Jesus Casts the Demons into a Herd of Swine

This meditation is based on a passage for May 19, 2010 in the Daily Lectionary Year 2 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).

Text: Matthew 8:28-34

Reflection and Question: Mark 5:1-20 and Luke 8:26-39 also share the basic outline of this passage. Jesus heals the sick by casting demons or unclean spirits into a herd of pigs who then rush over the cliff into the lake and drown. Understandably, in all three gospels the herdsmen who have lost their valuable property — albeit animals considered unclean by the Jews — then run off and tell everybody what happened. Finally, in all three gospels, the neighborhood responds to this event with a request that Jesus leave. Would you have asked Jesus to leave after doing this? Why or why not?

Prayer: Blessed Jesus, here were two men so fierce that no one dared pass near them. When You healed them, all the people around wanted You gone. May Your healing hand be upon those who are tormented still, and may we stay close, giving thanks. Amen.