Mark 5; Demon Possession

I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

Have you noticed several demon possession stories already in the book of Mark? Are these stories relevent to us today?

Mark 5:1 And they came over unto the other side of the sea, into the country of the Gadarenes. 

And they came over unto the other side of the sea, into the country of the Gadarenes. 

 5:2   And when he was come out of the ship, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit, 

Here a demon possessed mad has an obsession with death. Is it not the same today? Are not gothic people today obsessed with death?

 5:3   Who had [his] dwelling among the tombs; and no man could bind him, no, not with chains: 

 5:4   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. 

Today there are people in the church (Remember in Mark 1 the demoniac was in the temple) as well as the world who will not be tamed or bound by laws or standards. They want to do as they please without submitting to anyone, yet this is a sign of being controlled by the prince of darkness.

 5:5   And always, night and day, he was in the mountains, and in the tombs, crying, and cutting himself with stones. 

Studies show that people who are cutters, and suicidal have been abused, usually sexually. With this man’s obsession with death and cutting, he may have been abused. I am glad Jesus came to be His Savior!

 5:6   But when he saw Jesus afar off, he ran and worshipped him, 

 5:7   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. 

Here is a tremendous struggle. The man wants to worship Jesus but is tormented by His presence. Again, it is not Jesus who can’t dwell with sinners, but sinners who don’t want to dwell with God. This man is demon possessed, and so one sign of demon possession is not wanting to be in the presence of God weather it is in the church service, prayer meeting, or family worship.

 5:8   For he said unto him, Come out of the man, [thou] unclean spirit. 

 5:9   And he asked him, What [is] thy name? And he answered, saying, My name [is] Legion: for we are many. 

Jesus did not need to know His name, but asked, so that the disciples could see what they were up against. On our own we are no match for Satan.

 5:10 And he besought him much that he would not send them away out of the country

 5:11 Now there was there nigh unto the mountains a great herd of swine feeding. 

 5:12 And all the devils besought him, saying, Send us into the swine, that we may enter into them. 

 5:13 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. 

 5:14 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. 

 5:15 And they come to Jesus, and see him that was possessed with the devil, and had the legion, sitting, and clothed, and in his right mind: and they were afraid. 

Notice being in your right mind and properly clothed go together. Luke tells us this man was naked. The further we are from God the more clothes we are willing to take off. The closer we come to God the more appropriately we dress. For more on this please click here.

 5:16 And they that saw [it] told them how it befell to him that was possessed with the devil, and [also] concerning the swine. 

 5:17 And they began to pray him to depart out of their coasts. 

Hhhmm….They want Jesus to go away. I wonder where those demons went after the pigs drowned. Here is a clue when people are asking Jesus to leave!

 5:18 And when he was come into the ship, he that had been possessed with the devil prayed him that he might be with him. 

A sign of demon possession is wanting Jesus to go away. A sign of conversion is wanting to be in His presence.

 5:19 Howbeit Jesus suffered him not, but saith unto him, Go home to thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee, and hath had compassion on thee.

Mark 1; Sin and Seperation

I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

Mark does not spend any time on Jesus’ birth of childhood and goes straight to Jesus’ ministry. Makes me wonder if Mark just didn’t like kids or something.

And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out,Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God. And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him. And when the unclean spirit had torn him, and cried with a loud voice, he came out of him. And they were all amazed, insomuch that they questioned among themselves, saying, What thing is this? what new doctrine is this? for with authority commandeth he even the unclean spirits, and they do obey him. Mark 1:23-27

Isaiah 59:1 says that our sins separate us from God. God does not separate Himself from sinners. Sinners separate themselves from God. God can dwell with sin, but sin can not dwell with God. God did not run from Adam when Adam sinned. Adam ran from God. In this story we see the demoniac telling Jesus to leave Him alone. Jesus does not tell the demoniac to leave Him alone. God loves sinners, but sinners hate God. This is why God sent His Son to die for them and thus win their love back to Him.

In his sinless state, man held joyful communion with Him “in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” Colossians 2:3. But after his sin, he could no longer find joy in holiness, and he sought to hide from the presence of God. Such is still the condition of the unrenewed heart. It is not in harmony with God, and finds no joy in communion with Him. 

 The sinner could not be happy in God’s presence; he would shrink from the companionship of holy beings. Could he be permitted to enter heaven, it would have no joy for him. The spirit of unselfish love that reigns there—every heart responding to the heart of Infinite Love—would touch no answering chord in his soul. His thoughts, his interests, his motives, would be alien to those that actuate the sinless dwellers there. He would be a discordant note in the melody of heaven. Heaven would be to him a place of torture; he would long to be hidden from Him who is its light, and the center of its joy.  It is no arbitrary decree on the part of God that excludes the wicked from heaven; they are shut out by their own unfitness for its companionship. The glory of God would be to them a consuming fire. They would welcome destruction, that they might be hidden from the face of Him who died to redeem them.—Steps to Christ, p 17.

But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death.  Proverbs 8:36