Am I remembering to share my testimony and faith in God with others to bring God glory?
1 They went across the lake to the region of the Gerasenes. 2 When Jesus got out of the boat, a man with an evil spirit came from the tombs to meet him. 3 This man lived in the tombs, and no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain. 4 For he had often been chained hand and foot, but he tore the chains apart and broke the irons on his feet. No one was strong enough to subdue him. 5 Night and day among the tombs and in the hills he would cry out and cut himself with stones. 6 When he saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and fell on his knees in front of him. 7 He shouted at the top of his voice, "What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? Swear to God that you won't torture me!" 8 For Jesus had said to him, "Come out of this man, you evil spirit!" 9 Then Jesus asked him, "What is your name?" "My name is Legion," he replied, "for we are many." 10 And he begged Jesus again and again not to send them out of the area. 11 A large herd of pigs was feeding on the nearby hillside. 12 The demons begged Jesus, "Send us among the pigs; allow us to go into them." 13 He gave them permission, and the evil spirits came out and went into the pigs. The herd, about two thousand in number, rushed down the steep bank into the lake and were drowned. 14 Those tending the pigs ran off and reported this in the town and countryside, and the people went out to see what had happened. 15 When they came to Jesus, they saw the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons, sitting there, dressed and in his right mind; and they were afraid. 16 Those who had seen it told the people what had happened to the demon-possessed man—and told about the pigs as well. 17 Then the people began to plead with Jesus to leave their region. 18 As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been demon-possessed begged to go with him. 19 Jesus did not let him, but said, "Go home to your family and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you." - Mark 1:1-19
The implications of this teaching are quite obvious; tell others what God has done for you, so I want to point out another not so obvious principle here. I’ve heard pastors say, “God will NEVER ask you to do anything that contradicts His written word.” And most of the time they are right, especially when a man comes up and says “God told me I could leave my wife for my new girlfriend.” However, there are times when His personal will for you will seemingly “contradict” other Scriptures.
Jesus’ command in v.19 “contradicts” His many other commands to follow Him, especially John 12:26. When I first started telling my story, I had some people say, “God would never ask you to move away from your children, or put you in a situation where you couldn’t provide for them.” I realize they have not read Mark 10:28-30. Walking with God is not about obeying Scripture like a punch list, void of God’s personal direction. This is why we must learn to hear God personally, rather than trying to apply a single scripture to all people and situations in our life. Imagine you read 1 Pet 4:10 and set off eager to serve, but then God tells you to wait. Do you see how that could be seen as Him “contradicting” His word?
Abraham being asked to sacrifice his son Isaac, was a contradiction of Gen 9:6. The disciple being told to the let the dead bury the dead (Mat 8:22) contradicts the 5th Commandment (Mat 15:4-6). Paul being told not to go to Asia (Acts 16:6) was a contradiction of Mat 28:19. Me being asked to walk away from my secular work and not being able to provide child support for my children for a long time, seems to completely contradict 1 Tim 5:8 (You should know God never allowed my children to be without during this time of my testing). But actually, I was obeying God’s direction to trust Him and wait for Him to act in my behalf (Isa 64:4).
Many times what God asks us to do, makes no sense and it may even seem to contradict other Scriptures. Depend on His Spirit to guide you, and do whatever He tells you to do (Gen 6:22, John 2:5)