Matthew 8:28
New International Version
When he arrived at the other side in the region of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men coming from the tombs met him. They were so violent that no one could pass that way.

New Living Translation
When Jesus arrived on the other side of the lake, in the region of the Gadarenes, two men who were possessed by demons met him. They lived in a cemetery and were so violent that no one could go through that area.

English Standard Version
And when he came to the other side, to the country of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men met him, coming out of the tombs, so fierce that no one could pass that way.

Berean Study Bible
When Jesus arrived on the other side in the region of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men met Him on their way from the tombs. They were so violent that no one could pass that way.

Berean Literal Bible
And He having come to the other side, to the region of the Gadarenes, two being possessed by demons met Him, coming forth out of the tombs, extremely violent, so that no one was able to pass by that way.

New American Standard Bible
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.

King James Bible
And when he was come to the other side into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with devils, coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way.

Christian Standard Bible
When he had come to the other side, to the region of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men met him as they came out of the tombs. They were so violent that no one could pass that way.

Contemporary English Version
After Jesus had crossed the lake, he came to shore near the town of Gadara and started down the road. Two men with demons in them came to him from the tombs. They were so fierce that no one could travel that way.

Good News Translation
When Jesus came to the territory of Gadara on the other side of the lake, he was met by two men who came out of the burial caves there. These men had demons in them and were so fierce that no one dared travel on that road.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
When He had come to the other side, to the region of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men met Him as they came out of the tombs. They were so violent that no one could pass that way.

International Standard Version
When Jesus arrived on the other side in the region of the Gerasenes, two demon-possessed men met him as they were coming out of the tombs. They were so violent that no one could travel on that road.

NET Bible
When he came to the other side, to the region of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men coming from the tombs met him. They were extremely violent, so that no one was able to pass by that way.

New Heart English Bible
And when he came to the other side, into the country of the Gadarenes, two people possessed by demons met him there, coming out of the tombs, exceedingly fierce, so that nobody could pass that way.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And when Yeshua came to the other side to the region of the Gadarenes, two demoniacs met him, who came out from the graveyard, extremely evil, so that no man could pass on that road.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
When he arrived in the territory of the Gadarenes on the other side [of the Sea of Galilee], two men met him. They were possessed by demons and had come out of the tombs. No one could travel along that road because the men were so dangerous.

New American Standard 1977
And when He had come 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 exceedingly violent that no one could pass by that road.

Jubilee Bible 2000
And when he was come to the other side, into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with demons, coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way.

King James 2000 Bible
And when he came to the other side into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with demons, coming out of the tombs, exceedingly fierce, so that no man might pass by that way.

American King James Version
And when he was come to the other side into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with devils, coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way.

American Standard Version
And when he was come to the other side into the country of the Gadarenes, there met him two possessed with demons, coming forth out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man could pass by that way.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And when he was come on the other side of the water, into the country of the Gerasens, there met him two that were possessed with devils, coming out of the sepulchres, exceeding fierce, so that none could pass by that way.

Darby Bible Translation
And there met him, when he came to the other side, to the country of the Gergesenes, two possessed by demons, coming out of the tombs, exceeding dangerous, so that no one was able to pass by that way.

English Revised Version
And when he was come to the other side into the country of the Gadarenes, there met him two possessed with devils, coming forth out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man could pass by that way.

Webster's Bible Translation
And when he had come to the other side, into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with demons, coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way.

Weymouth New Testament
On His arrival at the other side, in the country of the Gadarenes, there met Him two men possessed by demons, coming from among the tombs: they were so dangerously fierce that no one was able to pass that way.

World English Bible
When he came to the other side, into the country of the Gergesenes, two people possessed by demons met him there, coming out of the tombs, exceedingly fierce, so that nobody could pass that way.

Young's Literal Translation
And he having come to the other side, to the region of the Gergesenes, there met him two demoniacs, coming forth out of the tombs, very fierce, so that no one was able to pass over by that way,
Study Bible
The Demons and the Pigs
27The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the sea obey Him!” 28When Jesus arrived on the other side in the region of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men met Him on their way from the tombs. They were so violent that no one could pass that way. 29“What do you want with us, Son of God?” they shouted. “Have You come here to torture us before the proper time?”…
Cross References
Matthew 4:24
News about Him spread all over Syria, and people brought to Him all who were ill with various diseases, those suffering acute pain, the demon-possessed, those having seizures, and the paralyzed--and He healed them.

Matthew 8:27
The men were amazed and asked, "What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the sea obey Him!"

Mark 5:1
On the other side of the sea, they arrived in the region of the Gerasenes.

Luke 8:26
They sailed to the region of the Gerasenes, across the lake from Galilee.

Treasury of Scripture

And when he was come to the other side into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with devils, coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way.

when.

Mark 5:1
And they came over unto the other side of the sea, into the country of the Gadarenes.

Luke 8:26
And they arrived at the country of the Gadarenes, which is over against Galilee.

Acts 10:38
How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.

Gergesenes.

Genesis 10:16
And the Jebusite, and the Amorite, and the Girgasite,

Genesis 15:21
And the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Girgashites, and the Jebusites.

Deuteronomy 7:1
When the LORD thy God shall bring thee into the land whither thou goest to possess it, and hath cast out many nations before thee, the Hittites, and the Girgashites, and the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites, seven nations greater and mightier than thou;

coming.

Mark 5:2-5
And when he was come out of the ship, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit, …

Luke 8:27,29
And when he went forth to land, there met him out of the city a certain man, which had devils long time, and ware no clothes, neither abode in any house, but in the tombs…

so.

Judges 5:6
In the days of Shamgar the son of Anath, in the days of Jael, the highways were unoccupied, and the travellers walked through byways.







Lexicon
When
Καὶ (Kai)
Conjunction
Strong's Greek 2532: And, even, also, namely.

[Jesus]
αὐτοῦ (autou)
Personal / Possessive Pronoun - Genitive Masculine 3rd Person Singular
Strong's Greek 846: He, she, it, they, them, same. From the particle au; the reflexive pronoun self, used of the third person, and of the other persons.

arrived
ἐλθόντος (elthontos)
Verb - Aorist Participle Active - Genitive Masculine Singular
Strong's Greek 2064: To come, go.

on
εἰς (eis)
Preposition
Strong's Greek 1519: A primary preposition; to or into, of place, time, or purpose; also in adverbial phrases.

the
τὸ (to)
Article - Accusative Neuter Singular
Strong's Greek 3588: The, the definite article. Including the feminine he, and the neuter to in all their inflections; the definite article; the.

other side
πέραν (peran)
Adverb
Strong's Greek 4008: Over, on the other side, beyond. Apparently accusative case of an obsolete derivative of peiro; through, i.e. Across.

in
εἰς (eis)
Preposition
Strong's Greek 1519: A primary preposition; to or into, of place, time, or purpose; also in adverbial phrases.

the
τὴν (tēn)
Article - Accusative Feminine Singular
Strong's Greek 3588: The, the definite article. Including the feminine he, and the neuter to in all their inflections; the definite article; the.

region
χώραν (chōran)
Noun - Accusative Feminine Singular
Strong's Greek 5561: Feminine of a derivative of the base of chasma through the idea of empty expanse; room, i.e. A space of territory.

of the
τῶν (tōn)
Article - Genitive Masculine Plural
Strong's Greek 3588: The, the definite article. Including the feminine he, and the neuter to in all their inflections; the definite article; the.

Gadarenes,
Γαδαρηνῶν (Gadarēnōn)
Adjective - Genitive Masculine Plural
Strong's Greek 1046: From Gadara; a Gadarene or inhabitant of Gadara.

two
δύο (dyo)
Adjective - Nominative Masculine Plural
Strong's Greek 1417: Two. A primary numeral; 'two'.

demon-possessed [men]
δαιμονιζόμενοι (daimonizomenoi)
Verb - Present Participle Middle or Passive - Nominative Masculine Plural
Strong's Greek 1139: To be possessed, be under the power of an evil-spirit or demon. Middle voice from daimon; to be exercised by a d?Mon.

met
ὑπήντησαν (hypēntēsan)
Verb - Aorist Indicative Active - 3rd Person Plural
Strong's Greek 5221: To meet, go to meet. From hupo and a derivative of anti; to go opposite under, i.e. To encounter, fall in with.

Him
αὐτῷ (autō)
Personal / Possessive Pronoun - Dative Masculine 3rd Person Singular
Strong's Greek 846: He, she, it, they, them, same. From the particle au; the reflexive pronoun self, used of the third person, and of the other persons.

on their way
ἐξερχόμενοι (exerchomenoi)
Verb - Present Participle Middle or Passive - Nominative Masculine Plural
Strong's Greek 1831: To go out, come out. From ek and erchomai; to issue.

from
ἐκ (ek)
Preposition
Strong's Greek 1537: From out, out from among, from, suggesting from the interior outwards. A primary preposition denoting origin, from, out.

the
τῶν (tōn)
Article - Genitive Neuter Plural
Strong's Greek 3588: The, the definite article. Including the feminine he, and the neuter to in all their inflections; the definite article; the.

tombs.
μνημείων (mnēmeiōn)
Noun - Genitive Neuter Plural
Strong's Greek 3419: A tomb, sepulcher, monument. From mneme; a remembrance, i.e. Cenotaph.

[They were] so
λίαν (lian)
Adverb
Strong's Greek 3029: Very; very much, exceedingly, greatly. Of uncertain affinity; much.

violent
χαλεποὶ (chalepoi)
Adjective - Nominative Masculine Plural
Strong's Greek 5467: Perhaps from chalao through the idea of reducing the strength; difficult, i.e. Dangerous, or furious.

that
ὥστε (hōste)
Conjunction
Strong's Greek 5620: So that, therefore, so then, so as to. From hos and te; so too, i.e. Thus therefore.

no
μὴ (mē)
Adverb
Strong's Greek 3361: Not, lest. A primary particle of qualified negation; not, lest; also (whereas ou expects an affirmative one) whether.

one
τινὰ (tina)
Interrogative / Indefinite Pronoun - Accusative Masculine Singular
Strong's Greek 5100: Any one, some one, a certain one or thing. An enclitic indefinite pronoun; some or any person or object.

could
ἰσχύειν (ischyein)
Verb - Present Infinitive Active
Strong's Greek 2480: To have strength, be strong, be in full health and vigor, be able; meton: I prevail. From ischus; to have force.

pass
παρελθεῖν (parelthein)
Verb - Aorist Infinitive Active
Strong's Greek 3928: From para and erchomai; to come near or aside, i.e. To approach, go by, perish or neglect, avert.

that
ἐκείνης (ekeinēs)
Demonstrative Pronoun - Genitive Feminine Singular
Strong's Greek 1565: That, that one there, yonder. From ekei; that one (neuter) thing); often intensified by the article prefixed.

way.
ὁδοῦ (hodou)
Noun - Genitive Feminine Singular
Strong's Greek 3598: A way, road, journey, path. Apparently a primary word; a road; by implication, a progress; figuratively, a mode or means.
(28) The country of the Gergesenes.--The exact determination of the locality presents many difficulties. In all the three Gospels we find various readings, of which the best supported are Gadarenes in St. Matthew, and Gerasenes in St. Mark and St. Luke. "Gergesenes" is, however, found in some MSS. of high authority, and the variations are obviously of very early date. The main facts as to the three regions thus indicated are as follows:--

(1.) Gadara was a city east of the Sea of Galilee, about sixteen miles from Tiberias. It is identified with the modern Um Keis, the ruins of which are more than two miles in circumference, and stand at the north-west extremity of the mountains of Gilead, near the south-east corner of the Lake. The tombs of the city, chambers in the limestone rock often more than twenty feet square, are its most conspicuous feature, and are, indeed, the sole abode of its present inhabitants. Under the Roman occupation it was important enough to have two amphitheatres and a long colonnaded street.

(2.) Gerasa was a city in the Gilead district, twenty miles east of the Jordan, described sometimes as belonging to C?le-Syria, sometimes to Arabia. It also has ruins which indicate the former splendour of the city. Of these two, it is clear that Gadara fits in better with all the circumstances of the narrative; and if "Gerasenes" is more than the mistake of a transcriber, it could only be because the name was used vaguely for the whole Gilead district. The reading "Gadarenes" in that case would probably come from some one better acquainted with the position of the two cities.

(3.) There was no city named Gergesa, but the name Gergesenes was probably connected with the older Girgashites, one of the Canaanite races that occupied the country before the invasion of Israel (Genesis 10:16; Genesis 15:21; Joshua 3:10; Joshua 24:11; et al.). Apparently, however, from the last passage referred to, they were on the western side of the Jordan. It is, on the whole, more likely that the reading was a mistake, than that the old tribe still remained with its old name; but it is possible that the name of Gerasa may represent an altered form of Girgashim.

Two possessed with devils.--St. Mark and St. Luke speak of "one" only. A like difference meets us in St. Matthew's "two blind men" at Jericho (Matthew 20:30) as compared with the "one" of the two other Gospels. The natural explanation is that, in each case, one was more prominent than the other in speech or act, and so was remembered and specified, while the other was either forgotten or left unnoticed. The difference, as far as it goes, is obviously in favour of the independence of St. Matthew's narrative. The "tombs" in the neighbourhood of Gadara, hewn out in the rock, have been already mentioned. To dwell in such tombs was, to the ordinary Jew, a thing from which he shrank with abhorrence, as bringing pollution, and to choose such an abode was therefore a sign of insanity.

St. Luke adds that he wore no clothes (i.e., strictly, no outer garment; the word does not imply actual nakedness). St. Mark (whose account is the fullest of the three) notices that he had often been bound with fetters and chains, and that, with the abnormal strength often found in mania, he had set himself free from them. The insanity was so homicidal that "none could pass by that way," so suicidal that he was ever cutting himself with stones, howling day and night in the wildness of his paroxysms.

For a full discussion of the subject of demoniacal possession, see Excursus at the end of this Gospel.

III.--DEMONIAC POSSESSION (Matthew 8:28).

(1.) As to the word, the Greek ?????? (the "knowing," or the "divider") appears in Homer as interchangeable with ???? (God). In the mythology of Hesiod( Works and Days, i. 108) we have the first downward step, and the ???????? are the departed spirits of the men who lived in the first golden age of the world. They are the good genii of Greek religion, averters of evil, guardians of mortal men. The next stage introduced the neuter of the adjective derived from ?????? as something more impersonal, and ?? ???????? was used by Plato as something "between God and man, by which the former communicates with the latter" (Symp., p. 202), and in this sense Socrates spoke of the inward oracle whose warning he obeyed, as his ????????, and was accordingly accused of bringing in the worship of new ????????, whom the State had not recognised. The fears of men led them, however, to connect these unknown intermediate agents with evil as well as good. The ?????? of the Greek tragedians is the evil genius of a family, as in the case of that of Agamemnon. A man is said to be under its power when he is swayed by some uncontrollable, frenzied passion that hurries him into guilt and misery.

Such were the meanings that had gathered round the word when the Greek translators of the Old Testament entered on their task. They, as was natural, carefully avoided using it in any connection that would have identified it with the God of Israel. It appears in Psalm 90:3, where the English version gives "destruction;" in Deuteronomy 32:17, and Psalm 106:37, where the English version has "devils," and in this sense it accordingly passed into the language of the Hellenistic Jews, and so into that of the writers of the Gospels. So St. Paul speaks of the gods whom the heathen worshipped as ???????? (1Corinthians 10:20).

(2.) As to the phenomena described, the belief of later Judaism ascribed to "demons," in the sense which the word has thus acquired, many of the more startling forms of bodily and mental suffering which the language of modern thought groups under the general head of "disease." Thus, in the history of Tobit, the daughter of Raguel is possessed by the evil spirit Asmodeus, and he slays her seven bridegrooms (Tobit 3:8). Or passing on to the Gospel records, we find demoniac agency the cause of dumbness (Matthew 9:32), blindness (Matthew 12:22), epilepsy (Mark 9:17-27), or (as here, and Mark 5:1-5) insanity. To "have a devil" is interchangeable with "being mad" (John 7:20; John 8:48; John 10:20, and probably Matthew 11:18). And this apparently was but part of a more general view, which saw in all forms of disease the work, directly or indirectly, of Satan, as the great adversary of mankind. Our Lord went about "healing all that were oppressed of the devil" (Acts 10:38). "Satan had bound" for eighteen years the woman who was crippled by a spirit of infirmity" (Luke 13:16). And these "demons" are described as "unclean spirits" (Matthew 10:1; Matthew 12:43, et al.) acting under a "ruler" or "prince," who is popularly known by the name of Beelzebub, the old Philistine deity of Ekron, and whom our Lord identifies with Satan (Matthew 12:24-26). The Talmud swarms with allusions to such demons as lurking in the air, in food, in clothing, and working their evil will on the bodies or the souls of men. St. Paul, though he refers only once to "demons," in this sense, and then apparently as the authors of false doctrines claiming divine authority, but coming really from "seducing spirits" (1Timothy 4:1), seems to see in some forms, at least, of bodily disease the permitted agency of Satan, as in the case of the chastisement inflicted on the incestuous Corinthian (1Corinthians 5:5; 2Corinthians 2:11), his own "thorn in the flesh" (2Corinthians 12:7), and possibly in other like hindrances to his work (1Thessalonians 2:18).

(3.) The belief bore its natural fruit among the Jews of our Lord's time. The work of the exorcist became a profession, as in the case of the sons of Sceva at Ephesus (Acts 19:13). Charms and incantations were used, including the more sacred forms of the divine name. The Pharisees appear to have claimed the power as one of the privileges belonging to their superior holiness (Matthew 12:27). Josephus narrates that a herb grew at Machaerus, the root of which had the power of expelling demons (whom he defines as the spirits of wicked men), and that he had himself beheld, in the presence of Vespasian, a man possessed with a demon, cured by a ring containing a root of like properties. As a proof of the reality of the dispossession, a vessel of water was placed at a little distance from the man, which was overthrown by the unseen demon as he passed out from the man's nostrils (Wars, vii. 6, ? 3; Ant. viii. 2, ? 5). The belief as to the demons being "the souls of the dead," lingered in the Christian Church, was accepted by Justin, who, coming from Samaria, probably received it from the Jews (Apol. I., i., p. 65), and was recognised as at least a common belief by Chrysostom (De Lazaro, I., p. 728).

(4.) Our Lord's treatment of the cases of men thus "possessed with demons" stands out partly as accepting the prevailing belief in its highest aspects, partly as contrasted with it. He uses no spells or charms, but does the work of casting out as by His own divine authority, "with a word." He delegates to the Twelve the power to "cast out demons," as well as to cure diseases (Matthew 10:8); and when the Seventy return with the report that the devils (i.e., demons) were subject unto them in His name, He speaks of that result as a victory over Satan (Luke 10:17-18). He makes the action of the demons the vehicle for a parable, in which first one and then eight demons are represented as possessing the same man (Matthew 12:43-45). It may be noted that He nowhere speaks of them, in the language of the later current beliefs of Christendom, as identical with the "fallen angels," or as the souls of the dead, though they are evil spirits subject to the power of Satan.

(5.) It is obvious that many hard questions rise out of these facts. Does our Lord's indirect teaching stamp the popular belief with the seal of His authority? or did He, knowing it to be false, accommodate Himself to their belief, and speak in the only way men were able to understand of His own power to heal, teaching them as they were "able to hear it?" (Mark 4:33). If we answer the former question in the affirmative, are we to believe that the fact of possession was peculiar to the time and country, and that the "demons" (either as the souls of the dead, or as evil angels) have since been restrained by the influence of Christendom or the power of Christ? or may we still trace their agency in the more obscure and startling phenomena of mental disease, in the delirium tremens of the drunkard, in the orgiastic frenzy of some Eastern religions, in homicidal or suicidal mania? And if we go as far as this, is it a true theory of disease in general to assign it, in all cases, to the permitted agency of Satan? and how can we reconcile that belief either with the temper which receives sickness as "God's visitation," or with that which seeks out its mechanical or chemical causes? Wise and good men have answered these questions very differently, and it may be that we have not the data for an absolutely certain and exhaustive answer. It is well to remember, on the one hand, that to speak of the phenomena of the Gospel possessions as mania, hysteria, or the like, is to give them a name, but not to assign a cause--that science, let it push its researches into mental disease ever so far, has to confess at last that it stands in the presence of unknown forces, more amenable often to spiritual influences than to any medical treatment; and on the other, that our Lord came to rescue men from the thraldom of frenzy and disease, and so to prepare them for the higher work of spiritual renovation, rather than rudely to sweep away the traditional belief of the people as to their source, or to proclaim a new psychological theory.

Verses 28-34. - The Gadarene demoniacs. Parallel passages: Mark 5:1-20; Luke 8:26-39, where see full notes. Matthew is much less detailed. Matthew mentions two demoniacs; the parallel passages, one; the reason may be either that one was less fierce than the other, or that only one came from Gerasa (Nosgen). But in our present knowledge of the extent of inspiration, we cannot confidently affirm that the evangelists were kept from errors in numbers, and that the addition of the second demoniac is not due' to some misunderstanding, perhaps of the use of the plural in the demoniac's answer in the parallel passage, Mark 5:9 (cf. Weiss, 'Marcus-ev.,' p. 172). (For a similar difficulty, cf. the note on Matthew 9:27-31.) With regard to this mysterious narrative generally, the explanation of its details can be little more than empirical in our present knowledge of psychology and of spiritual influences. Verse 28. - And when he was come to the other side into the country of the Gergesenes; Revised Version, Gadarenes, which is certainly right here, as is "Gerasenes" in the parallel passages (cf. Westcott and Hort, it. 'App.'). Gergesa (Textus Receptus here, and Alexandrian authorities in parallel passages) and Gerasa (unless, with Origen on John 1:28, we understand by this the Arabian Gerasa fifty miles away)are probably forms of the same name now represented by Khersa, a village discovered (? in 1857) by Thomson ('The Land and the Book,' pp. 375, sqq., edit. 1880) on the eastern side of the lake, and lying "within a few rods of the shore," with "an immense mountain" rising directly above it, "in which are ancient tombs, out of some of which the two men possessed of the devils may have issued to meet Jesus. The lake is so near the base of the mountain that the swine, rushing madly down it, could not stop, but would be hurried on into the water and drowned." To this Origen's description (loc. cit.) corresponds: "Gergesa, to which the Gergesenes belong, is an ancient city by what is now called the Lake of Tiberias, by which is a steep place adjacent to the lake, and down this, as is pointed out, the swine were cast headlong by the demons." Gadara, in some sense the capital of Peraea (Josephus, 'Bell. Jud.,' 4:07. 3), and one of the towns of the Decapolis confederacy (ch. 4:25), was some twelve miles distant from Khersa, and six miles from the nearest part of the lake, to which, in fact (as the stamp of a ship on its coins shows), its territory extended (cf. Schiirer, II. 1. p. 100, sqq.). St. Matthew describes the locality, not by the little-known village, but by the well-known city of the district, to which (as we may gather from the parallel passage, Mark 5:20) the news of the miracle afterwards spread. But since he leaves the expression, "the city," in vers. 33, 34 as he fontal it in his sources, i.e. Khersa, the result is at first misleading There met him (ὑπήντησαν; occurrerunt, Vulgate). St. Matthew (contrast vers. 2, 5, 19) omits the nearer approach recorded in the parallel passages, Mark 5:6 and Luke 8:28. Two (vide supra). Possessed with devils (Matthew 4:24, note), coming out of the tombs; Revised Version, coming forth out. The Greek shows that they did not merely come from among the tombs, but actually out of them (cf. the experience of Warburton, as quoted in Trench on this miracle). Exceeding fierce, so that no man might (Revised Version, could) pass by that way. Matthew only. It deepens the contrast to their present behaviour. Perhaps "that way" refers to the Roman road by the side of the lake (cf. Thomson, op. cit., p. 378). 8:28-34 The devils have nothing to do with Christ as a Saviour; they neither have, nor hope for any benefit from him. Oh the depth of this mystery of Divine love; that fallen man has so much to do with Christ, when fallen angels have nothing to do with him! Heb 2:16. Surely here was torment, to be forced to own the excellence that is in Christ, and yet they had no part in him. The devils desire not to have any thing to do with Christ as a Ruler. See whose language those speak, who will have nothing to do with the gospel of Christ. But it is not true that the devils have nothing to do with Christ as a Judge; for they have, and they know it, and thus it is with all the children of men. Satan and his instruments can go no further than he permits; they must quit possession when he commands. They cannot break his hedge of protection about his people; they cannot enter even a swine without his leave. They had leave. God often, for wise and holy ends, permits the efforts of Satan's rage. Thus the devil hurries people to sin; hurries them to what they have resolved against, which they know will be shame and grief to them: miserable is the condition of those who are led captive by him at his will. There are a great many who prefer their swine before the Saviour, and so come short of Christ and salvation by him. They desire Christ to depart out of their hearts, and will not suffer his word to have place in them, because he and his word would destroy their brutish lusts, those swine which they give themselves up to feed. And justly will Christ forsake all that are weary of him; and say hereafter, Depart, ye cursed, to those who now say to the Almighty, Depart from us.
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