Notes Mark 5 A
Last week we talked about going to the other side and how sometimes we can be in the center of God's will, we are moving ahead in him, but we still meet with opposition. When this happens we cannot fall into the mind set, as we saw the disciples did, that God does not care about us or our situation.
1. Do not fear for fear is the opposite of faith.
2. Have faith in God, and in the fact that He loves us.
3. Be rooted and grounded in the love of Christ which passes our knowledge that we might be filled with the fullness of God.
Now let us turn to Mark 5
In today's lesson we are going to see the root of the opposition the disciples encountered. The devil or the demons that were waiting on the other side.
And they came over unto the other side of the sea, into the country of the Gadarenes. And when he was come out of the ship, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit.
As I just said, the opposition they had just encountered was linked to the fact these demons knew who was on the way. They knew Jesus was in the boat.
Notice verse 2 says immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit.
Now I want to look at some of the characteristics of these unclean spirits or one under the control of the enemy.
First— Verse 2B-3A
immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit, Who had his dwelling among the tombs;
1.Unclean – You will find in the lives of those who are under the influence of demons an element of uncleanness. This man lived in the tombs with dead bodies. Those under the influence of demons will associate with the dead, if not the physically dead, they will associate with the spiritually dead, because this is where they will feel comfortable.
You will find even in churches that are spiritually dead, those with unclean spirits do not feel threatened so they are quite comfortable there.
This uncleanness will also be evident either physically as in living in rubble or spiritually in that their character will be unclean. When you are around them their speech or actions leave you feeling dirty.
Who had his dwelling among the tombs;
2.Isolation I want you to see the isolation in this mans life. The enemy always wants to isolate those under their control. Again we see this man living in the tombs. This man did not have to live here because he at least had friends if not family. Look at what Jesus told him in verse 19. Go home to thy friends
Isolation is a key tool of the enemy because if you hear only him, and if he has your mind, he has you.
We are going to see that this man was obviously tormented by the devil. He lived in caves, he cried day and night.
Now I want you to see that possession does not just happen, someone does not go to bed one night in their right mind and wake up the next morning insane.
There are stages to the downward spiral.
1. Depression....It sets in and anyone who has ever fought depression will tell you that one of the strongest keys is isolation. The enemy want to isolate you so you will only hear his voice.
You don't want to go to that Bible study group or church service...those ladies do not like you... they do not know what you are going through...they do not care.
You see the enemy does not want you to hear;
we are more than conquerors through him that loved us,
That Jesus; spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.
He defeated death, hell and the grave.
Because He lives, you can too.
2. Oppression. the exercise of authority or power in a burdensome, cruel, or unjust manner.
to lie heavily upon (the mind, a person, etc.):
The enemy want you to fell like there is no hope, he wants to burden you down.
I want you to see that Jesus paid the price that we can be free from oppression.
Revelations tells us that we overcome the wicked one.
By the blood of the lamb and by the word of our testimony. Rev 12:11
In the night before Jesus was crucified he was in the Garden of Gethsemane
Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder. And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy. Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me. Matthew 26:36-38
Here we see Jesus suffering under great satanic oppression and depression. For Jesus says, “My soul (which is the seat of our emotions) is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death.” When the physician Luke gives an account of this scene he adds:
And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground. Luke 22:44
It is a medical fact that under extreme mental pressure, the pores can become so dilated that blood will be secreted out of them. Jesus is paying the price so that we might have victory over satanic oppression and depression. This kind of attack is real and the church is full of it today. Yet very little is said of it because we feel like if we are not this happy, happy Christian then there must be something wrong with us. Yet it can be an attack from Satan and demonic forces.
God wants you whole body, soul, and spirit. Here in the Garden Jesus paid the price that you might have peace.
3. Possession: Where the enemy comes in and takes over and the personality changes. It does not just affect the mind or the body but it affects all three. But Jesus has come to set the captive free.
Listen to Jesus' mission statement:
The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;....
To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.
He has come to proclaim liberty to the captives...You are free, You are free....
The opening of the prison to them that are bound....bound by depression, oppression or even possession.
And the best part... to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness;
Jesus himself said.. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. John 10:10
Verse 3 b- 4.
and no man could bind him, no, not with chains: Because that he had been often bound with fetters and chains, and the chains had been plucked asunder by him, and the fetters broken in pieces: neither could any man tame him.
3.Supernatural strength. This is common among those influenced by the enemy. This is evidence that possession is more than mental but it affects the physical body as well.
And always, night and day, he was in the mountains, and in the tombs, crying, and cutting himself with stones.
4.Torment Now no one wants to be tormented. They do not fall under the control of the enemy because they want to be tormented. No this comes later. At first sin is fun, demonic influence can seem to be very alluring and seductive, very attractive and fascinating. If sin were not fun in the beginning no one would get involved in it.
Proverbs 20:17 Bread of deceit is sweet to a man; but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.
Cheat on the truth on what is right...when you cheat on life or your loved ones.
It will turn into gravel in your mouth.
Tom has a saying that I think is very appropriate.
Sin always takes you further then you want to go
Keeps you longer then you want to stay
And cost you more then you want to pay
Sin and torment go hand and hand.
Verse 6 – 7A
But when he saw Jesus afar off, he ran and worshipped him, And cried with a loud voice, and said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of the most high God?
I find this very interesting and that we see over and over again the demon possessed immediate recognition of the authority of Jesus. Now the religious leaders of His day did not recognize him but the demon possessed did. What you are seeing here is a partial fulfillment of Romans 14:11 which was quoted from Isaiah 45:23 As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.”
This man under the influence did not worship Jesus as “Lord” but as “Son of the most high God “and there is a vast difference. It is not enough to just recognize who Jesus is, as you can see by this passage even the demons do that but you must make Him Lord, Master of your life.
I adjure thee by God, that thou torment me not.
I think it is interesting that this demon who had tormented this man day and night now asked Jesus not to torment him. This demon knows what he deserved but he is asking “in the name of God or by God” swear (adjourn) that you will not torment me. The spirit realm knows the laws of sowing and reaping.
For he said unto him, Come out of the man, thou unclean spirit. And he asked him, What is thy name? And he answered, saying, My name is Legion: for we are many.
Jesus commanded the demon to come out and even asked his name. I believe that Jesus already knew there was more than one demon in this man and maybe He asked this question for the sake of those around him or even us today. At any rate we learn the both the depth of sin and the depth or the human spirit.
And he besought him much that he would not send them away out of the country.
This is a very important verse. There are two things I want to discuss.
1.Demon spirits are very territorial. Notice they besought Jesus not to send them out of the country, literally “a space of territory”. Demons authority is very territorial. Say if a spirit of “lust for worldly thing” were sent to a region of Mennonites it would have a hard time finding a place to dwell, it would have very limited authority. This is why you find different strongholds in different places, but if you allowed that spirit to dwell in Las Vegas or Las Angeles it would not have a hard time at all finding a place to dwell and great authority.
This knowledge is very important to anyone who has a call into Intercession it has even recently been given a name, spiritual mapping. It is when a study of an area has been done to discover the strongholds. When a group of intercessors come together and begin to tare down these strong holds the gospel is increased dramatically.
The American church as a whole has gotten very weak in the realm of spiritual warfare and it needs to wake up and take back the authority the Lord has given to the church.
2.These spirits were afraid of being sent out of the country not to hell. Why is that? It is because they knew that it is not their appointed time to be consigned to hell. God himself has not laid that charge to them yet. He will but that time is not now. If you will look at Revelation chapter 19-20 you will see that it is not until after “the great tribulation” that the devil is bound and cast into the bottomless pit.
And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season.
So when you tell a demon to go to hell, it will just laugh at you because it knows you do not have the authority to send him there, therefore he does not have to obey.
So what does this verse teach us? Know your enemy and know your authority.
Now there was there nigh unto the mountains a great herd of swine feeding. And all the devils besought him, saying, Send us into the swine, that we may enter into them.
These verses show us that these spirits do not want to be disembodied. They will take a pig over nothing.
Luke 11:24 gives a good picture of what it is like for the spirit without a body.
When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest; and finding none…
And forthwith Jesus gave them leave. And the unclean spirits went out, and entered into the swine: and the herd ran violently down a steep place into the sea, (they were about two thousand;) and were choked in the sea.
Now this is the reaction of the pigs. The demons did not force these pigs down the hill and into the water to drown. We just saw where they wanted a body. But this was the reaction of the pigs. The torment that these pigs experienced when these demons entered them caused them to loose all rational thinking. They drown themselves trying to escape these demons.
Now I am not trying to make too much of this but it is true that some people would rather kill themselves then be tormented any more. Now I do not believe that all suicide is a result of trying to escape the torment of demons but some is.
And they that fed the swine fled, and told it in the city, and in the country. And they went out to see what it was that was done. And they come to Jesus, and see him that was possessed with the devil, and had the legion, sitting, and clothed, and in his right mind: and they were afraid.
Now here we see the difference between the control of demons and a relationship with our Lord.
This man that had been crying out night and day, cutting himself was not sitting calmly at Jesus’ feet.
This man who naked was not clothed.
This man who was out of his mind was now at peace. What a great God we have.
And they that saw it told them how it befell to him that was possessed with the devil, and also concerning the swine. And they began to pray him to depart out of their coasts.
I read a quote by John Oxenham based on a poem this incident in Scripture.
Rabbi, be gone! And take this fool of thine!
You love his soul; we prefer swine.
We read in our new and see programs on TV all the time where if it is a choice between the welfare of and individual or the wealth of a region society as a whole will always pick the wealth of a city, town or company that supports the town.
And when he was come into the ship, he that had been possessed with the devil prayed him that he might be with him. Howbeit Jesus suffered him not, but saith unto him, Go home to thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee, and hath had compassion on thee.
I believe all along that Jesus knew that this region would not receive him and Jesus with his great love for all mankind needed a witness so he took a man who so violently possessed and radically changed his life and then sent him to touch the hearts that He Jesus could not touch.
And he departed, and began to publish in Decapolis how great things Jesus had done for him: and all men did marvel.
This man was from Decapolis which means 10 cities. These 10 cities were Greek or Gentile cities and became rich sowing ground for the Apostle Paul. Philadelphia the city of brotherly love was one of these cities along with Damascus.
So we see that years before the disciples evangelized this area Jesus had already planted a seed.
Some plant others water but it is God that gives the increase.
Jesus planted a wittiness and He is asking today "Can I get a wittiness". We all may not be preachers or teachers or evangelist but we can all be a wittiness.