Reaching out to Central New York in the name of Jesus Christ

A Word for Today

Weird But True

If you read the Gospel of Mark, chapter 5, you will come across one of the weirdest things I have ever read in the Bible:

Mark 5:7  What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of the most high God? I adjure thee by God, that thou torment me not.

The maniac we read about in Mark 5 asks Jesus not to torture him. What a strange request!

The Bible describes this desperate man as living with unbearable pain. He lives in total seclusion in caves filled with human bones. He cuts himself, cries out in anguish, and has been banished from all human kindness. Yet he tells Jesus — the one person who can end his suffering — not to torture him. Weird!

It may be weird, but it is also a common human response to the outstretched hand of the Savior. Isn’t the troubled man’s response repeated every time someone prefers his independence to the saving intervention of Jesus? “Leave me alone, Jesus. My life may be messed up, but at least it is mine.” “Get outta my life, God. I don’t want to be told what to do.” Telling God to leave us alone is crazy.

Thankfully Jesus does not take no for an answer. In the case of the maniac of Gadara, instead of kicking the man when he is down, Jesus persists in delivering him, so that famously, the man is found “clothed and in his right mind.”

Jesus won’t give up on you either. Don’t push Him away. His hand holds the healing touch. If you are lonely, trapped in a world of one, finding it impossible to view your life with one shred of faith’s optimism, Jesus offers health to you. Jesus is the answer if your life is out of control.

If you are hurting and alone, you may want to pray this way:

Oh, Jesus, I am ready to accept Your help. I am a prisoner in a place of death. I am alone and in pain. But I want to be made whole, and I trust that You know best. I will do whatever You want me to do to be healed.