2 Powerful Storms – Jesus Casts Out Demons
“When He came to the other side into the country of the Gadarenes, two men who were demon-possessed met Him as they were coming out of the tombs. They were so extremely violent that no one could pass by that way.”
Dear Family & Friends,
Storms come in many shapes and sizes. Physical storms can be fearsome and often create a lot of damage. But some storms brew. They take time to build up their power before unleashing their fury. Jesus calmed the raging waters with a word, but on the other side of the Galilee waited an even scarier storm. Matthew tells how Jesus casts out demons. He has the authority to quiet external storms as well as internal storms.
The Storm on the Sea of Galilee
The disciples had only been following orders when they launched the fishing boat into the Sea of Galilee. The Master had not warned them about the weather forecast when they set sail, and, terrified, they found themselves in the midst of a dangerous squall. But when they called upon Jesus to help them, He responded with a word, rebuking the wind and waves.
The disciples’ heartbeats finally slowed to a normal pace as they spotted the shore in the near distance. Sighing with relief the men drew close, dropped anchor, and prepared to disembark. But before their feet hit the dry land of the Gadarenes they heard a great commotion.
Another Storm on the Other Side
Two wild-looking men approached, screaming expletives and recklessly motioning their arms in great agitation. Their straggly hair ruffling in the breeze and claw-like fingernails raking the air gave them an eerie look as if they were not quite human. Their strange and frenetic behavior, characteristic of a terrible psychological disorder, stemmed from demons who had taken up residence in their bodies. The men blocked the road and violently attacked anyone who tried to pass.
Fear again likely welled up in the exhausted disciples as the unkempt recluses approached closer. “What business do we have with each other, Son of God?” they screamed at Jesus. “Have you come here to torture us before our time?”
Jesus Casts Out Demons
The demons living within the two men recognized Jesus and entreated Him to send them into a herd of swine if He was going to command them to leave the men. Jesus complied. “Go!” He commanded. The demons immediately exited the men and entered the nearby pigs, sending the herd stampeding down a steep bank and into the sea.
Two storms – one external and one internal – created different responses. Astounded by Jesus’ authority over the wind and the waves, the disciples continued to follow Him, while the swine handlers and the whole city of Gadarenes begged Jesus to leave their region.
Many Kinds of Internal Storms
Today, demon possession still affects mankind. Although most of us have never encountered someone in this state, we still encounter many types of internal storms. Severe mental illness often lends itself to difficult and scary circumstances.
On a smaller scale, we all deal with internal struggles. Intruding thoughts are hard to release. Wrong beliefs color our world and our understanding of ourselves and others. Depression, anxiety, and phobias affect our lives in various ways. Some of these are brought on by physical imbalances, while some are the result of believing lies from the devil.
Jesus’ Has Authority Over All Types of Storms
Yet none of these struggles are out of God’s control. He has the power to calm raging seas in all areas of our world including our minds. Sometimes He uses the wisdom of doctors and therapists. Other times the cure is instantaneous as it was for the demon-possessed men in the story.
But one thing is true! Jesus, our heavenly King, has authority over all types of storms. He rebukes the wind and waves and they listen. Jesus casts out demons and they leave. And He is willing to calm your troubled sea if you let Him. Will you trust and follow Him, like the disciples, or implore Him to leave like the townspeople?