The demons want to be pigs (Mt 8:30-8:31)

“Now a large herd

Of swine

Was feeding

At some distance

From them.

The demons begged him.

‘If you cast us out,

Send us

Into the herd

Of swine.’”


ἦν δὲ μακρὰν ἀπ’ αὐτῶν ἀγέλη χοίρων πολλῶν βοσκομένη.

οἱ δὲ δαίμονες παρεκάλουν αὐτὸν λέγοντες Εἰ ἐκβάλλεις ἡμᾶς, ἀπόστειλον ἡμᾶς εἰς τὴν ἀγέλην τῶν χοίρων.


All three synoptic gospels, Mark, chapter 5:12 and Luke, chapter 8:32, and Matthew here, have these demoniacs ask to be sent into the herd of pigs nearby, with slight nuances in each story.  This large herd of pigs (ἀγέλη χοίρων πολλῶν) was feeding or in a pasture (βοσκομένη) at some distance away from them (ἦν δὲ μακρὰν ἀπ’ αὐτῶν), since this was gentile or a Greek area that was not Jewish.  Then the demoniacs begged Jesus (οἱ δὲ δαίμονες παρεκάλουν αὐτὸν λέγοντες), if he was going to cast them out (Εἰ ἐκβάλλεις ἡμᾶς), to send them into these pigs (ἀπόστειλον ἡμᾶς εἰς τὴν ἀγέλην τῶν χοίρων).  It seems like these evil spirits knew that they belonged in the unclean pigs or swine.

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