He was wild and untamable, spending his days and nights wandering throughout the mountains and tombs, crying and cutting himself with stones. This made me think he wanted to be normal and truly was trying to get rid of the demons by cutting them out.

Yet when he saw Jesus, even though he was far away, the possessed man recognized who he was. (The devil is very much aware of God, and fears Him.) The possessed man cried out to Jesus, “What do you want we me, Jesus, thou Son of the most high God? I beg you by God not to torment me.”

Verses 8 and 9 seem transposed. When God gives a command it is instantly obeyed. Yet it reads like Jesus commanded the demons to come out, then they chatted a moment before going heading into the pigs. Then I thought that maybe because Jesus used the singular only one demon came out, leaving the other thousands behind. So Jesus asked his name. I’m certain Jesus knew how many were there and what the lead demon’s request would be, but this might have been a test for Satan.

The devils begged not to be sent out of the country and requested to be placed in the large herd of swine feeding nearby. Jesus gave them leave. The devils went into the swine and raced down the hill into the sea. There were around 2,000 pigs. Even at one demon per pig, that was a lot of demons in the man! My Bible has notes at the bottom of the page that help to clarify some points. Here it explains that the demons wanted to go into the pigs probably to avoid being sent into the abyss, which is their ultimate doom.

The herders took off and went into the city. They told told everyone and a group went back with them to see for themselves. The possessed man was sitting peaceably, clothed and in his right mind. Instead of being happy, they became afraid and demanded that Jesus leave. Most likely, they were not too happy to have had their herd destroyed. Jesus opted to go. The healed man asked to join him, but Jesus gave him another job. He told him to go home, to his family and friends and tell them what happened–how Jesus had compassion and healed him.

We all have a small niche that can only be filled by God’s presence. You may try to fill the void with wealth, alcohol, sports, sex, wisdom, or whatever, but nothing can fill that yearning except God. Once He’s in your heart you feel complete.

Proverbs 30:5
Have a blessed day!

From → Short Stories

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