Date: Friday, May 16
Scripture: Mark 5:1-20
Verse: He said this because Jesus had already commanded him, “Unclean spirit, come out of the man!” (Mark 5:8)
Today’s passage may sound odd to our 21st century ears, but we know people who battle demons all the time. We talk about the demons of alcoholism and addiction, but many of us are also battling anxiety, depression, an event from our past we are running from, a bad self-image, and more. Some of us may feel as though we are battling a legion of demons, like this poor man living among the tombs in the region of the Gerasenes. We know the demons can be strong, breaking free from whatever chains we use to hold them down, and can cause us to do great harm to ourselves. Many, like the man in this story, have been left alone to battle them alone, among the tombs.
Jesus goes toward this man everyone else avoids. He orders the demons to leave the man. They go into some pigs (an “unclean” animal) causing them to rush down the cliff and into the sea (returning the demons to the place of chaos). The man is then completely changed. The whole thing is so awe-inspiring, the people don’t know what to do with it and ask Jesus to leave — an interesting response for another devotion.
No matter your demons, Jesus has the ability to cast them out. Even if you believe they are of your own making, or you might think, your own fault, Jesus wants to remove them from you, and he can. It isn’t always easy, and the battle is sometimes long, but you can be freed from your demons.
Prayer: God, send the demons I battle far from me. Amen.
Action: Pray for God to cast your demons far from you. Or, if you are one who has been healed, explore ways you can use your experience to be an agent of Jesus helping others battle their demons.
Respond: The man in our story was completely changed by his encounter with Jesus. How is your life different because you have met Jesus?
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