Mark 5:1-20 (NIV)
Jesus Restores a Demon-Possessed Man
5 They went across the lake to the region of the Gerasenes. 2 When Jesus got out of the boat, a man with an impure spirit came from the tombs to meet him. 3 This man lived in the tombs, and no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain. 4 For he had often been chained hand and foot, but he tore the chains apart and broke the irons on his feet. No one was strong enough to subdue him. 5 Night and day among the tombs and in the hills he would cry out and cut himself with stones. 6 When he saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and fell on his knees in front of him. 7 He shouted at the top of his voice, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? In God’s name don’t torture me!” 8 For Jesus had said to him, “Come out of this man, you impure spirit!” 9 Then Jesus asked him, “What is your name?” “My name is Legion,” he replied, “for we are many.” 10 And he begged Jesus again and again not to send them out of the area. 11 A large herd of pigs was feeding on the nearby hillside. 12 The demons begged Jesus, “Send us among the pigs; allow us to go into them.” 13 He gave them permission, and the impure spirits came out and went into the pigs. The herd, about two thousand in number, rushed down the steep bank into the lake and were drowned. 14 Those tending the pigs ran off and reported this in the town and countryside, and the people went out to see what had happened. 15 When they came to Jesus, they saw the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons, sitting there, dressed and in his right mind; and they were afraid. 16 Those who had seen it told the people what had happened to the demon-possessed man—and told about the pigs as well. 17 Then the people began to plead with Jesus to leave their region. 18 As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been demon-possessed begged to go with him. 19 Jesus did not let him, but said, “Go home to your own people and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.” 20 So the man went away and began to tell in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him. And all the people were amazed.
Have you ever felt torn by conflicting voices and feelings?
If there has ever been a time of conflicting voices in this world, it is right now. Many demons possessed this one man. Today many demons continue to possess many people. It is like the voice of the devil is amplified. The devil and his demons have not changed their mode of operation since the beginning. They plant doubt in Your authority. They elevate selfishness and pride. They crave significance and do it by getting attention, usually negative to create fear. Fear is of the devil. I am torn by the conflicting voices in society today. I want to love my neighbor, and I am willing to sacrifice time, money, and my comfort to care for the needs of others. But when I recognize that my sacrifice is to feed a sense of significance and power for others and it is not a real need, This, in turn, makes me more distrusting and I tend to refrain from helping anyone. Forgive me for letting the wrong voices influence me. Lord, give me Your discernment as I make decisions today. Help me to follow Your voice to guide my life to not conform to the world but to walk in Your principles of truth. Let me stand firm in my own convictions and not bow down to those who scream loud for attention. The way You conquered the demons in this man was to speak Your truth to them. You didn’t run and hide or accept the situation, but You spoke in authority, had mercy on him, and healed him with Your power. Lord, I pray that You give this world a dose of Your merciful power today. No human can bind the evil that has run rampant, it requires Your mighty healing hand to save us. Send the demons out and allow all people to converse in their right mind together. Let us respect differences of opinion by listening to each other. Fill Your people with your Holy Spirit and set us on fire for You. Replace the evil spirit of fear with Your Spirit of trust, love, generosity, and forgiveness. Give us the opportunity to share Your gospel truth with the world and spread Your message of forgiveness and love. You are a Holy, Mighty, Powerful, and Eternal God and I trust in You. Amen