The Gospel of Mark | Unseen | Mark 5.9-17 |

by | Dec 10, 2023

“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. 11 A large herd of pigs was feeding on the nearby hillside.12 The demons begged Jesus, “Send us among the pigs; allow us to go into them.” 13 He gave them permission, and the impure spirits came out and went into the pigs. The herd, about two thousand in number, rushed down the steep bank into the lake and were drowned. 14 Those tending the pigs ran off and reported this in the town and countryside, and the people went out to see what had happened. 15 When they came to Jesus, they saw the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons, sitting there, dressed and in his right mind; and they were afraid. 16 Those who had seen it told the people what had happened to the demon-possessed man—and told about the pigs as well. 17 Then the people began to plead with Jesus to leave their region.” Mark 5.9-17

Jesus goes across the Sea to a land of nonbelievers. Some say this was a part of the Decapolis, west of Galilee. There he finds the man possessed of the demon and Jesus decides to do something about it. He decides to set this man free from the hell in which he is living by sending the many demons into a herds of pigs.

The herd, now possessed of the many demons, goes mad and run off a cliff into the water, drowning themselves (Jesus shows no mercy on demons). As a first result, the man is in his right mind, clothed and no longer full of evil. Secondly, the town folk see their loss of profit from the pigs and ask Jesus to leave their region. They cared more for their economic well being then the health of the man set free from the demon.

When Jesus shows up, what begins to stir in the spiritual realm is beyond our understanding. We might have seen this naked possessed man as crazy, a drunkard or on meth. Onlookers not knowing the story might see a herd of pigs running off a cliff as merely a mistake or tragedy. But Jesus sees clearly into both realms of the spirit. He sees the physical state of humanity and the spiritual state of the heavens. He sees both angels and demons, good and bad and understandings the world in which we talk.

Ephesians 6 tells us our battle is not against flesh and blood but about the forces in the spiritual realm. 2 Corinthians 4.18 tells us to “fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” Jesus sees into the unseen and he sees our deepest needs, the strongholds and battles that rage in that realm.

Most of use do not see or even think that what might be causing of angst is not occurring in this realm — that it is merely a result of what is happening in the spirit. Which is why we are to put on God’s armor, to pray, fast, read and live by his word.

What is it that is holding you back from experiencing God’s love? What strongholds have kept you from fully knowing the love of Christ? What are your doubts? What are your sins? Confess to the Lord now. To know him personally we must submit to his will and invite him into our world.

“O Lord God, you are good. Thank you for loving me. For in my brokenness I find healing. In your suffering, death and resurrection I find life. Come now, Holy God, into my heart. Help me know the truth of your love and the forgiveness of the Son. Break the strongholds and lead me into the hope of tomorrow. For you are good and your love endures forever.” Amen