So [Jesus and the disciples]
arrived in the region of the Gerasenes, across the lake from Galilee. As Jesus was climbing out of the boat, a man who was possessed by demons came out to meet him. For a long time he had been homeless and naked, living in the tombs outside the town. As soon as he saw Jesus, he shrieked and fell down in front of him. Then he screamed, "Why are you interfering with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? Please, I beg you, don't torture me!" For Jesus had already commanded the evil spirit to come out of him. This spirit had often taken control of the man. Even when he was placed under guard and put in chains and shackles, he simply broke them and rushed out into the wilderness, completely under the demon's power.
— Luke 8:26-29 NLT
Never lose sight of the underlying truth in this passage: When Satan enters a life, his ultimate goal is the same as for the man in today's verses — isolation, self-inflicted pain, anguish, loss of human identity, total destruction, and ultimately, death. While temptations are presented as alluring shortcuts to things we want, the evil one uses the temptations as traps to ensnare us and deceive us into letting him take control. His control first comes with a host of pleasures. In the end, however, they lead to all that we see in the man in today's passage. Remember this man the next time temptation knocks. Understand, this man's condition is Satan's desire for you, and surrendering to his power through sin is the open door for him to come in and take control.
Father, open my eyes so that I am not blind to the deceptive tricks and the alluring temptations of Satan. Banish him, I ask in the mighty name of Jesus, from any influence in my life. Remove, through your Holy Spirit, any broken and mangled thinking that sin has left in my life. Keep me in my right mind and give me a pure heart to distinguish your truth from Satan's lies. In Jesus' name. Amen.
Related Scripture Readings
- John 8:42-47
- 2 Corinthians 2:9-11
- Ephesians 6:10-11
About This Devotional
What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.
What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.
Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.