And when he saw Jesus from afar, he ran and fell down before him. And crying out with a loud voice, he said, “What have you to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I adjure you by God, do not torment me.” For he was saying to him, “Come out of the man, you unclean spirit!” And Jesus asked him, “What is your name?”He replied, “My name is Legion, for we are many.” And he begged him earnestly not to send them out of the country. Now a great herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside, and they begged him, saying, “Send us to the pigs; let us enter them.” So he gave them permission. And the unclean spirits came out and entered the pigs; and the herd, numbering about two thousand, rushed down the steep bank into the sea and drowned in the sea. Mark 5:6-13 ESV
Having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all. Ephesians 1:18-23 ESV
World War II was a long and terrible war, and after the Allied forces gained victory in Europe they still had to defeat the strength of Japan. Japan had very fierce military power, but after the United States dropped the world’s first atom bomb in the Arizona desert the Allies demanded that Japan surrender unconditionally and save themselves from the devastation of their military forces and of their homeland. Japan ignored this demand, and soon after that the United States dropped a devastating atom bomb on the Japanese city of Hiroshima, killing about 80,000 people. A few days later Soviet forces attacked Japanese troops in Manchuria and overwhelmed them. Then the United States dropped a second atom bomb on the Japanese city of Nagasaki. The Japanese recognized that they had been overpowered, and they surrendered to the Allies.
When Jesus told the evil spirits to come out of the man they had enslaved, they knew they had to surrender. Even though there were many, many demons inside this man, enough to call a “legion,” they knew that Jesus had the power to do anything he wanted to do with them. They didn’t want to be sent away to another place, and instead they begged Jesus to send them into a herd of pigs that was feeding on the hillside. Jesus gave them permission to go into the pigs, and as soon as the evil spirits entered the pigs they immediately went into a frenzy and rushed together down into the sea, where they drowned. The evil spirits were completely defeated.
Jesus is completely in control of the worst demons and evil spirits of the whole universe, and even of Satan himself. The devil and all his evil forces thought they had won when they worked their evil plan to put Jesus on the cross, but they didn’t realize that Jesus would defeat them by dying and rising again from the dead. Everyone who believes in Jesus never has to be afraid of the devil and his demons, because Jesus has won the victory over them forever. Jesus keeps his people safe in his care and will bring us at last to his heavenly kingdom, where we will be his forever and always.
Dear Jesus, thank you for defeating the devil and all the forces of evil for us. Please keep us safe in your care. Amen.