When he arrived at the other side in the region of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men coming from the tombs met him. They were so violent that no one could pass that way. What do you want with us, Son of God? they shouted. Have you come here to torture us before the appointed time?
Some distance from them a large herd of pigs was feeding. The demons begged Jesus, If you drive us out, send us into the herd of pigs.
He said to them, Go! So they came out and went into the pigs, and the whole herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and died in the water. Those tending the pigs ran off, went into the town and reported all this, including what had happened to the demon-possessed men. Then the whole town went out to meet Jesus. And when they saw him, they pleaded with him to leave their region.
What is regarded as one of the most demonized men in the New Testament, the “Gaderene Demoniac”, was filled with a thousand demons. While one Gospel records only one man, there is no contradiction, as Matthew records both, and the other only records the one with the most dealing. Whether this man was actually the most demonized man in the New Testament is also hypothesis, as the number of demons in various people who were never converted is conjecture. Also of note is that the phrase “demon-possessed” is a most unfortunate rendition of the single-word in the Greek, “daimonizomai”, meaning “demonized” or “under the influence of a demon”. The English translation has the connotation of ownership in our version, which is not a part of the Greek whatsoever. No matter how “daimonizomai” someone is, it is never a Biblical term to call them possessed or owned by a demon. Even this man, in other accounts, fell at Jesus’ feet and worshipped, not the demons. As afflicted, tormented, and affected as he was, He still had a sense of the truth.
Yet, for all that was on Him, for the legion of demons that had entered the man, they all left with a single word. ”Go!”.