and was continually screaming, and beating himself with stones.
When he saw Jesus from afar, he ran and fell at his feet, and cried with a loud voice,
“What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? For God’s sake, I beg you, do not torment me!”
He said this, because Jesus had commanded, “Evil spirit, come out of the man!” When Jesus asked the evil spirit,
“What is your name?” it replied, “Legion is my name, for we are many.” And it kept beg ging Jesus,
not to send them out of that region.
Now a great herd of pigs was feeding on the hillside, and the evil spirits begged him, “Send us to the pigs,
and let us go into them.” So Jesus let them go. The evil spirits came out of the man and went into the pigs;
and immediately, the herd rushed down the cliff; and all were drowned in the lake. The herdsmen fled,
and reported this in the town and in the countryside. So all the people came to see what had happened.
They came to Jesus, and saw the man freed of the evil spirits, sitting there, clothed and in his right mind;
the same man who had been possessed by the legion. They were afraid. And when those who had seen it,
told what had happened to the man and to the pigs, the people begged Jesus to leave their neighborhood.
When Jesus was getting into the boat, the man, who had been possessed, begged to stay with him.
Jesus would not let him, and said, “Go home to your people, and tell them how much the Lord has done for you,
and how he has had mercy on you.” So he went throughout the country of Decapolis,
telling everyone how much Jesus had done for him; and all the people were astonished.
Our teachers in elementary grades obliged us to memorize these “magic words:” sorry, please, thank you.
These “magic words” are engraved in my memory. As I grew up, however,
I realized that action has to accompany the words.
The man in the gospel freed from the evil spirit expresses his gratitude to Jesus by asking him to stay with him.
Jesus denies his request, but makes him a preacher of the Lord’s mercy. Obedient to Jesus’ command,
the man spread to the neighboring towns how much Jesus has done for him. I realize that I, too,
have “evil spirits” in me, which Jesus alone can drive away, like: pride, attachments to bad habits,
and many more. These evil spirits isolate me from other people of good will.
I pray that the Lord Jesus will drive away the evil spirits inside me.
© Copyright Bible Diary 2020