Read Mark 5:15-20. Why do you think Jesus sent the man into Decapolis to witness to his family and friends rather than nurturing him in his newfound faith by keeping him with Him?
The word Decapolis comes from two words: deca meaning ten, and polis meaning city. The region of Decapolis was an area of ten cities along the shores of the Sea of Galilee in the first century.
These cities were bound together by a common language and culture. The demoniac was known by many people in that region. He had struck fear into their hearts through his unpredictable, violent behavior. Jesus saw in him one who longed for something better, and so He miraculously delivered the man from the demons that tormented him.
When the townspeople heard that Jesus had permitted the demons to possess their herd of swine, and that the swine had run over a cliff into the sea, they came out to see what was taking place. Mark’s gospel records, “Then they came to Jesus, and saw the one who had been demon-possessed and had the legion, sitting and clothed and in his right mind. And they were afraid” (Mark 5:15, NKJV). The man was whole again — physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. The essence of the gospel is to restore people broken by sin to the wholeness Christ has created them for.
What better person to reach these ten cities of Decapolis than a transformed demoniac who could share his testimony with the entire region? Ellen G. White states it well: “As witnesses for Christ, we are to tell what we know, what we ourselves have seen and heard and felt. If we have been following Jesus step by step, we shall have something right to the point to tell concerning the way in which He has led us. We can tell how we have tested His promise, and found the promise true. We can bear witness to what we have known of the grace of Christ. This is the witness for which our Lord calls, and for want of which the world is perishing”. — The Desire of Ages, p. 340. God often uses unlikely witnesses who are changed by His grace to make a difference in our world.
|What’s your own story; that is, your own conversion story? What do you tell others about how you came to faith? What can you offer someone unconverted, who could benefit from the experience you can share?|