Luke 8:37 Then all the people of the surrounding country of the Gerasenes asked him to depart from them, for they were seized with great fear. So he got into the boat and returned.
Someone a while back asked me if fear is ever present when God’s presence or will is clear. I thought of the story in Mark 5 and Luke 8. To give a recap, a man with a legion of demons received deliverance. Mark’s story doesn’t mention this word, but Luke’s account states after the man was delivered “they were seized with great fear.”
Seized with great fear.
I find this odd really. A man that was such a danger to himself and others is now in his right mind. The threat is gone. He’s not a danger to himself (or anyone or anything else) anymore. That calls for rejoicing, right?!
But the people didn’t seem to care about the miracle.
I have read many commentaries on this story. I’ve tried to reason it from various angles. But the fact is, people were seized with great fear in the very presence of the One who could save them. The very One that brings life, deliverance, healing, hope, resurrection etc the people begged to leave them.
Truth reveals. It disrupts.
I wonder if the people thought that their comfortable way of living and understanding was getting too disrupted. It was shining a light too much on their own sins. Their own needs. Their own demons.
Did the people lovingly receive the delivered man back? We don’t really know. We know he was given a charge by Yeshua to proclaim his testimony. And scripture says he did. What became of it was up to God and each person’s heart.
This story reveals that God showing up a big way doesn’t always garner a great reaction. The very person, the Word, that says “Fear not” had a strong fear reaction to His presence.
Today, I’m challenged that when God does show up in my life that I’m not seized with great fear. I’m not so attached to my comforts that I push away the Author and Finisher of my faith. My Savior. Redeemer. Deliverer. Healer.
God isn’t afraid of himself. Think about that. If our spirit is fearing God’s presence and His working, it’s not from Him. Our spirit inside us, that is redeemed in Christ, will bear witness. It’s our flesh that fights it. The spirit and flesh are at war.
I felt led to share this today. There’s a few that need to read this. Fear not. Let God do the work He needs to. He always works for our good. Remember that.