Sitting at the Feet of Jesus
A Surprising Sight to See
"Then people came out to see what had happened, and when they came to Jesus, they found the man from whom the demons had gone sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind. And they were afraid." Luke 8:35
Luke 8:35 has always been a favorite passage. There is something strikingly beautiful about the image of a man, formally possessed by demons, sitting at the feet of Jesus. Luke goes on to say that the people saw the man "clothed and in his right mind."
Healing is beautiful. It is especially beautiful when the individual has suffered for so long. Luke tells his readers that this man wandered in the graveyards often unclothed. Imagine the sad life of this unnamed man. I can only think of the mentally ill people in my town or the mentally ill people in all towns that wander the streets. Looking at these individuals, you can see that they are often haunted by some unknown spirit. The average person can not see this spirit; but, to the individual, it is always there whispering utterances that only the suffering individual can hear.
I also think of the mentally ill that have become the source of jokes. The mentally ill individuals that have been given cruel nicknames by a society that refuses to understand the nature of mental illness. I imagine that demon-possessed man was often treated in the same fashion by the Gerasenes. Instead of compassion, the Gerasene demonic was viewed as a threat. People may have run away in fear. It must have been a sad life for the Gerasene demonic.
Whenever I hear this passage preached, the emphasis always seems to be placed on the demon, Legion, and his interaction with Christ. The power of Christ over the demon and the acknowledgement from the demon that Christ is the Son of God are extremely important to understanding the man that we call Jesus. However, we must not forget the man that was healed. After all, Jesus certainly did not forget him, and that is why we find the man sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind.
What happens next is interesting. When people find the man sitting at the feet of Jesus, these people are afraid. Why were they afraid? Were they afraid of Christ, the man, or the power of Christ to change this man?
Today, I think we are still afraid to see who may be sitting at the feet of Jesus. Think of the most evil person in history and imagine that person sitting at the feet of Jesus. If you saw a condemned killer sitting at the feet of Christ, would you be afraid? Would you believe that Christ healed this man or woman? Would you be angry to see someone so undeserving sitting near our Lord?
We should never be afraid to see people sitting at the feet of Christ. Christ died for each person. Therefore, we should remember that every person has his or her place at Jesus' feet. After all, someone may be surprised to see you "sitting at the feet of Jesus."