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5. Miracles of Jesus

1And they came to the other side of the sea, into the country of the Gerasenes. 2And when he was come out of the boat, straightway there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit, 3who had his dwelling in the tombs: and no man could any more bind him, no, not with a chain; 4because that he had been often bound with fetters and chains, and the chains had been rent asunder by him, and the fetters broken in pieces: and no man had strength to tame him. 5And always, night and day, in the tombs and in the mountains, he was crying out, and cutting himself with stones. 6And when he saw Jesus from afar, he ran and worshipped him; 7and crying out with a loud voice, he saith, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of the Most High God? I adjure thee by God, torment me not. 8For he said unto him, Come forth, thou unclean spirit, out of the man. 9And he asked him, What is thy name? And he saith unto him, My name is Legion; for we are many. 10And he besought him much that he would not send them away out of the country. 11Now there was there on the mountain side a great herd of swine feeding. 12And they besought him, saying, Send us into the swine, that we may enter into them. 13And he gave them leave. And the unclean spirits came out, and entered into the swine: and the herd rushed down the steep into the sea, in number about two thousand; and they were drowned in the sea. 14And they that fed them fled, and told it in the city, and in the country. And they came to see what it was that had come to pass. 15And they come to Jesus, and behold him that was possessed with demons sitting, clothed and in his right mind, even him that had the legion: and they were afraid. 16And they that saw it declared unto them how it befell him that was possessed with demons, and concerning the swine. 17And they began to beseech him to depart from their borders. 18And as he was entering into the boat, he that had been possessed with demons besought him that he might be with him. 19And he suffered him not, but saith unto him, Go to thy house unto thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee, and how he had mercy on thee. 20And he went his way, and began to publish in Decapolis how great things Jesus had done for him: and all men marvelled. 21And when Jesus had crossed over again in the boat unto the other side, a great multitude was gathered unto him; and he was by the sea. 22And there cometh one of the rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name; and seeing him, he falleth at his feet, 23and beseecheth him much, saying, My little daughter is at the point of death: I pray thee, that thou come and lay thy hands on her, that she may be made whole, and live. 24And he went with him; and a great multitude followed him, and they thronged him. 25And a woman, who had an issue of blood twelve years, 26and had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse, 27having heard the things concerning Jesus, came in the crowd behind, and touched his garment. 28For she said, If I touch but his garments, I shall be made whole. 29And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of her plague. 30And straightway Jesus, perceiving in himself that the power proceeding from him had gone forth, turned him about in the crowd, and said, Who touched my garments? 31And his disciples said unto him, Thou seest the multitude thronging thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me? 32And he looked round about to see her that had done this thing. 33But the woman fearing and trembling, knowing what had been done to her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth. 34And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague. 35While he yet spake, they come from the ruler of the synagogue's house saying, Thy daughter is dead: why troublest thou the Teacher any further? 36But Jesus, not heeding the word spoken, saith unto the ruler of the synagogue, Fear not, only believe. 37And he suffered no man to follow with him, save Peter, and James, and John the brother of James. 38And they come to the house of the ruler of the synagogue; and he beholdeth a tumult, and many weeping and wailing greatly. 39And when he was entered in, he saith unto them, Why make ye a tumult, and weep? the child is not dead, but sleepeth. 40And they laughed him to scorn. But he, having put them all forth, taketh the father of the child and her mother and them that were with him, and goeth in where the child was. 41And taking the child by the hand, he saith unto her, Talitha cumi; which is, being interpreted, Damsel, I say unto thee, Arise. 42And straightway the damsel rose up, and walked; for she was twelve years old. And they were amazed straightway with a great amazement. 43And he charged them much that no man should know this: and he commanded that something should be given her to eat.

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Mark 5:15. And they come to Jesus We have here a striking proof that not all who perceive the hand of God profit as they ought to do by yielding themselves to him in sincere godliness. Having seen the miracle, the Gadarenes were afraid, because the majesty of God shone brightly in Christ. So far they did right but now that they send him out of their territories, what could have been done worse than this? They too were scattered, and here is a shepherd to collect them or rather, it is God who stretches out his arms, through his Son, to embrace and carry to heaven those who were overwhelmed by the darkness of death. They choose rather to be deprived of the salvation which is offered to them, than to endure any longer the presence of Christ.

The apparent ground of their offense is the loss of the swine, but Luke assigns a loftier cause, that they were seized with a great fear;556556     “ ᾿Εφοβήθησαν, they were afraid, (Mark 5:15,) is by most Commentators understood of fear lest they might suffer a yet greater calamity; but it rather denotes awe at the stupendous miracle.” — Bloomfield and certainly, if they had been exasperated by the loss which they sustained, they would not have requested him, but would rudely have driven him out. They honor him as God’s minister, and yet are so struck with dread as to desire that he will go to a distance from them. Thus we see that they were not at all moved by a sense of the divine grace. And indeed, though all wicked men adore God, and bestow great pains on appeasing him, yet if they had their choice, they would withdraw to the greatest possible distance from him: for his face is terrible, so long as they contemplate him as a Judge, and not as a Father. The consequence is, that the gospel, which is more delightful than any thing that can be conceived, is everywhere considered to be so dismal and severe, that a good part of the world would wish that it were buried.

And yet it is true that their fear was partly occasioned by their loss. Thus at the present day, so long as men believe that the kingdom of God is opposed to their interest, either of a public or private nature, they are prepossessed by a depraved and carnal fear, and have no relish for his grace. Accordingly, when he comes, they think that God does not regard them with favor, but rather with anger, and, so far as lies in their power, they send him to another place. It is a mark of shameful insensibility in those men, that the loss of their swine gives them more alarm than the salvation of their soul would give them joy.




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