The toleration we have for “the devil we know”

Mark 5:1-20 tells the story of the demoniac in the Gerasene region. What strikes me each time I read this story is the toleration the villagers had for the bondage this man was under and when he was actually made whole, they wanted Jesus out of the region.

They had “the devil they knew” and could “manage” the bondage at that point. At least, that was the lie they were working with day after day. Then, when real deliverance showed up, they had a power they didn’t know.

Too often we tolerate the bondage of the enemy because it’s somehow “known” to us. It’s “manageable.”

But when Jesus walks into the room… we can’t manage him. He sets people free, but HE is in control. We prefer the illusion of our own “management” skills.

This is a story that haunts me. Do I tolerate the activity of the enemy in my life or around me too much?

Don’t Settle for Status Quo Bondage

One of the notes I made on the passage in Mark 5 where Jesus heals the demoniac: “Don’t settle for letting people stay in bondage.”

Sometimes it is hard work seeing people set free. It might be pray. It might be fasting. It might be counseling. It might be a huge combination of many things.

Don’t give up. Don’t let up. Jesus had to deal with the demoniac to some extent because his name was Legion. There is indication that this conversation took a little more time than “normal” for Jesus. Yet, he stayed at it.

Don’t settle for bondage… in yourself… or others.