Day 26 (Tues, Sept 2, 2014)

Trip to Gadara

61 total verses: Matthew 8:18,23-34; 9:1; Mark 4:35-41; 5:1-21; Luke 8:22-40

Brief description of action taking place or point being made

76. Orders to cross the Sea of Galilee in Matthew 8:18; Mark 4:35; Luke 8:22
77. Jesus calms a stormy sea in Matthew 8:23-27; Mark 4:36-41; Luke 8:23-25
78. Legion cast out of violent man in Matthew 8:28-34; Mark 5:1-20; Luke 8:26-39
79. Jesus sails to Capernaum in Matthew 9:01; Mark 5:21; Luke 8:40

General questions

1. What is your favorite verse or set of verses? Why?
2. Did you learn anything from the reading or find anything particularly cool? What?
3. Was there anything unclear in the passage that you have questions about? What are they?

Specific questions on this passage

After Completing the Bible Reading

Broader outline of each section of passage

Matthew 8:18; Mark 4:35; Luke 8:22. After a busy day of teaching and ministering, Jesus told his disciples that they would sail to the other side of the lake.

Matthew 8:23-27; Mark 4:36-41; Luke 8:23-25. After getting into the boat, Jesus fell asleep, because he was so tired. But a big windstorm came down upon them, and the disciples feared for their lives, and they woke Jesus. When Jesus awoke, he rebuked the wind and the waves, and perfect calm came over the sea.

Matthew 8:28-34; Mark 5:1-20; Luke 8:26-39. When they arrived at the other side of the lake, they were in the country of the Gerasenes. A demon-possessed man, naked and not in his right mind met them. And Jesus began commanding the demons to come out of him. The demons were called Legion, and they asked permission to go into a herd of pigs. And so the two thousand demons went into the pigs, and the pigs immediately drowned themselves in the sea. This freaked out the herdsman, who ran to the town and told people what happened, and they all came out to see. They were all afraid, and asked Jesus to leave.

The demon-possessed man was now clothed and in his right mind, and he asked Jesus if he could go with him. But Jesus told him to go home and tell people how much the Lord had done for him. And so he did what the Lord said to do, and people marveled at his story.

In the story from Matthew (which is also the shortest of the three accounts), there are 2 demon-possessed men, but in Mark and Luke, only one. Perhaps one of them was in worse shape than the other, and the story in Mark and Luke focuses on that one.

Matthew 9:1; Mark 5:21; Luke 8:40. After sailing back across the sea to Capernaum, the crowds came out to welcome Jesus.

My favorite passage and other random thoughts

I chose as my favorite passage Mark 5:18-20, “The man who had been possessed with demons begged him that he might be with him. And he did not permit him but said to him, ‘Go home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.’ And he went away and began to proclaim in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him, and everyone marveled.” (ESV). Surprisingly, not all who get great things from Jesus seem thankful, but this man who had been set free from two thousand demons and restored to his right mind was definitely thankful. And I like that he was not only thankful, but wanted to go with Jesus, perhaps to serve Jesus as an expression of gratitude, or perhaps to learn more from Jesus, or perhaps simply to stay in relationship with Jesus. Jesus would not let him. It’s not clear why. It could be that Jesus knew that the perfect thing for the man to do was to share about how God set him free with his own people. It might have also been that it would have been problematic having a Gentile in his entourage, given Jesus’ primary mission was to share the Good News with Jewish people.

In any case, what I really like is that the man did not act disappointed from being rejected, or refuse to do what Jesus asked him to do, or even that he did it half-heartedly. Rather, he not only went to his own family, but to the whole city. And by saying that he told “how much” Jesus did, we have to assume that it was a full proclamation of how captive he had been, and now how free he was, as well as perhaps as many of the characteristics of Jesus that he was able to discern in such a short period of time. I like that it says in verse 20 that “everyone marveled”. Perhaps as a result of this testimony, the next time Jesus came to the area, the people were very receptive and wonderful things took place.

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