5.31.21 – Daily Dose of Worship. A study on Matthew. Part 118. Demons.

We leave the scene of the boat and the wind and the waves and we move on this:

“And when He came to the other side into the country of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men confronted Him as they were coming out of the tombs. They were so extremely violent that no one could pass by that way.” – Matthew 8:28

So…what do you do when you see demon-possessed dudes walking out of tombs into your path? Um…run! Not so with Jesus.

Let’s get a little context here before we dive into the meat of this part of the chapter.

Jesus and His disciples have traveled by boat from one side of the Sea of Galilee, probably near Capernaum, to the other side. Specifically, they have arrived in the country of the Gadarenes. Gadara and Gerasa (Mark 5:1) were Gentile cities in the region of the Decapolis, southeast of the Sea of Galilee. Jesus sailed with His disciples across the lake to get away from the crowds (Matthew 8:18).

Leaving the boat, Jesus has come ashore to an area marked by ancient tombs, perhaps in a hillside. Two demon-possessed men come out of the tombs and approach Him. Matthew describes them as so fierce nobody could pass by. Mark (Mark 5:1–20) and Luke (Luke 8:26–39), in their telling of this story, mention only one of the men and describe him as having demon-enabled supernatural strength so that he could not be bound without breaking free. He was said to be naked and living among the tombs away from all other people. Graveyards were understood to be unclean places by the Israelites.

Demon possession was understood to be a fact of life in and around Israel and in much of the ancient world. Nobody questioned the existence of demons. They had seen too many people afflicted, often violently, when occupied by demons. Demons were known to alter personalities and behaviors, as well as causing those oppressed to behave in self-destructive and violent ways. The lesser occurrences of demon possession today is likely a deliberate strategy by the Devil: disbelief in the spiritual world is a more potent weapon today than it would have been in Jesus’ era.

Kind of incredible that this was a very very commonplace thing to deal with. Demon possession was a fact of life back in those days….

How does that relate to our times? What are we possessed with? Our desires for worldly things, our desires for attention, for affirmation?

Think on that just a bit today.

4 Comments

  1. Margaret K on May 31, 2021 at 2:04 am

    We are to be possessed by God only; by His Spirit that is in us. Anything else that possesses us Jesus has already delivered us from. We need to walk the in the freedom He paid for with His Blood.
    Easier said than done because these things crop up without us realizing it.
    The Bible says that it’s the little foxes that spoil the vine. It’s the little things that creep into our lives that grow to be big things that take up our time and draw us away from God.

  2. Bruce B on May 31, 2021 at 9:08 am

    New International Version
    Then Jesus asked him, “What is your name?” “My name is Legion,” he replied, “for we are many.”

    I always think of this verse when I think of demons. Not because I am possessed by demons, but there are many things in my life that distract me from spending time with Jesus. But thankfully those “demons” become less and less each day as I focus on Jesus and His plan for me!

    • Suzanne Robinson on June 4, 2021 at 5:51 pm

      Amen!!

  3. Peggy F on May 31, 2021 at 12:32 pm

    Jesus traveled, ” to the other side”………. and He was confronted by supernatural beings, talking through the mouth of humans, and they knew who Jesus was ! Jesus is Lord over all …….powers and principalities, all !!! Back in the late eighties , Frank Peretti came out with two novels , ” This Present Darkness” and ” Piercing the Darkness”, giving a glimpse into this supernatural world of powers and principalities, behind, and using human hosts. In praying for others, sometimes these worlds collide, but always know, just as Jesus sent the demons out of the men into pigs, we are covered by the blood of Jesus, and we too, can cast out demons. in His Name.

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