Summary: This sermon shows how Christ completely delivers those who come to Him
The Demoniac of Gadara
Text: mark 5:1-20Introduction: We turn in our Bibles now to the fifth chapter of Mark’s gospel, and what a chapter it is. Few chapters so comprehensively contain the record of Christ’s power to save. In this chapeter Jesus faces the three great enemies of man, the devil, disease and death, and herer he delivers a man a woman and a child, no wonder we can sing, “A Wonderful Saviour is Jesus My Lord.”
Now as the chapter opens we find the Lord and His disciples making land at Gadara, where there was a graveyard. Now when we say graveyard, try not to think cemetery. This was not Carmountside or Bradwell or some modern cemetery with headstones, instead it was a hillside with pockets of caves which were used as tombs. In fact we know that hillside well for it is often referred to on the news. This area is known today as part of the Golan Heights. Until the Israelis occupied this area, many of the caves were used for hiding places for Arab troops and their long range artillery which they used against Israel. But in Jesus’ time it was a burial place.
As we place this incident in the chronology of Mark’s gospel we find it happens immediately after the stilling of the storm. Life with Jesus was anything but unexciting. We can imagine the disciples are still a little dazed by their near death experience on Galilee, and in awe of the Saviour as they set foot ashore at Gadara. Remember too they had made that journey during the night, so as they landed on the other side it was dark, or at least dawn, and now they found themselves in this place, among the tombs. For those who were not so brave, or for any that were a mite superstitious, this was in itself an unsettling experience. We can imagine the silence of the night, the waves gently lapping the shore, the disciples wide eyed and wondering what comes next when out of the darkness comes this mad man, screaming and howling in the night!!
I. Here Was A Man in Satan’s GRIP – vss 1-5
A. The Bible tells us he was a man with an unclean spirit – in fact he was possessed by a great many demons, thousands in all.
1. He would testify that he was possessed by Legion, but the demons would reveal that the name spoke of many – vs 9
2. A legion in the Roman army could number as many as six thousand men, so this man was truly in Satan’s hold, his heart was a stronghold for the Wicked one.
3. You know there are many in that condition today, sold out to Satan, sold out to sin and unable to help themselves, and beyond the help of others..
4. We don’t know how this man got into such a bad way, but mark this down demon possession is a very real condition, and any missionary working in pagan lands could testify to its reality – even in our own land I believe there is now a new fixation with things occultic and I think we shall see and probably are already seeing a rise in the demonic.
5. You don’t have to go very far to see our shops displaying ornamental Buddha’s and Hindu gods on their shelves – idolatry and demonism go hand in hand.
6. We do not have to go far to find many in the grip of drug addiction – that which the Bible calls sorcery.
7. And you do not have to watch much TV or listen to much modern music to find the presence of darkness looming.
8. And I open newspaper and magazines and am invited by colourful ads to consult with psychics and mediums
9. There are many in our land just as hopelessly lost as this poor man, and just as much in Satan’s grip and bound for Satan’s hell.
10. Now notice the characteristics of the demonic…
B. Mark graphically describes the poor man who was possessed by “an unclean spirit” and whose life was a misery.
1. He lived, or existed among the tombs (verse 3), and “no man could bind him” (verse 3).
a. Here was a man possessed of super human strength. We are in the realms of the supernatural now.
2. He was a desperate character (verse 4),
a. Here is a man so wild that no man can tame him.
3. He was uncontrollable and was a public danger;
4. He was his own enemy (verse 5), and Luke 8: 27 tells us that he was naked.
a. Here are two indication of demonic activity.
(i) Nudity – loss of inhibition: I think this is very evident in our society – there to be seen in the immodesty of our clothing, the emphasis on the sensual and the sexual, so that our young people are dressing in the flimsiest clothes from the earlies ages, and believe in so doing that they are all the more attractive for it