Three of the Gospels tell the story of the Gadarene demoniac. Mark's is the most specific but all three mention the man's fierceness. (Mt. 8.28-34, Lk. 8.26-39)
"And they came over unto the other side of the sea, into the country of the Gad'arenes. And when he was come out of the ship, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit, who had his dwelling among the tombs; and no man could bind him, no, not with chains: because that he had been often bound with fetters and chains, and the chains had been plucked asunder by him, and the fetters broken in pieces: neither could any man tame him. And always, night and day, he was in the mountains, and in the tombs, crying, and cutting himself with stones."
He lived in the tombs so he was homeless, and further, being among the dead made him unclean in a most extreme way to the Jews. He was so strong he could break chains, and no man could subdue him. And his screaming could be heard from mountain to valley, so much so that no one would go that way. In other words, they would walk miles out of their way to avoid this guy.
People think demon-possession is passe. That it only happened in bible times. It is true, Jesus spent a lot of His ministry exorcising demons because there seemed to be so many then and not so many now. But just because the bible times ended does not mean the demons went away. It is hard to think of similar things happening in this sanitized, scientific, hands-off kind of age. But they do.
Satan hates Jesus just as much now as he did then. He hates the Jews just as much now as he did then. He hates the Christians just as much now as he did then. He is still killing, stealing, and destroying. (John 10:10)
If we came up against a demon-possession in these days, what would it look like? I would say that it'd have similar characteristics to what the bible described: unnatural, untameable strength, total disregard for their welfare and the welfare of others, screaming and crying, anger and violence.
Well, the following footage has all that and more. The rest of this blog entry discusses specific demon possession and its effects. It is disturbing and contains video and descriptions of recent demon-possession. Stop reading now if you want to avoid the graphic matter contained in this piece.
Of the footage you are about to see, the synopsis from Youtube says, "In 2008, BBC cameras filmed two Swedish sisters throwing themselves into traffic on the M6. When it was shown on BBC One, nearly 7 million viewers were glued to their screens, and millions more watched it later on YouTube. The footage was shocking. One previewer wrote "On no account miss this documentary. It opens with what is perhaps the most extraordinary footage I've seen on TV". But this amazing footage was only part of an even more incredible story, one which could not be told at the time for legal reasons. Now, two years later, this documentary reveals the full story of the hours just before the cameras captured that motorway footage, and the even more chilling story of what happened over next 72 hours, which left one of the sisters fleeing the scene of a crime, after she had stabbed a man through the chest. Those who were at the centre of this fascinating legal case, including the police and Crown prosecution service, reveal the complex issues involved in both bringing charges and taking this disturbing case to trial. A leading criminal psychiatrist, Dr. Nigel Eastman, explains the difficulties the judicial system has in achieving justice and deciding punishment when dealing with mental illness."
The following is part 1 of four parts. I watched (through my fingers) part one and part of the second. I warn you, the footage is disturbing. It is graphic. You are warned.
What happened is that the woman, Sabina Eriksson, was frenetically pacing alongside the M6 highway and when approached by police, hurled herself in front of a car. She was run over, but survived and leaped up and ran off to the other lanes to repeat her action. Her twin sister also ran out in front of traffic, she was hit and run over by a the equivalent of an eighteen wheeler, and was thrown like a rag doll. However, both women survived. Police in the video describe the unlikelihood of this happening, ever. Ursula was incapacitated but after regaining consciousness, screamed at the medics attending her and had to be held down. Sabina meanwhile was grabbed on the other side of the roadway but could not be subdued. Several police officers attempted to get her under control, and it was only when several passers by also aided the police that she was subdued and cuffed. It took 6 men to handcuff one small woman.
A friend of the man that she later killed was interviewed in a newspaper article. He said, "When I saw the footage on the internet of her running out in the road it made me feel sick. She looked possessed in that film. I wanted answers from the court case, I wanted to know why she did what she did but I don't think anyone will ever know."
'Heard voices' -- "Psychiatrists told Luton Crown Court that the mother-of-two was suffering from either induced delusional disorder or acute polymorphic disorder, which were both rare. Dr Carol McDaniel said: "Sabina said she heard voices but could not interpret what they were saying."
The incident occurred in 2008, and after a two-year legal wrangle, in 2010 more information has started to come out. I note that the officials state she has turned to Christianity. This is a good thing. Demon possession would look very much like what happened on the motorway and in the days afterward, with Sabina killing Glenn Hollingshead and stabbing of the passerby who came to help.
In other strange news, another graphic incident happened this week. This one was in Italy, during a Catholic church service. A man worshiping during the service heard a voice and
graphic- stop reading- warning of graphic incident ahead--
pulled both his eyeballs out. According to Italian media, a mentally ill British man literally pulled both his eyes out during a church service. The man's mother, who was with him when it happened, initially thought he had fallen and banged his head, because of the blood. When parishioners discovered what he had done, many of them fainted or fell ill themselves upon seeing the ghastly sight.
Ursula and Sabina throwing themselves in front of vehicles moving at high speed, a man suddenly plucking out his own eyes...this is what demon possession looks like. During the Tribulation, there will be a lot more if it. There will be things like this that people don't understand, or are beyond the realm of comprehension.
One thing that is also beyond comprehension but is something to seek and not avoid is Jesus' love. The Gadarene demoniac saw Jesus and recognized him, falling down to worship him. Jesus has power over the demons. Jesus' power is unlimited, omniscient and powerful. With all that, He loves us gently and patiently. No sin is too big for Him to forgive. No deed is too bad for Him to wipe away. He seeks you. He sent the Holy Spirit to draw you to Him! He wants you. Please enfold yourself in the loving arms of Jesus today. Otherwise, you leave yourself open to the same demonic possession and harassment the people in this article had left themselves exposed to. And you really don't want to be left open to be satan's plaything, not when you can be Jesus' bride!
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