Monday, March 25, 2013

A few unasked questions.

Jonathan and I didn't get to address all of our questions about Mark 5:1-20 Sunday. Here's a few more questions I didn't have time to get to:

  • Why did Jesus decide to boat across the lake, rather than walk around it, going from people to people without skipping anyone?
  • Why is the man referred to as having, in the singular, an "unclean spirit", when we later find out it's a plurality of demons?
  • Did the villagers refer to him as having an unclean spirit? Isn't a lack of cleanness a Jewish concern, relating to purity?
  • What did the demon-possessed man eat and drink to sustain himself (or his host body), since his own destruction seemed the goal?
  • Where did the people get the shackles and chains to bind him with? Why were those laying around?
  • When the person who brought the shackles and chains said, "Here, try these," did the others give him a funny look?
  • "No one had the strength to subdue him." (v4). Was this a contest? Were there bets?
  • Why did the demon-possessed man cut himself with stones, and what else might this behavior signify? Why not use the weapons (or even the busted chains) readily available from people not strong enough to resist him if he wanted them?
  • Why would a spirit that cuts himself with stones be concerned about being tormented?
  • Why does the demon(s) answer Jesus's questions, but not Jesus's command to come out of the man, and in what ways do I talk to Christ but refuse to listen to Christ?
  • Who counted the pigs? Did they ask the herdsman (v14) or did Matthew, the tax-collector/human-calculator, do a speed count?
  • Why didn't the pigs swim?
  • When in the water, did the herd of pigs become a school?
  • When the pigs died, did the demons?
  • Did the demons go into fish?
  • Does demon enhance or spoil the flavor of Tilapia?
  • When the man was healed, where did he get his clothes? What  beautiful human being failed to get credit for sharing their wardrobe with a former demoniac?
  • What significance is there to the former demoniac being sent out of the area by Jesus, and then Jesus himself being sent out as well?
  • Are asking Jesus into your heart and begging Jesus out of your village opposites?
  • What reasons are there for telling people throughout the gospels to not speak of the miracle they have experienced, but in this case the contrary is commanded? (This question was asked me after service by a gentleman who's name escapes me…Great question.)
  • How often does Jesus tell people they can't follow him (v18-19), and that the better ministry is in the sufficiency of them sharing their own limited experience with their friends?
  • Did the demoniac have former notoriety? Why did those he told marvel at his story unless they knew he'd been a little cuckoo lately, but before that healthy?
  • Was there ever any other evangelist/ambassador to this area- or was this man's "was blind, now I see" experience enough for all time?
  • What currently unrecognized traditions came from this man's testimony in the Decapolis? Has Christianity in the East, or in the West for that matter, inadvertently dismissed as "not us" or even "heresy" a tradition birthed out of this man obeying Christ to the letter?
  • The next section starts with Jesus and the disciples boating again…did they have to navigate through 2,000 pig corpses?
  • A chapter later Jesus walks on water; was this simply a balancing act on dead pigs?
  • How many times did Jesus's helping of one person (like the demoniac) hurt others (like the pig farmers)? Is there any such thing as helping everybody at once? Is "Good News" always, necessarily some sort of "bad news"?

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