CLINT PERCEFULL, CHILDREN'S MINISTER
I love movies and books with a great ending, as I am sure we all do. My favorite endings involve a twist or a surprise that the reader does not see coming. I can remember the first time I ever read a book like that. I was in total awe and could not read fast enough. All of the sudden certain things in the past began to make more sense, and my opinion on events and characters changed as a result.
In Mark chapter 5 we are told about a man who was possessed by a demon; actually multiple demons. This man would walk around the graveyard at night howling and cutting himself with sharp stones. The local people had tried numerous times to tie him up, but he would always break free.
Jesus sees this man and immediately addresses the demons. These demons ask Jesus what seems to be a favor. They ask not to be banished to a far off place, but to be allowed to enter a heard of pigs nearby. Jesus grants this request and the pigs meet their demise by drowning in the lake. It is at this point in the story that things seem odd to me. Why would Jesus give these demons what they want? Why would He allow someone else’s herd of pigs to be destroyed? This sentiment was probably shared by the local townspeople as they ask Jesus to leave.
The Bible does not tell us Jesus’ thought process in this moment. It does not give us a reason for granting a request to a bunch of demons. I have sat and pondered this for quite some time. Maybe Jesus wanted to show the man that the demons had left him; a visual representation that the demons were gone. Perhaps Jesus wanted to show His power over the demons. Maybe it was to verify to the local people that this man was healed and no longer needed to be chained up.
I do not know the answer to this question, but I do know the author of the story. I know that God’s plans are far better than our own and His knowledge is vastly superior. I am confident that one day I will understand the reasoning behind this action and my love and appreciation for God will increase. This also serves as a great reminder to me that no matter what may happen in our own lives, God knows best. Current circumstances may seem illogical, but wait for the ending! It will be worth it.