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Reading in Mark 5:1-20 ...

6 Catching sight of Jesus from a distance, he ran up and prostrated himself before him, 7 crying out in a loud voice, "What have you to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I adjure you by God, do not torment me!" 8 (He had been saying to him, "Unclean spirit, come out of the man!") 9 He asked him, "What is your name?" He replied, "Legion is my name. There are many of us." 10 And he pleaded earnestly with him not to drive them away from that territory. 11 Now a large herd of swine was feeding there on the hillside. 12 And they pleaded with him, "Send us into the swine. Let us enter them." 13 And he let them, and the unclean spirits came out and entered the swine. The herd of about two thousand rushed down a steep bank into the sea, where they were drowned.

The question that comes to mind for me is about the demons who possessed the man. They didn’t defy Jesus, they instead begged him not to be sent away. What is the relationship between these demons and Jesus, and why did Jesus oblige them and sent them into the pigs?

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Mark 5:1-14 KJV 1 And they came over unto the other side of the sea, into the country of the Gadarenes. 2 And when he was come out of the ship, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit, 3 Who had his dwelling among the tombs; and no man could bind him, no, not with chains: 4 Because that he had been often bound with fetters and chains, and the chains had been plucked asunder by him, and the fetters broken in pieces: neither could any man tame him. 5 And always, night and day, he was in the mountains, and in the tombs, crying, and cutting himself with stones. 6 But when he saw Jesus afar off, he ran and worshipped him, 7 And cried with a loud voice, and said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of the most high God? I adjure thee by God, that thou torment me not. 8 For he said unto him, Come out of the man, thou unclean spirit. 9 And he asked him, What is thy name? And he answered, saying, My name is Legion: for we are many. 10 And he besought him much that he would not send them away out of the country. 11 Now there was there nigh unto the mountains a great herd of swine feeding. 12 And all the devils besought him, saying, Send us into the swine, that we may enter into them. 13 And forthwith Jesus gave them leave. And the unclean spirits went out, and entered into the swine: and the herd ran violently down a steep place into the sea, (they were about two thousand;) and were choked in the sea. 14 And they that fed the swine fled, and told it in the city, and in the country. And they went out to see what it was that was done.

Luke 8:26-39 KJV 26 And they arrived at the country of the Gadarenes, which is over against Galilee. 27 And when he went forth to land, there met him out of the city a certain man, which had devils long time, and ware no clothes, neither abode in any house, but in the tombs. 28 When he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, and with a loud voice said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God most high? I beseech thee, torment me not. 29 (For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For oftentimes it had caught him: and he was kept bound with chains and in fetters; and he brake the bands, and was driven of the devil into the wilderness.) 30 And Jesus asked him, saying, What is thy name? And he said, Legion: because many devils were entered into him. 31 And they besought him that he would not command them to go out into the deep. 32 And there was there an herd of many swine feeding on the mountain: and they besought him that he would suffer them to enter into them. And he suffered them. 33 Then went the devils out of the man, and entered into the swine: and the herd ran violently down a steep place into the lake, and were choked. 34 When they that fed them saw what was done, they fled, and went and told it in the city and in the country. 35 Then they went out to see what was done; and came to Jesus, and found the man, out of whom the devils were departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed, and in his right mind: and they were afraid. 36 They also which saw it told them by what means he that was possessed of the devils was healed. 37 Then the whole multitude of the country of the Gadarenes round about besought him to depart from them; for they were taken with great fear: and he went up into the ship, and returned back again. 38 Now the man out of whom the devils were departed besought him that he might be with him: but Jesus sent him away, saying, 39 Return to thine own house, and shew how great things God hath done unto thee. And he went his way, and published throughout the whole city how great things Jesus had done unto him.

Heb 1:4-5 KJV 4 Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they. 5 For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?

Jesus Christ is above the angels and devils were once angels who turned against God.

The devils knew Jesus Christ and His power over them. Mark 5:7.

The countrymen chased Jesus Christ away. Seeing that there is a LEGION of devils in there, the place must be swarming with evildoers.

Mat 12:43-45 ISV 43 “Whenever an unclean spirit goes out of a person, it wanders through waterless places looking for a place to rest, but finds none. 44 Then it says, ‘I will go back to my home that I left.’ When it arrives, it finds it empty, swept clean, and put in order. 45 Then it goes and brings with it seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they go in and settle there. And so the final condition of that person becomes worse than the first. That’s just what will happen to this evil generation!”

The evil spirits need a resting place. They go out of a clean (baptised) person and sought an unclean one where their evil desires will be fulfilled.

Jude 1:6 KJV And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.

There is a RESERVED JUDGEMENT for the devils. This is the reason why Jesus Christ did not send them into the pit. Luke 8:31. The TIME was not yet right so He left them to their devices. In God's time.

Revelations 22:11 ISV Let the one who does what is evil continue to do what is evil. Let the filthy person continue to be filthy. Let the righteous person continue to do what is right. And let the holy person continue to be holy.”

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Sarah Ermino is a new contributor to this site. Take care in asking for clarification, commenting, and answering. Check out our Code of Conduct.
  • @curiousdanii Thanks. I didn't know the format though so i posted it like that. 😁😁 – Sarah Ermino Jul 14 at 13:28
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Famed 4th century preacher John Chrysostom gives the best answer, in my view. He says the story illustrates the full malice of the demons and also the restraint that God placed on them to keep them from destroying the possessed man in the same way as they did the pigs.

After reading the story of the demoniac and the swine, he says:

Thus do Demons govern; and yet to them the swine were of no particular account, but with you there is ever a warfare without a truce, and an implacable fight, and undying hatred. And if in the case of those with whom they had nothing in common they did not even endure that they should be allowed a brief breathing space of time: if they had gotten unto their power us their enemies who are perpetually stinging them what would they not have done? And what incurable mischief would they not have accomplished? For for this reason God let them fall upon the herd of swine, in order that in the case of the bodies of irrational animals you may learn their wickedness, and that they would have done to the possessed the things which they did to the swine, had not the demoniacs in their very madness experienced the providence of God, is evident to all: and now therefore when you see a man excited by a Demon, worship the Master. Learn the wickedness of the Demons. For it is possible to see both things in the case of these Demons, the lovingkindness of God, and the evil of the Demons. The evil of the Demons when they harass and disturb the soul of the demented: and the lovingkindness of God whenever he restrains and hinders so savage a Demon, who has taken up his abode within, and desires to hurl the man headlong, and does not allow him to use his own power to the full, but suffers him to exhibit just so much strength, as both to bring the man to his senses, and make his own wickedness apparent.

Three Homilies on the Devil by John Chrysostom

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Casey Perkins is a new contributor to this site. Take care in asking for clarification, commenting, and answering. Check out our Code of Conduct.
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First of all the demons knew who Jesus was.

The earliest account is from the Gospel of Mark (Mark 5:1-20), in which Jesus goes across the sea into the "region of the Gerasenes".[4] There, a man "possessed by a demon" comes from the caves to meet him. People had tried to tie him down but he was too strong to be bound, even with chains for he would always break out of them; night and day among the tombs and in the hills he would cry out and cut himself with stones. Jesus approaches and calls the demon to come out of the man, who replies "What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you in the name of God never to torment me!" Jesus asks the demon for his name and is told "My name is Legion, for we are many". The demons beg Jesus not to send them away, but instead to send them into the pigs on a nearby hillside, which he does. The herd, about two thousand in number, rush down the steep bank into the sea and are drowned. The man is now seen, dressed and restored to sanity: he asks to be included among the disciples who travel with Jesus but he is refused and instructed to remain in the Decapolis region, to tell of "the great things the Lord has done ... and [how he] has had compassion on you". Theologian Tom Wright calls him "the first apostle to the gentiles". - Exorcism of the Gerasene demoniac

Some have interpreted this passage to explain that animals have less rights than man.

Animal rights

Classical theological commentary cited this story to argue that animals have no moral importance in Christianity. Saint Augustine of Hippo concluded from the story that Christians have no duties towards animals, writing:

Christ himself shows that to refrain from the killing of animals and the destroying of plants is the height of superstition, for judging that there are no common rights between us and the beasts and trees, he sent the devils into a herd of swine and with a curse withered the tree on which he found no fruit.

Similarly, Thomas Aquinas argued that Jesus allowed the demons to destroy the pigs in order to make the point that his purpose was primarily for the good of men's souls, not their bodies or property (including their animals). This interpretation has been shared by a long line of commentators up to the present day, including I. Howard Marshall and Mark Driscoll. However, other commentators have attempted to make the story consistent with a Jesus who shows "care and concern for animals," as John Austin Baker wrote. Such alternative readings include arguments that the swine were meant to represent the Roman army or "unclean and unfaithful" people; that pigs were considered "unclean", so destroying them might be consistent with care for other animals; and that Jesus did not actually "send" the devils into the pigs. He merely allowed the demons to go where they themselves chose to go. - Exorcism of the Gerasene demoniac

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