Sermon #51 Luke Sermons
Title: Grace for the Gadarene
Text: Luke 8:26-36
Subject: Christ Delivering the Maniac of
Date: Sunday Evening –
Tape # W-38b
For every chosen, redeemed sinner, there is an appointed time when he shall be saved by God’s almighty grace. It is called “The Time of Life” and “The Time of Love.” Though born children of wrath even as others, God’s elect were from eternity the objects of immutable mercy, love, and grace. Though we ran hell-bent to destruction, the Lord God, from old eternity, said, “Hitherto shalt thou go and no further.” Though Satan roared against us, though the legions of hell sought to destroy us, though our hearts were in league with hell itself, at God’s appointed time of love, the Lord Jesus Christ came to us, and by the power of his omnipotent grace saved us. It is my prayer to God that this night shall prove to be the time of love for some of you.
Turn with me to Luke 8:26-36. Here we see a poor, demon possessed maniac for whom the time of love had come. The title of my message is Grace for the Gadarene.
8:26-36] "And they arrived at the
country of the Gadarenes, which is over against
This event is recorded by Matthew, Mark and Luke. All three of these Gospel writers were inspired of God the Holy Spirit to tell the story in considerable detail. Mark gives us the most detailed account of what transpired that day in the land of the Gadarenes; but all three hold this story before us as a remarkable display both of our Lord’s great grace to needy sinners and of his sovereign dominion even over the demons of hell.
Proposition: As the Lord Jesus Christ
vanquished hell in the heart and life of this poor demoniac in
Hold your Bibles open on your laps and let me show you five things in these verses. May God the Holy Spirit be pleased, now, to speak through these stammering lips of clay to your hearts for the glory of Christ.
First, read verse 26. Here is
Jehovah’s Righteous Servant on a
The Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, came into this world as Jehovah’s servant. He came here to do his Father’s will. Here we see him going about the Father’s business. Here is the Good Shepherd seeking and finding one of his sheep. He had been coming to this place from everlasting. At last, at precisely the time appointed, he arrived on the scene.
"And they arrived
at the country of the Gadarenes, which is over against
Lord Jesus had just come from the other side of the
A. This is exactly what our all-glorious Christ did for all his people.
He left his lofty throne in heaven, came across the sea of time and mortality, suffered the horrible storm of God’s wrath as our Substitute to save us, and, when he had done that mighty work by which his chosen must be saved (When he had satisfied the wrath and justice of God and put away our sins by the sacrifice of himself!), he went back to the other side again.
Matthew "And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins."
Luke "For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost."
1 Timothy "This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief."
Romans 5:8 "But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."
1 John 3:5 "And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin."
Hebrews 10:10-14 "By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. (11) And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: (12) But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; (13) From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool. (14) For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified."
B. The Lord Jesus saves those we think might be the least likely objects of his grace.
He came to save the least likely of the Gadarenes, a wild man, a maniac, one who as entirely possessed of the devil. In fact, a legion of demons resided in his poor soul. However, as we shall see, this man would be he instrument of mercy by whom God would bring his grace and salvation to many others in days to come.
1 Corinthians 1:26-29 "For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: (27) But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; (28) And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: (29) That no flesh should glory in his presence."
Son of God came to
II. Second, Here is a sinner in desperate need of mercy.
[Luke 8:27-30] "And when he went forth to land, there met him out of the city a certain man, which had devils long time, and ware no clothes, neither abode in any house, but in the tombs.  When he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, and with a loud voice said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God most high? I beseech thee, torment me not.  (For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For oftentimes it had caught him: and he was kept bound with chains and in fetters; and he brake the bands, and was driven of the devil into the wilderness.)  And Jesus asked him, saying, What is thy name? And he said, Legion: because many devils were entered into him."
in his account, tells us that there were two mad, demon possessed Gadarenes who
met the Master on the shores of
A. 1st, This poor soul was totally possessed by hellish influence.
Satan and the legions of hell possessed his heart, his mind, his body, his very soul! I cannot imagine a more pathetic picture than the one drawn by the Spirit of God of this man. Mark tells us that he was possessed by “an unclean spirit.”
That is the condition of us all by nature. I know, this man was possessed of the devil; but the devil could never have possessed him had he not been unclean by nature. Even so, the wicked, who opposing God oppose themselves, are this day “taken captive by Satan at his will” (2 Tim. ).
Isaiah declares that we are all as an unclean thing. Our hearts are deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked. Out of our hearts come forth every abominable evil that exists in this world. Oh, if only we knew the evil of our hearts, the shocking horror of that wickedness that resides in us would prevent us from ever again saying, with regard to any vile act of a man, “How could a man do such a thing?”
B. 2nd, This poor wretch had been in this condition for a very long time.
We are not told how long he had been in such sad, sad shape, but only that he had “had devils a long time.” This, too, is true of fallen man. We have, since the fall of our father Adam, been under the influence of hell. “The wicked are estranged from the womb. They go astray, as soon as they are born, speaking lies.”
C. 3rd, He was naked.
He “ware no clothes.” I have no doubt that it is altogether proper to ascribe nudity and the propensity of men and women toward it to hellish influence; but there is much more here than that. This man was so far driven to madness that he made no effort at all to cover himself before others. There was no hypocritical show of moral or religious decency in him. He was full of hell and did not care who knew it.
D. 4th, This poor soul was lost, without a home, dwelling “in the tombs,” living among the dead.
Spiritually dead, he lived among the dead. Is that the case with you? I know it is; but do you? You who live without Christ live among the dead, for you are dead. This man was not dead physically; but he was dead spiritually. Therefore, he was most comfortable among the dead. That is where I was when the Lord found me; and that is where you are by nature.
Ephesians 2:1-4 "And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins: (2) Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: (3) Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. (4) But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us."
E. 5th, This poor soul was wild, mad, and uncontrollable.
We read in verse 30, -- “He was kept bound with chains and in fetters; and he broke the bonds.”
The fetters of society, social acceptance, peer approval, social advantage, family pressure, reputation, and concern for the opinions others, those things that bind most men and make them behave with an outward form of decency simply have no effect on some. Are you like this man? I was. They had no effect upon me.
Like the maniac of
Social fetters could not bind me; and the fetters and chains of religion were no more effectual. I knew something of the terror of God’s law. The wrath of God, the terrors of judgment, hell, and endless death tormented my soul, sometimes for months on end. Those terrors would sometimes appear effectual; but those fetters, too, were also easily cast off. The fear of hell never changes a sinner’s heart.
F. 6th, In a word, this poor wretch, in the totality of his miserable existence was “driven of the devil.”
No man could tame this madman. When society sees that chains and fetters cannot bind a man and make him better, it tries by refinement, education, reward, and gentle persuasion to tame him into moral respectability. The Lord Jesus does not bind or tame. He renews, regenerates, and breaks! And when he gets done, the broken sinner rejoices to be broken!
· Society tames men.
· Religion binds them.
· The Lord Jesus breaks them and sets them free!
G. 7th, When the Lord Jesus came on the scene, he found this man hell bent to his own destruction.
Mark tells us that he was "always, night and day, he was in the mountains, and in the tombs, crying, and cutting himself with stones.”
Imagine the terror that this man wreaked upon others, as they passed by this place, especially at night. Imagine yourself living near such a man. You would put iron bars around your windows and doors and sleep with a gun under your bed every night. Whenever you saw him coming down the street, you would nod politely to keep from incurring his fury; but you would hurry away and try every way possible to protect your family from his influence and his wickedness.
But, can you imagine what misery such a person is in himself. I know his misery is his own doing. I know his wickedness is inexcusable. But I also know the misery of his soul. I have been there among the tombs, moaning, groaning, crying, and cutting myself, always playing with death, yet always terrified of dying, despising loneliness and isolation, yet always doing that which of necessity brought me into greater loneliness and isolation.
It was just then, when he was at his wits’ end, reeling to and fro like a drunken man, that the Son of God stepped into his life, as it were, just in the nick of time!
[Ephesians 2:1-5] "And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins:  Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:  Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.  But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,  Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ. By grace ye are saved!"
III. Third, Here are three facts well known in hell.
[Luke 8:28] "When he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, and with a loud voice said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God most high? I beseech thee, torment me not."
[Luke 8:31] "And they besought him that he would not command them to go out into the deep."
You may try to pretend that these things are not so. You may try to escape them; but these three facts are known in hell. Sooner or later, you will face them.
A. The Man Jesus Christ is himself God the eternal Son.
B. He who is God is God Most High.
C. There is a day appointed when all the Lord’s enemies shall be cast into the bottomless pit, shut up forever in hell, where they can do no more harm.
Matthew tells us that these demon spirits cried, “Art thou come to torment us before the time?”
The word translated “deep” in Luke is the very same word translated “bottomless pit” in the Book of Revelation. It refers to the pit of hell.
IV. Fourth, Here is A Savior with omnipotent grace.
[Luke 8:29-33] "(For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For oftentimes it had caught him: and he was kept bound with chains and in fetters; and he brake the bands, and was driven of the devil into the wilderness.)  And Jesus asked him, saying, What is thy name? And he said, Legion: because many devils were entered into him.  And they besought him that he would not command them to go out into the deep.  And there was there an herd of many swine feeding on the mountain: and they besought him that he would suffer them to enter into them. And he suffered them.  Then went the devils out of the man, and entered into the swine: and the herd ran violently down a steep place into the lake, and were choked."
[John 17:1-2] "These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee:  As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him."
He who is our Savior is the omnipotent God, the God of omnipotent grace. Therefore, we are assured, “He is able to save unto the uttermost all them that come unto God by him.” He who commands the winds and the waves also commands the very demons of hell; and, like the wind and waves, they obey his voice!
Our Lord Jesus Christ is the absolute Monarch of the universe. These demons, a legion of them, were compelled to Christ’s feet like a whipped cur bows at its master’s feet. As they prayed for permission to enter into the herd of hogs, so they must receive permission from our Savior to do anything. Our Lord allowed the demons to enter and slaughter the herd of hogs with good reason. He wanted this poor Gadarene to know and remember what these demons of hell would have done to him, had it not been for his divine, saving intervention.
Let us never imagine that Satan and the demons of hell are rivals to God our Savior, or that they are out of control. Nothing could be further from the truth. Satan, and the demons of hell are the vassals of our Lord, doing nothing but that which he ordains and permits for the good of his people.
A. At the command of Christ, Satan and the legions of fallen angels were cast out of heaven.
B. By the power of his
accomplished redemption, Satan was bound at
C. At the command of our sovereign Savior, the fiend of hell is overthrown and cast out of the hearts of chosen, redeemed sinners.
Yes, Satan is a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. But all he can do against God’s elect is roar. He is our Savior’s lion, on his chain. His fangs and his claws have been permanently ripped out by our Savior. Yes, he is the tempter; but he cannot even tempt God’s servant (Job), without God’s permission. Yes, he is the accuser of the brethren; but the accuser has been forever cast out and silenced, silenced by the blood of the Crucified One!
V. Fifth, Here is a sinner saved by God’s almighty grace.
[Luke 8:34-36] "When they that fed them saw what was done, they fled, and went and told it in the city and in the country.  Then they went out to see what was done; and came to Jesus, and found the man, out of whom the devils were departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed, and in his right mind: and they were afraid.  They also which saw it told them by what means he that was possessed of the devils was healed."
What a change! It was a change everyone in town could see. This terror of a man had been born again.
A. He who had been possessed of the devil was now possessed by the Son of God.
B. He who was before uncontrollably wild and wicked, was sitting before his Master.
C. He who once roamed about naked, was clothed.
By nature, I was naked before God. Now I am clothed with the very righteousness of God in Christ. Like the prodigal, my Father has placed upon me…
· The Family Robe - The Righteousness of Christ!
· The Family Ring - The Ring of Everlasting Covenant Love!
· The Family Shoes - The Gospel of Peace!
· And He feeds me at the family buffet - The Sacrifice of Christ!
D. He who was before a madman was now in his right mind.
Someone accurately said, “Every man is out of his mind until he has the mind of Christ.”
E. Those who saw what had happened, but had not experienced it, were afraid.
When God saves a sinner, others who thought they were all right are terrified by it, especially if the saved man was once one of them! These poor souls were terrified in the presence of almighty mercy, omnipotent love, and saving grace. Why? Because they knew nothing about it. They still lived in bondage. The only difference between them and the demoniac was that they were held by fetters and chains, and tamed by society. They mistook their fetters for righteousness and their tameness for goodness.
F. “He that was possessed of the devils was healed.”
G. This poor, wild, mad man, this man who had no home, but dwelt among the dead, is now at home with the Son of God, “sitting at the feet of Jesus!”
· The Place of Faith
· The Place of Surrender
· The Place of Learning
· The Place of Love
· The Place of Worship
· The Place of Consecration
The Touch of the Master's Hand
“'Twas battered and scared, and the auctioneer
Thought it was scarcely worth while
To waste much time on the old violin,
But held it up with a smile.
"What am I bid, good folks," he cried,
"Who'll start the bidding for me?"
"A dollar, a dollar," who'll make it two?
"Two dollars, and who'll make it three?
"Three dollars, once; three dollars twice;
Going for three ..."But no,
From the room, far back, a grey-haired man
Came forward and picked up the bow;
Then wiping the dust from the old violin,
And tightening the loosened strings,
He played a melody, pure and sweet
As sweet as a caroling angel sings.
The music ceased, and the auctioneer,
With a voice that was quiet and low,
Said: "Now, what am I bid for this old violin?"
As he held it up with the bow.
"One thousand dollars, and who'll make it two?
Two thousand! And who'll make it three?
Three thousand, once; three thousand twice;
And going and gone," said he.
The people cheered, but some began to cry,
"We don’t quite understand.
"What changed the worth of the old violin?"
Quick came the reply --
"Twas the touch of a master's hand."
And many a man with a life out of tune,
Battered and scarred with sin,
Is auctioned cheap to the thoughtless crowd
Much like the old violin.
But the Master comes and the foolish crowd
Never can quite understand
The worth of a soul and the change that's wrought
By the touch of the Master's hand.”