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February 24: Demons

Today, Taryn Flake, shares another devotional with is. How would you articulate demons or evil? This becomes a secondary question once we make it to the point that Taryn begins to share... Do we truly believe in the power of redemption through God?



Scripture: Mark 5:1-20


Demons

What an interesting passage this is. We don’t often talk about demons in church. In some ways, I’d like to pretend that they don’t exist and that people in Bible times simply used the term “demons” to explain away things that can be defined now as mental illnesses. But if they don’t exist, then why does this passage exist? As much as I’d like to explain this entire passage and idea away with some rational, medical justification, I think I have to come to terms with the fact that demons are in fact real and still exist today.


A man possessed by a legion of demons is so strong that he is incapable of being tied up and so he lives among the dead, in the tombs. Picture someone camping out in a cemetery full-time. Why does Legion beg to be sent into a herd of pigs only to turn around and drown? One thought is that the demons were being successful in that area and that’s why they requested to stay in the area. Another thought is that Jesus banished them back to the underworld by sending them into the herd of pigs, which is where they came from and this destroys them. Why does the owner of the pigs never call Jesus out on the miracle and ask him to reimburse him for the loss of 2,000 pigs? One theory is that this person was a Jew who was illegally (according to Jewish law) raising pigs.


The biggest point of the passage is the demon-possessed man’s transition. The demon-possessed man is shown towards the end of the story, sitting in his right mind and dressed. Do you trust someone who does a 180º in their life? The people who see him in his right mind are afraid. I think most of the time, we assume that someone who makes a major life change will just relapse into the life they knew before. But that is the power of Jesus Christ. He changes us into an unrecognizable version of ourselves that can be lasting. Jesus tells the man that instead of following him, he needs to serve as a witness to those who know him as to how Jesus changed his life. This shows the power of sharing our story with others.


However you feel about demons today or whether you personally feel like you have been cursed by a demon in your life, remember that Jesus has the strength and power over even the strongest demons and sins. Jesus has the power to change people into a completely different version of themselves. If He doesn’t give up on us, we shouldn’t give up on others either.


Questions:

  1. Who in your life has made a significant change in how they act or look? Do you believe that they will revert back to their old ways or that they are on the “straight and narrow path” now? How can you support them in their new life?

  2. Have you had a “conversion moment” where you turned your life around? Have you shared that story with anyone?


Prayer:

Dear Lord, Thank you for being stronger than anything I could face in this life. I trust You to heal me from literal or figurative demons and I put my faith in You to live a life devoted to You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen


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