Friday, September 25, 2020

2020.09.25 Hopewell @Home ▫ Luke 8:22–39

Read Luke 8:22–39

Questions from the Scripture text: What does Jesus get into in Luke 8:22? With whom? What does he propose? What does Jesus do as they sail (Luke 8:23)? What comes down on them? What happens to the boat? What do the disciples do in Luke 8:24? What do they say? What does Jesus do? What does Jesus say? What do the wind and water do? What does Jesus ask them in Luke 8:25? How do the disciples respond to this question? What question do they ask one another? Of what are they now afraid? Where does the sailing trip take them (Luke 8:26)? Who meets Jesus, when He steps onto land (Luke 8:27)? What are some evidences of this demonic activity? What does he do when he sees Jesus (Luke 8:28)? What does he call Jesus? What does he beg Jesus? What had Jesus already done (Luke 8:29)? What had the demon often done? What does Jesus now ask in Luke 8:30? And how does he answer? Why? What are they begging Jesus in Luke 8:31? What else was there (Luke 8:32)? What do they now beg Jesus? What does Jesus do? What do the demons do (Luke 8:33)? What do the now-possessed swine do? Who sees this in Luke 8:34? What do they do? What do those who hear do (Luke 8:35)? What do they find? How do they respond (end of verse 35)? Who also tell them what in Luke 8:36? With what are they now seized, and what do they plead (Luke 8:37)? What does the delivered man now plead (Luke 8:38)? What does Jesus do to him? About Whose great doings does Jesus command him to tell (Luke 8:39)? About whose great doings does he tell?

The Lord Jesus is scary powerful. The disciples thought wind and waves were scary (Luke 8:23-24) until they met the One who could command them (Luke 8:25). The Gadarenes must have thought the demonic man described in Luke 8:29 was scary, until they met the One who had delivered him and were seized with great fear (Luke 8:37). 

If we are at all genuinely interacting with the Lord Jesus, we will be overwhelmed by His greatness. That’s the unifying theme of all of these short pictures of our Lord. Against the backdrop of His glorious greatness, the Holy Spirit gives us many types of responses in the various ones whom He encounters.

Terrified, doomed, and begging to be permitted to continue in wickedness. That’s the demons. There are many who say that they believe, but do worse than demons, who at least tremble. God have mercy on those who seem largely unimpressed/unaffected by Christ! And those who are trying to figure out how their sinning can be uninterrupted by Jesus, let them know that they are basically demonic.

Terrified, but just wanting to pretend that this Jesus doesn’t exist. Out of sight, out of mind. That’s what the Gadarenes wanted Jesus to be. And there are many who do this with the true Christ—even by filling their head with a sentimentalized, mushy, docile version of Him. They hide from the true Redeemer-Lord-King-God Jesus by sending Him away from their mind/hear/life by having instead a cosmic boyfriend, teddy-bear, or genie-in-a-bottle that they call by the same name.

Terrified, wondering, but still asking for help, and still sticking with Him. This summarizes the disciples’ response. They are with Him, and they know that He can help, and they know that He wants to, but they are still easily shaken by circumstances. And their view of Him is small enough that they sometimes find it jarring to encounter the greatness of His power and authority. The differences between the disciples and the Gadarenes is that they go along with Him, trembling at Him but continuing in wonder at Him and trying to know Him more, as He truly is.

Awed, rejoicing, and telling others. This is where the disciples will eventually end up, but it’s where we find the delivered demoniac already. The Gadarenes thought they were rid of Christ, but here comes the delivered man announcing what great things Jesus had done for him (Luke 8:39b). He has rightly identified Jesus Himself as God, who has done these great things (verse 39a).

What does your (non?)response to Jesus’s greatness tell you about where you are? How would you come to where you need to be?

Suggested songs: ARP45A “My Heart Is Greatly Stirred” or TPH219 “O Worship the King”

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