Yeshua Heals the Gadarene Demoniac

Matthew 8:28–34 (also Mark 4:35–5:20 and Luke 8:26–39),


“And when [Yeshua] had come to the other side [of the Sea of Galilee] into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with demons [or, a man with an unclean spirit, Mark 5:2], coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way [or, no man could tame him, Mark 5:4]. And, behold, they cried out, saying, ‘What have we to do with you, Yeshua, Son of Elohim? Have you come here to torment us before the time?’ And there was a good way off from them an herd of many swine feeding. So the demons besought him, saying, ‘If you cast us out, allow us to go away into the herd of swine.’ And he said unto them, ‘Go [or, come out of the man, unclean spirit, Mark 5:8].’ And when they were come out, they went into the herd of swine, and, behold, the whole herd of swine [and, they were about two thousand, Mark 5:13] ran violently down a steep place into the sea, and perished in the waters. And they that kept them fled, and went their ways into the city, and told every thing, and what was befallen to the possessed of the demons. And, behold, the whole city came out to meet Yeshua, and when they saw him, they besought him that he would depart out of their coasts.” Mark’s account adds the following (Mark 5:15–20): “And they come to Yeshua and stared at him that had been possessed by the legion of demons, sitting, and clothed, and in his right mind and they were afraid. And they that saw it told them how it befell to him that was possessed with the demons, and also concerning the swine. And they began to beg him to depart out of their coasts. And when he was come into the ship, he that had been possessed with the devil begged him that he might be with him. Howbeit Yeshua would not allow it, but said unto him, ‘Go home to your friends, and tell them how great things the Master has done for you, and has had compassion on you.’ And he departed, and began to preach [proclaim] in Decapolis the great things Yeshua had done for him and all men did marvel.”

Prophetic Points to Analyze:

  • Mark 4:37, a great storm
  • Mark 4:38, asleep on a pillow
  • Matthew 28, the other side
  • Matthew 28, two possessed with demons
  • Matthew 28, coming out of the tombs
  • Matthew 28, no man could tame him
  • Matthew 30, swine
  • Mark 5:13, two thousand
  • Matthew 32, perished in the waters
  • Matthew 34, coasts
  • Mark 5:20, Decapolis

In this passage, we find more symbolic and prophetic language pertaining to the exile and future redemption of lost, scattered and spiritually apostate Israel. Here Yeshua had crossed to the other side of the Sea of Galilee into the region of the Gergesenes—a name which is a variant of Gadarenes and is plural for the word Gadara. This city was located on the east side of the Jordan River six miles southeast of the Sea of Galilee, and was one of the cities of the Roman province of Decapolis (i.e., “ten cities”). This was in the ancient territory of the tribe of Gad (one of the ten tribes of the Northern Kingdom or house of Israel).

The sea over which Yeshua crossed is a scriptural prophetic metaphor for the sea of humanity in general (e.g., see Dan 7:3). In Mark’s account, we learn that the sea was stormy at the time of Yeshua’s crossing (Mark 4:35–41). This is a prophetic picture of political turmoil and upheaval among the governments and peoples of the earth. Through this storm, Yeshua had been asleep with his disciples in the safety of the boat riding atop of the sea. This is a picture of YHVH’s preserving his saints through the horrendous times the Scriptures call the day of YHVH’s wrath (or the wrath of Elohim, i.e., the seven last plagues or bowl judgments of the Book of Revelation) during which time YHVH will pour out his wrath and judgment upon the unregenerate inhabitants of the earth.

A similar scenario occurred in Noah’s day. Noah and his family rode safely over the top of the waves, which were filled with drowned humanity. Noah was spared from the wrath of Elohim against a wicked and unrepentant generation. Similarly, the end-time saints of YHVH will not have to endure his final wrath as long as they are in the same spiritual boat as Yeshua (1 Thess 1:10 and 5:9), although they will go through the great tribulation (see Matt 24:21 cp. 29ff and Rev 11:14–18). Yeshua prophesied that the events of Noah’s day would repeat themselves in the end times:

But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of Man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of Man be. (Matt 24:37–39)

Continuing with our analysis of Yeshua’s encounter with the demoniac in the region of Gadara, we see that he traveled eastward to reach out to a man possessed by a legion of demons, who was manifesting a spirit of death and super human strength. Yeshua’s presence in the Roman province called Decapolis or “Ten Cities” is a prophetic picture of his reaching out to the ten tribes of Israel who had been taken captive (in approximately 723 b.c.) where they were deported eastward out of the land of Israel.

While in captivity, they where assimilated into the heathen cultures of their captor nation (Assyria), and from there they were eventually scattered near and far, even to the extreme coasts and borders of planet earth. Through their long captivity they had lost their identity and their right (spiritual) mind, of whom the demoniac in the Gospel account is a prophetic foreshadow. Through the plight of their exile, they became dead to their Hebrew roots and became bound by the chains of death, heathenism and demonism. But Yeshua came to set these captives free and to liberate them from demonic influences (Isa 61:1–3 and Luke 4:16–21). The Gadarene demoniac represents a wayward, backslid, bound and captive house of Israel being brought out of spiritual captivity (Ezek 16:53).

There was even a herd of swine near this demoniac who was a prophetic picture of the house of Israel. The demons knew who Yeshua was, feared him, and recognized his power and authority over them. They begged to be cast into the heard of swine (unclean creatures that the Torah forbids the righteous to eat).

YHVH calls eating swine’s flesh an abominable practice (Isa 65:4 and 66:17), and in the surrounding passages of these verses he rebukes his backslid people for involving themselves in this and other defiling pagan practices. Yet out of this spiritual pigsty, YHVH prophesies that he will bring forth an elect or chosen seed to his set-apart mountain (Mount Zion in Jerusalem) who will walk with him in righteousness (Isa 65:9ff). Then in Isaiah 65:17, YHVH speaks of creating a new heaven and a new earth where his elect or chosen ones shall be abundantly blessed. The same prophecy continues in chapter sixty-six. There, YHVH prophesies that though the righteous, which have been saved out of paganism and YHVH’s judgment (65:8–9), have been rejected or cast out by their brethren, they will rejoice in YHVH’s appearance (66:5). YHVH goes on to say that his people, who will be coming out of the (Gentile) nations, will be like a nation reborn in a day (verses 7–12), while those who continue in their idolatrous, swine-eating, abominable heathen ways will be consumed by the judgments of YHVH (verses 15–17). Out of that time of judgment and turmoil, the exiled children of Israel will return to YHVH’s set-apart (kodesh) mountain in Jerusalem (verse 20).

The Gadarene demoniac being set free, restored to his right mind and wearing clothing (covering the shame of his nakedness [cp. Rev 3:18]) is a picture of the restoration of YHVH’s people to their former status of children of Israel. Before being set free “no man could tame” him. He truly was a wild man, or as Paul termed it in Romans 11:13–24, in reference to the Gentiles whom he equates with the house of Ephraim (in Rom 9:25ff as per the prophecies of Hosea), “a wild olive branch.”

The demoniac living among the swine is a prophetic picture of Ephraim’s wild, beastly, apostate and worldly ways and appetites. Later in this book, we will analyze the Parable of the Prodigal Son who once ate among the swine (Luke 15:15), which is a prophetic picture of the same thing.

In a similar vein, the reader may recall Peter’s vision of the sheet descending from heaven containing the unclean animals or beasts (Acts 10:12), followed by YHVH’s invitation for him to no longer view the Gentiles as unclean, but to reach out to them with the message of the gospel (Acts 10:10–43).

There are two other points to consider in our passage of Yeshua in Gadara. First, Matthew’s account states that there were two demoniacs while Mark’s account states that there was one. Ignoring the seeming discrepancy in the accounts, let us momentarily focus on one versus two demoniacs. Israel was one nation comprised of two houses: the house of Israel or Ephraim (the Northern Kingdom) and the house of Judah (or Southern Kingdom). What we see here is a prophetic picture of one nation, but with two personalities (i.e., a split personality, if you will). In Mark’s account, Yeshua heals the man who then returns to his right mind and begins to preach the gospel in Decapolis. This is a prophetic picture of what Yeshua’s saints will be doing during the last moments of the final redemption, which is to occur at the end of the age prior to and at the coming of Messiah as well as into the Millennium. During this glorious time, several things will occur including the culmination of the regathering of the exiles of both houses of Israel, the resurrection of the righteous dead, and the establishment of the kingdom of Messiah upon this earth, known as the Messianic Era (or Millennium), which will last for 1000 years. During this time, the Torah will be taught to all nations.

Who will be teaching Torah to the nations during this time? In ancient Israel, it was the kings’ and priests’ responsibility to lead and teach the people according to the Torah. Likewise, those saints who have been grafted into the olive tree of Israel (Rom 11), who are spiritual descendants of Abraham, who are neither Greek nor Jew, but are the one new man in Messiah Yeshua (Eph 2:11–19), who have the faith of Yeshua and keep his Torah commandments (Rev 12:14; 14:17), and who will be the kings and priest in the Millennium— it is they who will be teaching Torah to the inhabitants of the world (Rev 1:6; 5:10; 20:6). Yeshua healing the (two) demoniac(s) is a picture of Yeshua and his Torah-keeping kingly and priestly saints ministering to the formerly lost and scattered Israelites who, along with their Gentile companions (Ezek 37:16), will be returning to their spiritual roots.

Finally, there were two thousand demon-possessed pigs that ran headlong into the sea and were drowned. It has been nearly two thousand years since the Christians have been feasting on literal swine meat or ham at their Easter and Christmas celebrations and at other times, which is an abomination in the eyes of YHVH. They have also been worshipping on the venerable day of the sun codified as church law by the pagan Roman emperor Constantine in the fourth century, instead of on the seventh day Sabbath as the Word of Elohim commands. They have been celebrating Easter, named after the Babylonian sex goddess, Ishtar, and have been celebrating the supposed birth of Yeshua on December 25, which is, in reality, the day the pagans called Saturnalia in honor of the Roman sun deity. More recently, Christians have added the Christmas tree into this celebration, a heathen practice YHVH condemns and forbids his people from doing (Jer 10:1–5).

In the account of the Gadarene demoniac, it could be reasoned that the two thousand demon-possessed pigs plunging to their death in the sea allegorically represents 2000 years of Babylonian-based unscriptural traditions in the Christian church that will soon come to an end as Yeshua prepares for himself a spotless bride who walks in righteousness, not paganism.

Prophetically speaking, at the end of the age prior to the return of Yeshua, Christians will have to choose to come out of religious Babylon with all of its heathenism, or face the judgments that will befall that wicked counterfeit religious system (Rev 18:4). Those who refuse to hear the pleading of their Heavenly Father to shake loose of the demon ties of death that bind them will face the wrath of Elohim, to be sure.

What You Can Do

In these last days, YHVH is calling his people out of pagan practices and traditions that are rooted in the doctrines of demons. We must learn to hear the voice of YHVH, and no matter the cost, we must come out of spiritual Babylon.

If we are to reach out to the lost sheep of Israel, we ourselves must be free of all foreign religious entanglements that are contrary to the Torah and the rest of the Word of Elohim. Pray that YHVH will help us to clearly see the sin or leaven of Egypt (and Babylon) that still exists in our lives, and that we will have the honesty, boldness and humility to identify it, repent of it, and then to forsake it completely.


1 thought on “Yeshua Heals the Gadarene Demoniac

  1. Great teaching! Wow……I’ve always known there was so much more to this passage then meets the eye, but I never saw it until you explained it. It filled me with hope, and strengthened my faith in a continually darkening world. Thank you, Natan! Blessings to you.

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