ImmerseMessiah NLT - Page 36


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.
Jesus demanded, “What is your name?”
“Legion,” he replied, for he was filled with many demons. The demons
kept begging Jesus not to send them into the bottomless pit.
There happened to be a large herd of pigs feeding on the hillside nearby,
and the demons begged him to let them enter into the pigs.
So Jesus gave them permission. Then the demons came out of the man
and entered the pigs, and the entire herd plunged down the steep hillside
into the lake and drowned.
When the herdsmen saw it, they fled to the nearby town and the surrounding countryside, spreading the news as they ran. People rushed out
to see what had happened. A crowd soon gathered around Jesus, and they
saw the man who had been freed from the demons. He was sitting at Jesus’
feet, fully clothed and perfectly sane, and they were all afraid. Then those
who had seen what happened told the others how the demon-possessed
man had been healed. And all the people in the region of the Gerasenes
begged Jesus to go away and leave them alone, for a great wave of fear
swept over them.
So Jesus returned to the boat and left, crossing back to the other side of
the lake. The man who had been freed from the demons begged to go with
him. But Jesus sent him home, saying, “No, go back to your family, and tell
them everything God has done for you.” So he went all through the town
proclaiming the great things Jesus had done for him.
On the other side of the lake the crowds welcomed Jesus, because they
had been waiting for him. Then a man named Jairus, a leader of the local
synagogue, came and fell at Jesus’ feet, pleading with him to come home
with him. His only daughter, who was about twelve years old, was dying.
As Jesus went with him, he was surrounded by the crowds. A woman in
the crowd had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding, and she
could find no cure. Coming up behind Jesus, she touched the fringe of his
robe. Immediately, the bleeding stopped.
“Who touched me?” Jesus asked.
Everyone denied it, and Peter said, “Master, this whole crowd is pressing
up against you.”

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