Jesus was traveling by boat with His disciples (Mark 5:1-18), when He took them across the Sea of Galilee to the region of Gerasenes, a land inhabited by Gentiles. When Jesus got out of the boat, a demon-possessed man ran toward Him and fell to his knees. The demons shouted at Jesus, “What do You want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God!” And the demons begged Him to have mercy on them.
Jesus asked the man, “What is your name?” But his answer came again from the demons within him: “My name is Legion, for we are many.”
A herd of pigs was feeding nearby, and the demons begged Jesus to allow them to enter into the animals. The demons knew that they had no authority and power in the presence of God’s glory. Satan loves to taunt and ridicule helpless people, but when Jesus shows up, the devil quickly turns into the weak and pathetic loser he really is.
That is another aspect of life that has not changed. Only today, Satan is forced to cower and hide not just at the sight of Jesus but of any follower of Christ. The name of Jesus in the mouth of a believer has awesome power!
Giving the demons permission to enter into the body of a bunch of nasty pigs was a fitting irony, and Jesus let them do it. At once the pigs plunged off a nearby cliff to their deaths. To me, this has always seemed a perfect foreshadowing of what Satan and his demons have to look forward to on the Day of Judgment.
Nicky Cruz, internationally known evangelist and prolific author, turned to Jesus Christ from a life of violence and crime after meeting David Wilkerson in New York City in 1958. The story of his dramatic conversion was told first in The Cross and the Switchblade by David Wilkerson and then later in his own best-selling book Run, Baby, Run.