21 Dec A Good Way Off
In the 8th chapter of Matthew, the devils that had possessed the two individuals, feared Jesus wanting to have nothing to do with him. Devils don’t contend against Jesus; they contend against our flesh. We must trust and rely on Jesus and not our flesh.
Perhaps someone, trusting in their own flesh think that they are ok trusting in their own way instead of trusting in God’s way for their life. Perhaps they are a good way off, like the swine were, from participating in certain depths of sin. They are self-righteous, a goody two-shoes. They are doing their thing, doing what they do just like the swine was doing what they do, eat, drink, and be merry (Read Luke 12:19-20). They are not aware that if not for the mercy of God, they could be over-run with devils and be brought down to a very steep place, possibly perishing in the process, and going to hell.
The pigs had the ability to swim but their ability to swim was no match for the devil’s ability to kill and destroy. It is noteworthy that those devils had to get permission from Jesus to enter those pigs.
With God as our shield, our buckler, our protector, the devil can’t even come against us unless he has permission from God. There are many things God will not allow the devil to come against us with. That is why it is so important to not be drawn away by our own lusts, drawn away from the mercy and protection of God (Read James 1:13-15).
Although the two were possessed, they still had God’s mercy over them as exemplified by the fact that God never allowed them to run violently down that steep place and drown themselves in the sea. Also, they were mercifully healed and delivered from those devils.
The devils in the two asked Jesus if he had come to torment them before the time. They know that there is an appointed time (Judgment Day) that they will be cast into hell and sent into greater torments. Conversely, the devil is utilizing whatever means are at his disposal to get people to forget or neglect that such a day is coming to the detriment of their souls if they have not repented and turned from sin.
The swine, of course without God’s mercy, went to an immediate and violent death. That is the devil’s sole purpose, to steal, kill, and destroy (Read John 10:10). He is immediate in carrying out that mission unless he is restrained by the mercy of God. The devil is not playing just to be playing. He is playing for keeps. We are the ones who must not play. We must not play around with our one eternity bound soul. Nor should we play around with God. God is not a good play partner.
The bible says (Read Ephesians 2:1) that we were dead in trespasses and sins, but he quickened some of us meaning he gave life to us through the life-saving blood of his son Jesus Christ. We’re thankful that he allowed so many of us to come out of our spiritual tombs and meet up with his son who delivered us, quickened us from sin and the devil.
So, if you’re a good way off from meeting up with Jesus in the free pardon of your sins, make haste and pray that Jesus will draw closer to you before you find yourself in a steep place. God bless you.
Written under the inspiration of God by Vernon L. Coleman on Dec. 20, 2022.