Jesus told him to go home.
As I was titling this post, I immediately thought of the movie, "The Incredibles". In the beginning of the film, there is a boy that really wants to help Mr. Incredible do his job, yet he simply keeps getting in the way. This boy is relentless and Mr. Incredible continues to tell him, "Go home buddy, I work alone." If you've seen this film, you know that this begins the whole entire plot of the movie; that boy's life is forever changed after that final rejection when Mr. Incredible tells him to go home because he works alone.
In Mark chapter 5, we see a similar line in verse 19 where Jesus tells a man that he has just healed from demon possession to go home. Although, this "go home" is radically different the the "go home" that Mr. Incredible tells to buddy, and praise God that it is. The story in Mark 5 is about a man who has a legion of demons inside him. This man is unable to be bound by any chains, shackles, or irons. It is said that this man lived in the tombs and the hills and would cut himself with stones, he was afflicted and isolated. When Jesus approaches this man, the demons know who Jesus is and are terrified so much so that they ask to be put into the herd of pigs. Then, Jesus casts the demons into the pigs, they run off the cliff into the water and drown. Everyone who sees this event is afraid and ask Jesus to leave. This is basically the plot-line yet at the very end, the man whom Jesus had healed begs Jesus to let him go with them but Jesus turns and says "go home". Thanks goodness this is not all he says to the man.
There are so many things that we could dialogue about in this passage like: Jesus power over demons, the demons fearing Jesus, Jesus power scaring a village, etc. Yet, I want us to notice this, after the man begs Jesus to let him go with them, in Mark 5:19 the Bible says, "Jesus did not let him, but said, 'Go home to your own people and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you'." This is incredible, see, the whole village is satisfied because Jesus left but he has just left that village with a man that has been transformed by the power of God. It says that as the man began to tell people in the Decapolis, the people were amazed! The testimony of God's power told by a healed man was able to amaze all the people. Jesus' "go home" is very different than Mr.Incredible's because he never leaves us empty-handed, rather he sends us instead of leaves us, and sends us with the power of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus sends this man to tell all the people what great things God has done for him and the mercy God has had on him. Jesus does not work alone, rather he calls you and I to share what great things God has done for us and what great mercy God has had on us. Being saved from sin and healed by Jesus means being sent out to proclaim the mighty deeds of God. Being saved from sin and healed by Jesus means proclaims the good news of God's great grace. Paul says in Acts 20:24, "However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me - the task of testifying to the good news of God's grace." The man who had been healed by Jesus was commissioned to do one thing, the same thing that you and I are commissioned to do, to tell everyone what great things God has done for you and what great mercy God has had one you. I am so thankful that Jesus does not simply tell us "go home" because he does not want us, but he says "go home to your own people" because we are sent with a mission to share what Jesus has done in our lives. "Taste and see that the Lord is good;" (Psalm 34:8a).
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Just a guy trying to share the gospel and love people well. (B.A. Asbury University;