Monday, September 22, 2014

the Gadarene Demoniac

Jesus heilt den Besessenen von Gerasa Mittelalterliche Buchillustration (PD:USA, old) via Wikimedia Commons

The story of the Gadarene demoniac is found in Luke 8:26-39, and it was in my reading for this past week.

As I listened to the story over and over, I noticed a few things.

First, I noticed that there were two undesirables in the story:

1) the demonized madman who could not be securely bound, even with chains,
2) and the Man who could command the demons to leave.

And it was the Man who could command the demons to leave that, in the end, the townspeople could not abide staying with them.

Divine Authority
The other thing that stood out to me is that Jesus commands the healed man to, "tell what great things God has done for you" . . .

. . . and that man went away telling "what great things Jesus had done for him."

And that this is exactly right. Because Jesus is God, the Son of God.

New Insights
And I'd noticed that before, but I hadn't noticed this: that the demonized man becomes an evangelist. He goes his way, telling the Good News of Christ.

Not only is his affliction taken from him, not only is he freed from his enemies, not only is the bad thing not there anymore . . . but a good thing takes its place.

He not only is not a demoniac anymore . . . he is an evangelist.

He's not left neutral. He's not defined by what he isn't.

He is an evangelist. He is a bearer of good news.

He's not only saved from damnation, but he's given a job, a role, a place in the Kingdom of God.

This is the good news.

Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell


Don said...

Jess--great post! Thanks for the insight on the two undesirables, and the fact that the demoniac was no longer defined by that, but by his role as an evangelist. I had never thought about the transformation in exactly that way before.

A fabulous way to start my day! The deep blessings of Christ to you!

Jessica Snell said...

Wow, thanks, Fr. Don! Hearing that makes *my* day. :)