And when he was come into the ship, he that had been possessed with the devil prayed him that he might be with him.…
It was a natural prayer of gratitude and sweetness. Why, when Christ giants the bad prayer of the people, does He deny the good prayer of the restored sufferer?
I. MERCY TO THE MAN HIMSELF.
1. To teach him to walk by faith, not by sight.
2. To leave his fears of a return of his affliction unsanctioned.
3. To indicate that Christ's work was perfect, not in danger of relapse.
4. To suggest that a distant Christ, if trusted, is as strong to save as a Christ who is nigh at hand.
II. MERCY TO THE GERGESENES. The presence of the Lord oppressed them. The presence of a disciple among them was
(1) a link to Him, and
(2) a testimony of Him. So the man is left, a living gospel, seeing whom, others may reflect, repent, and ultimately believe.
III. MERCY TO THE FAMILY OF THE RESTORED MAN. His family had suffered much pain, and probably poverty; let them have the pleasure of seeing his health and peace, and the advantage of his care. For wife and children's comfort he should return. How thoughtful is Christ of our best interests, even when He is crossing our wishes! How merciful in leaving an evangelist with those on whom some would have called down fire from heaven!
Parallel VersesKJV: And when he was come into the ship, he that had been possessed with the devil prayed him that he might be with him.