Deliver Us from Bondage
You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. 1 John 4:4
Have you ever felt trapped, imprisoned, isolated, without hope? You will sympathize with a man who lived in the region of the Gerasenes. For many years, he hadn’t lived in a house or worn clothes. When the townspeople tried to chain him up, the demon who lived inside him broke the chains. He was forced to live among the tombs (Luke 8:26-27).
But one day Jesus came to this area. When Jesus saw him, he commanded the impure spirit to come out. The man fell at Jesus’ feet and shouted, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, don’t torture me!” (vv. 28-29).
The evil being who’d overpowered the man cowered beneath the power of The Deliverer, the Son of the Most High God. One of the signs of his messiahship was Jesus’ power over demons. He drove them out with a word. One day Jesus will send all demons to Hell for eternity.
Jesus asked the demon his name and he replied, “Legion.” An army of demons! They begged Jesus to let them go into some pigs who were feeding on the hillside (vv. 31-32).
“Go.” Jesus said. The demons went into the pigs. They rushed down the steep bank into the lake and were drowned. Those tending the pigs saw what had happened, ran off to report this in the town and countryside, and the people went out to see what was going on (vv. 33-35).
They found the man sitting at Jesus’ feet, dressed and in his right mind. They were overcome with fear and asked Jesus to go away.
Jesus got into the boat to leave (vv. 36-37). But the man he’d delivered begged Jesus to let him go too. Instead Jesus sent him home to share his story with the people in his town. They were so bound up in making a living they couldn’t respond to the miracle in faith.
We too can be bound by jobs, by pleasing others, or more serious addictions. We need to fall at Jesus’s feet and ask the Deliverer to set us free, help us live according to his will, and give us hope.
Read Luke 8:36-39. How do you think the town reacted to the man’s testimony? Do you think he would stop? Have you ever experienced deliverance from a dreadful situation? Have you shared your story with others to glorify God?
Contrast the different responses of the demoniac and Gerasenes with the Philippians’ responses in Acts 16:16-24. Who had wrong responses, who had right ones?
What does 2 Peter 2:19-21 say about believers turning to things that put them into bondage? How can we find freedom according to Romans 7:15-8:2?
Nancy J. Baker
This devotion is part of a series, The Miracles of the Messiah.