Today my reading was Luke 8:26-39 which is the story of Jesus healing the demoniac by casting out the demons who had over taken him for so long. A couple of things came out of my reading of this account and looking over what some commentators have had to say (Morris & Perrin in Tyndale’s Commentary on Luke). In Matthew’s account it was 2 men that came up to Jesus but in Mark and here in Luke it is just 1 man.
Return to your home, and recount [the story] of how many and great things God has done for you. And [the man] departed, proclaiming throughout the whole city how much Jesus had done for him. Luke 8:39 [AMP]
The first is that the land that Jesus and His disciples had landed after Jesus had calmed the storm and waves, was very much a Gentile area will little to no Jewish occupants. Close by to where the demoniac came up to Jesus, there was an entire legion of Roman soldiers encamped whose mascot was a wild boar (this countryside was apparently known for its population of wild boars). So, the fact that the demoniac said that his name was Legion probably is connected with the Roman encampment and it is possible that the influence of the debauchery of Rome carried out in idolization of Caesar, may have had something to do with the proliferation of demonic spirits that had come into the man.
When the man approached Jesus he addressed him as “Jesus, the Son of the Most High God”. This is another account of the spiritual world being keenly aware of Who Jesus is and the power He holds. Rather than having the threat of being sent into the “Abyss”, the demons asked if they could enter a herd of pigs on the hill; as Jesus gave permission, they did so and then the pigs freaked out and ran down into the lake and drowned. This had to have been a very expensive loss for the pig owner whose herders had gone into town to tell the story of what they had seen.
What ultimately ends up happening is that rather than the towns people grasping the amazing opportunity they had in front of them, they (in fear) asked Jesus to leave and He obliged. However, the man Jesus had saved from his predicament, asked Jesus is he could go with Him. Jesus’ response is the title of my QTVOTD today.
I think the command by Jesus is the command He has for many of us. Some are called by God to be missionaries, some are called into full time ministry, and then there are those of us who Jesus has saved from the Wrath of God against our sin, who are called to “go home and tell of the great things God has done for us”. Don’t look past the command by Jesus here “Go home and recount the many things GOD has done for you” and the following sentence of what the man did, “He departed, proclaiming through the whole city what JESUS had done for Him.” When I talk about what God has done for me in my life, my dialog should focus on what Jesus has ‘Done’ as well as what He is ‘doing’. My eternity is secure because of a work that has been done by my Savior; the Good News of Jesus is found in what He has done for me and the great things He has done for others. If my focus is on Eternal things, then my goal while I am here is building the Kingdom of God through continuous sharing of God’s goodness and direction in my life.