How merciful He has been

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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Thursday, November 17, 2016

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May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems. Deb

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Today’s scripture reading:

Mark often highlights the supernatural struggle between Jesus and Satan. The demons’ goal was to control the humans they inhabited; Jesus’ goal was to give people freedom from sin and Satan’s control. The demons knew they had no power over Jesus; so when they saw Jesus, they begged not to be sent to some distance place. Jesus granted their request to enter into the herd of pigs but ended their destructive work in people. Perhaps Jesus let the demons destroy the pigs to demonstrate his own superiority over a very powerful yet destructive force. He could have sent them to hell, but he did not, because the time for judgment had not yet come. In the end, the Devil and all his angels will be sent into eternal fire.

Jesus told this man to tell his friends bout the miraculous healing. Most of the time, Jesus urged those he healed to keep quiet. Why the difference? Here are possible answers: (1) The demon-possessed man had been alone and unable to speak. Telling others what Jesus did for him would prove that he was healed. (2) This was mainly a Gentile and pagan area, so Jesus was not expecting great crowds to follow him or religious leaders to hinder him. (3) By sending the man away with this Good News, Jesus was expanding his ministry to people who were not Jews.

This man had been demon possessed but became a living example of Jesus’ power. He wanted to go with Jesus, but Jesus told him to go home and share his story with his friends. If you have experienced Jesus’ power in your life, as you, like this man, enthusiastically sharing the good news with those around you? Just as we would tell others about a doctor who cured a physical disease, we should tell about Christ who cures our sin. (NLT)

Mark 5:1-20 – So they arrived at the other side of the lake, in the land of the Gerasenes. Just as Jesus was climbing from the boat, a man possessed by an evil spirit ran out from a cemetery to meet him. This man lived among the tombs and could not be restrained, even with a chain. Whenever he was put into chains and shackles—as he often was—he snapped the chains from his wrists and smashed the shackles. No one was strong enough to control him. All day long and throughout the night, he would wander among the tombs and in the hills, screaming and hitting himself with stones.

When Jesus was still some distance away, the man saw him. He ran to meet Jesus and fell down before him. He gave a terrible scream, shrieking, “Why are you bothering me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? For God’s sake, don’t torture me!” For Jesus had already said to the spirit, “Come out of the man, you evil spirit.”

Then Jesus asked, “What is your name?”

And the spirit replied, “Legion, because there are many of us here inside this man.” Then the spirits begged him again and again not to send them to some distant place. There happened to be a large herd of pigs feeding on the hillside nearby. “Send us into those pigs,” the evil spirits begged. Jesus gave them permission. So the evil spirits came out of the man and entered the pigs, and the entire herd of two thousand pigs plunged down the steep hillside into the lake, where they drowned.

The herdsmen fled to the nearby city and the surrounding countryside, spreading the news as they ran. Everyone rushed out to see for themselves. A crowd soon gathered around Jesus, but they were frightened when they saw the man who had been demon possessed, for he was sitting there fully clothed and perfectly sane. Those who had seen what happened to the man and to the pigs told everyone about it, and the crowd began pleading with Jesus to go away and leave them alone.

When Jesus got back into the boat, the man who had been demon possessed begged to go, too. But Jesus said, “No, go home to your friends, and tell them what wonderful things the Lord has done for you and how merciful he has been.” So the man started off to visit the Ten Towns of that region and began to tell everyone about the great things Jesus had done for him; and everyone was amazed at what he told them.

[Jesus] said to [his apostles], “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” –Mark 16:15 (NIV)

I would like to share the prayer that Pramila Barkataki (Assam, India) wrote:

Prayer: Dear God, give us the courage to share the good news with others. Thank you for helping us overcome shyness, hesitation, and fear so that we can share the message of your love. Amen,

To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/

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