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Saturday, June 26, 2010

6/27/10- Mark 5:1-10- What Do you want with me?

1 They went across the lake to the region of the Gerasenes. 2 When Jesus got out of the boat, a man with an evil spirit came from the tombs to meet him. 3 This man lived in the tombs, and no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain. 4 For he had often been chained hand and foot, but he tore the chains apart and broke the irons on his feet. No one was strong enough to subdue him. 5 Night and day among the tombs and in the hills he would cry out and cut himself with stones.
6 When he saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and fell on his knees in front of him. 7 He shouted at the top of his voice, "What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? In God's name don't torture me!" 8 For Jesus had said to him, "Come out of this man, you evil spirit!" 9 Then Jesus asked him, "What is your name?" "My name is Legion," he replied, "for we are many." 10 And he begged Jesus again and again not to send them out of the area. (Mark 5:1-10)

The cry apart from God is really "Leave me alone!" The unbeliever does not want to hear about God (so they would remove all the quotes or possibly mentioning Him in culture- like "In God we trust" or "One nation under God."). So the demoniac asked, "What do you want with me?" The Christian, on the other hand, wants God's presence, God's conviction, God's purifying power upon them. The Christian also recognizes that God is God of all- the believers as well as the demon-possessed, or even those who do not want to deal with God. 

Prayer: Today, Lord, have to do with me. Shape me; mold me; fill me; use me.  We pray today for the people of the Gulf Coast.  We ask your mercy and grace to rest upon them, Lord.  Give them strength to persevere.  May they turn to you for help and also turn to you in faith.   Bring a quick end, Lord, to this disaster, that the world may know and see that you are God of the universe.

John Calvin abridged: When Christ told the water to be silent, he also showed power over all elements- including wicked human beings. In this passage, we see that while he could not naturally break chains, power was given to him through evil spirits to do so.  From this we may gather how sad, wretched and alarming is the tyranny of Satan. Bodily agony, however violent or cruel is not to be more dreaded than distress of the mind.  "He begged him not to send him out of the area"- the demons had sent the man into the tombs.  But Christ shows his superior authority to send the demons wherever he would.  Thus all of Satan's kingdom must bow to the superior authority of Christ, and come before him as a criminal before the judge. "What have we to do with thee?"- shows the state of rebellion the demons are in against God.  Yet, despite their pride, they are forced to submit to the governance of God. 

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