September 28, 2015
(All scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated.)
Our scripture is from Luke 8:26 through 39, about the Gadarene demonic who had a legion of demons in him. But it is too long to reproduce in its entirety, so I will condense it:
And they arrived at the country of the Gadarenes….And… there met him…
a certain man, which had demons a long time…wore no clothes, [but lived]
…in the tombs….When he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him,
and…said, “What have I to do with You, Jesus, Son of the Most High God?
I beg you, do not torment me!” For he had commanded the unclean spirit
to come out of the man. For it had often seized him, and he was kept under
guard, bound with chains and shackles; and he broke the bonds, and was
driven by the demons into the wilderness. Jesus asked him…“What is your
name?” And he said, “Legion,” because many demons had entered him.
And they begged Him that He would permit them to enter into…a herd of
many swine…feeding there on the mountain….Then the demons went out
of the man, and entered the swine, and the herd ran violently down the steep
place into the lake and drowned….Those who fed them…fled and told…what
had happened. [Those who heard] went out to see…and found the man from
whom the demons had departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in
his right mind. And they…asked…[Jesus] to depart from them, for they were
seized with great fear….Now the man from whom the demons had departed
begged Him that he might be with Him. But Jesus sent him away, saying,
“Return to your own house, and tell what great things God has done for
you.” And he went his way and proclaimed throughout the whole city what
great things Jesus had done for him.
Why do I call this Gadarene demonic A Pig-Man? It is because apparently the first choice of the demons for habitation was a human being. The second choice was a herd of pigs! In this incident, the man is associated with pigs – since they were nearby to his living quarters, a grave yard! Although it does not say, he was probably a Jew, and Jews would not have made their home in a grave yard next to a herd of pigs! According to Deuteronomy 14:8, “…the swine is unclean for you, because it has cloven hooves, yet does not chew the cud; you shall not eat their flesh nor touch their dead carcasses.” But this man, demonically insane, was driven to occupy a graveyard with pigs nearby, run naked, “…and cut…himself with stones.” (Mark 5:5). (See also Numbers 19:16; Deuteronomy 14:1; Isaiah 65:2-5).
How many demons resided within this man? When Jesus asked the demon its name, “…he said ‘Legion,’ because many demons had entered him.” (Luke 8:30). A Roman legion at full strength in Jesus’ day was six thousand men! Did this man have six thousand demons in him? While we don’t know the exact number, apparently he had a lot – enough to inhabit two thousand pigs! (See Mark 5:13). How did he acquire so many demons? It does not say. But Jesus gave a warning in Luke 11:24 through 26:
When the unclean spirit goes out of a man, he goes through dry places,
seeking rest; and finding none, he says, “I will return to my house from
which I came.” And when he comes, he finds it swept and put in order.
Then he goes and takes with him seven other spirits more wicked than
himself, and they enter and dwell there. And the last state of that man is
worse than the first.
One application of this teaching is that you had better fill your life with the Holy Spirit after being delivered from demon possession, or you may be in big trouble! Maybe this Gadarene demonic had this occur several times to have so many demons inhabiting him. Or maybe he had made access to a demon with a lot of hellish acquaintances! But upon Jesus’ command, the demons left – all of them! They went into the pigs, the pigs went crazy, and drowned themselves! Apparently, demons can drive both humans and pigs nuts!
We see three reactions to this incident from the people involved:
• The pig keepers fled! They may not have been the owners of the pigs, because they are identified just as those who fed them. But apparently they were shaken enough by the interaction they overheard between Jesus and the insane man, and the loss of the pigs, that they just wanted to get away from the scene! It says in Luke 8:34 (part of what I left out above), “…they fled and told it in the city and in the country.”
• Those who heard the report of the pig keepers, “…went out to see what had happened …and found the man from whom the demons had departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed, and in his right mind. And they were afraid.” (Luke 8:35). After hearing again how the healing happened, it says in Luke 8:37, “…the whole multitude…asked [Jesus]… to depart…for they were in great fear.”
• The one we call the Pig-Man, “…begged [Jesus]…that he might go with Him.” He knew his past demon-possessed condition, he knew the power of God through Jesus had healed him, he knew he was in the presence of the God’s Anointed – and he wanted to go with Him! “But Jesus sent him away, saying, ‘Return to your own house, and tell what great things God has done for you.’ ” (Luke 8:38 and 39). And that’s just what he did! “…he went his way and proclaimed throughout the whole city what great things Jesus had done for him.” (Luke 8:39).
What more can I say? Be A Pig-Man! “…proclaim…what great things Jesus has done for…” YOU!