Mark 5

Mark 5: Casting out Devils

                Jesus and His Apostles go into the country of Gardarenes where Jesus is immediately met by a met on the shore that had an evil spirit. The man was so possessed that he had to be placed in chains in a tomb, but no chains or any form of restraint would keep him locked up. We learn that the man was so tormented by this evil spirit that he cut “…himself with stones.” (Mark 5:5).

Jesus immediately blessed the man and cast the spirit out of him; we learn that the man’s name was ‘Legion’, and that there were many who were possessed.  Jesus casts all the evil spirits out, and allowed the evil spirits to enter into swine nearby. The evil spirits actually pleaded with Jesus to let them enter into the swine, which were 2,000 swine. Jesus knew that the evil spirits would never obtain bodies and therefore permitted them to enter into the swine. However, after being in a human host for so long, they soon realized that a pig’s body was not what they wanted and all of them (all 2,000) jumped off a cliff into the ocean, where they “…choked in the sea.” (Mark 5:13)

                Once the man Legion was free of his evil spirit, he asked to come on board with Jesus and follow him. Jesus however, told him to return to his friends and family and tell them the great this of the Lord. The man Legion followed this advice and returned to where he came, and published the great works of the Lord, and people did marvel.

Jesus returned to the ship and passed over to the other side, where He was met by Jairus, who was one of the rulers of the synagogue, who did ask for a blessing on his daughter. While Jesus was traveling to see the daughter, He was touched on the hem of His garment by an old lady. This lady had suffered a disease of the blood throughout her life and told herself; “…If I many touch but his clothes, I shall be whole.” (Mark 5:28), so she touched the garment of Jesus as He passed by her. Immediately after passing by, the woman felt that she was whole and that her disease was cured. Jesus stopped promptly, because He felt “…that virtue [power or strength] had gone out of him…” (Mark 5:30). The woman was now fearful and dropped at His feet and confessed to touching His garment. Jesus then told her that “…thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague.” (Mark 5:34)

                When Jesus finally arrived at the synagogue to attend to the daughter of Jarius a man from the synagogue yells; “…Thy daughter is dead: why troublest thou the Master…” (Mark 5:35) This man thought that the daughter was dead and nothing could be done. It is interesting that people had heard of the miraculous powers of Jesus or witnessed them first hand, yet people still did not believe that He could bring someone back from the dead? Jesus responds to the man; “…Be not afraid, only believe.” (Mark 5:36)

Jesus then commands Peter, James, and John to follow Him into the house. The people in the house are very skeptical of Jesus, so Jesus asks them; “…Why make ye this ado, and weep? The damsel is not dead, but sleepeth.” (Mark 5:39) But, like most of His critics, He received laughing.

Jesus then sends everyone out, except the parents and His Apostles. He then took the daughter by the hand and said to her; “…Talitha cumi; which is… Damsel, I say unto thee, arise.” (Mark 5:41) The damsel did arise, she being only 12 years old.

Matthew 8

Matthew 8:

Jesus Heals a Leper 

                Jesus ends his Sermon, and begins to come down off the mountain when a leper approaches him and asks him; “…Lord, if thou wilt, canst thou make me clean.” (Matthew 8:2)

Jesus then puts forth his hand and made him clean. Jesus tells the man to depart to a priest and cleanse himself according to the Law of Moses. Jesus then goes to Capernaum and while there is asked to heal a man suffering from Palsy. The man explains that his servant is ill, but that he is not worthy for the Lord to enter into his house to heal the man. Instead, the man asks Jesus to heal him from a distance, and remarkably Jesus agrees, even stating that the man had more faith than most. Jesus tells the man; “…Go thy way; and as thou has believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour.” (Matthew 7:13) One thing that we can learn from this experience, is that we need faith to be healed.

While speaking to the man, Jesus also mentions part of the Plan of Salvation. He speaks of the lowest level, or “hell” as “…outer darkness…” where there shall be “…weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (Matthew 7:12)

                Jesus then continues on to heal and cast out evil spirits. Jesus even healed Peter (the apostle) mother in law. This is very interesting because it proves that Apostles were allowed to marry.

“…Jesus was come into Peter’s house, he saw his wife’s mother laid, and sick of fever.” (Matthew 7:14)

                Jesus, presumably near the docks, is told by a scribe; “…Master, I will follow thee withersoever thou goest… suffer me first to go and bury my father.” (Matthew 7:19,21) We can assume that this scribe had just lost his father, and wished to join Jesus before he left the area. However he asks Jesus to give him enough time to bury his father before following him. Jesus answers him in a very interesting way; “…Follow me; and let the dead bury the dead.” (Matthew 7:22) I don’t believe that Jesus was being insensitive; rather he was expressing how important missionary work is. Jesus essentially told the man that if he wished to follow him, he needed to do it NOW, and not wait.

Jesus then gets on ship with his disciples and sails out into the waters. While in the water, a storm arises and causes the ship to be shaken and covered with waves. The disciples/apostles get nervous and worry that they might perish. During this event, Jesus was fast asleep, so out of desperation and panic the men awake Jesus; “…Lord, save us: we perish.” (Matthew 7:25) Jesus then turns to them and says; “…Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm.” (Matthew 7:26)

                In shock and awe, as if the apostles and disciples had not seen enough miracles of Jesus healing the sick and casting out devils, the men on the ship question what they just saw… “…What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!” (Matthew 7:27)

                Jesus and his disciples arrive on the other side of the country in Gergesenes, where they meet two men possessed of devils. The devils cry out to Jesus and ask Him, if He was there to torment them. Notice how the evil, fears Jesus? The evil spirits knew that Jesus would cast them out of their human host, and in desperation of having a body, the evil spirits ask Jesus to allow them to possess a group of pigs. Jesus allows this and after leaving their human host, they possess a herd of swine. After they were in their new host, the “…whole herd of swine ran violently down a steep place into the sea and perished in the waters.” (Matthew 7:32)

One thing that we can learn from this is that evil spirits EXIST. They are capable of possession, but only if we allow them into our bodies. Jesus had the power to cast them out of their human host and into a pig. The evil spirits are so jealous that they will never receive a human body, that they are desperate enough to possess a pig! Although shortly after entering the pig, and realizing that it is not the same as having a human body, they commit suicide by running over a cliff to their death.

I find this to be a wonderful, short film that helps us to understand the life and ministry of Jesus Christ. It is not a full account. but a short and condensed version for those who wish not to read, or would like something to supplement their reading…