Luke uniquely said that there was a woman (καὶ ἰδοὺ γυνὴ) with a spirit that had crippled her (ἔχουσα ἀσθενείας) for 18 years (ἔτη δέκα οκτώ). She was bent over (καὶ ἦν συνκύπτουσα). This is the only appearance of the word συνκύπτουσα in the biblical literature, since it means bent forward, or doubled up. She was unable to stand up straight or lift herself to her full height (αὶ μὴ δυναμένη ἀνακύψαι εἰς τὸ παντελές). No one else had this story about the crippled lady, who for 18 years was possessed by some evil spirit that caused her problem. Illness and the role of evil spirits was always connected. Due to some evil spirit, she could not stand up straight. Do you know anyone who is bent over?
Luke said that, a spirit seized this young boy (καὶ ἰδοὺ πνεῦμα λαμβάνει αὐτόν). All at once (καὶ ἐξαίφνης), he shrieked or cried out (κράζει). This evil spirit convulsed him (καὶ σπαράσσει αὐτὸν) until he was foaming (μετὰ ἀφροῦ,). It bruised him (συντρῖβον αὐτόν), so that it would scarcely leave him alone (καὶ μόλις ἀποχωρεῖ ἀπ’ αὐτοῦ). This story of the man with the incurable epileptic son can be found in all 3 synoptic gospels, Matthew, chapter 17:15, Mark, chapter 9:18, and here in Luke, but there are differences in all 3 accounts. Apparently, this man’s son was an epileptic, possessed by the devil. This description of the young man’s suffering in Mark and Luke differed from Matthew, who had the child suffer very badly, falling into fire and water. However, Mark had even a more descriptive narrative of what was happening to this young man. He said that whenever the spirit seized him, it dashed or threw him down. This young boy would foam at the mouth. He would grind or gnash his teeth. He would become rigid as he was wasting or withering away. This sounded worse than Luke. Have you ever seen a person in an epileptic seizure?
Luke said that just then a man from the crowd shouted out (ἰδοὺ ἀνὴρ ἀπὸ τοῦ ὄχλου ἐβόησεν λέγων) “Teacher (Διδάσκαλε)!” He begged Jesus to look at his son (δέομαί σου ἐπιβλέψαι ἐπὶ τὸν υἱόν μου) who was his only child (ὅτι μονογενής μοί ἐστιν). Jesus and Luke had an affection for only children. This story of the man with the incurable son can be found in all 3 synoptic gospels, Matthew, chapter 17:15, Mark, chapter 9:17-18, and here in Luke, but there are minor differences in all 3 accounts. Mark said that it was someone from the crowd who spoke to Jesus, not a kneeling man as in Matthew. This man addressed Jesus as “Teacher (Διδάσκαλε),” like Luke, and not as “Lord (Κύριε)” as in Matthew. He had brought his son to Jesus because his son had a spirit that made him unable to speak. He was not immediately identified as an epileptic, but as a mute person. Matthew said that a man approached Jesus and knelt before him. Only Matthew has this man kneel in front of Jesus. Thus, this was a kneeling man, not someone from the crowd yelling out to Jesus. This man addressed Jesus as the Lord (Κύριε). He wanted Jesus to have mercy on his son, who was an epileptic, not mute. Epileptics were often considered to be possessed by the devil. Even today, we are still unsure of the exact cause of epilepsy seizures. This man’s son suffered very badly. He often fell into a fire and into water. Have you ever known a chronically sick child?
Luke said that the man, from whom the demons had gone out (ὁ ἀνὴρ ἀφ’ οὗ ἐξεληλύθει τὰ δαιμόνια), begged Jesus (ἐδεῖτο δὲ αὐτοῦ) that he might be with him (εἶναι σὺν αὐτῷ). However, |Jesus sent him away (ἀπέλυσεν δὲ αὐτὸν λέγων). There is something similar in Mark, chapter 5:38, while there is nothing like this in Matthew. Mark said that as Jesus was getting into his boat, the man, who had been possessed by demons begged or entreated Jesus to let him go with him. This formerly possessed man wanted to be a follower of Jesus, which seems like a reasonable request. However, Mark said that Jesus refused this former demoniac. Do you think that Jesus would refuse some people from being his follower?
Luke said that those who had seen (οἱ ἰδόντες) what happened told them (ἀπήγγειλαν δὲ αὐτοῖς) how the one who had been possessed by demons (ὁ δαιμονισθεί) had been healed (πῶς ἐσώθη). There was something similar in Mark, chapter 5:16, while there is nothing like this in Matthew. Mark said that those who had seen what had happened to this demoniac told everyone. They reported, described, or related it to other people how the pigs ran into the sea. There was nothing secret about this transfer of evil spirits from a human to a herd of pigs. What do you think about pigs?
Luke said that the people went out to see (ἐξῆλθον δὲ ἰδεῖν) what had happened (τὸ γεγονὸς). When they came to Jesus (καὶ ἦλθον πρὸς τὸν Ἰησοῦν), they found the man (καὶ εὗρον τὸν ἄνθρωπον), from whom all the demons had gone (ἀφ’ οὗ τὰ δαιμόνια ἐξῆλθεν). He was sitting (καθήμενον) at the feet of Jesus (παρὰ τοὺς πόδας τοῦ Ἰησοῦ), as if he were a disciple of Jesus. He was clothed (ἱματισμένον) and in his right mind (καὶ σωφρονοῦντα). They were afraid (καὶ ἐφοβήθησαν). There is something similar in Mark, chapter 5:15, while there is nothing like this in Matthew. Mark said that the people came to Jesus. They saw the demoniac sitting there clothed, and in his right mind or sober minded. This was the very same violent man, whom the legion or thousands of evil spirits had possessed. However, the people were afraid, because of all that happened. Do some stories make you afraid of God?
Luke said that as the sun was setting (Δύνοντος δὲ τοῦ ἡλίου), all those who had any person who was sick with various kinds of diseases (ἅπαντες ὅσοι εἶχον ἀσθενοῦντας νόσοις ποικίλαις) brought them to Jesus. (ἤγαγον αὐτοὺς πρὸς αὐτόν). This would not have been the Sabbath, because the sun had set on the Sabbath. Jesus laid his hands on each of them (ὁ δὲ ἑνὶ ἑκάστῳ αὐτῶν τὰς χεῖρας ἐπιτιθεὶς) and so he cured them (ἐθεράπευεν αὐτούς). Luke concentrated on the sick people, emphasized healing. There are similar generic statements about healing sick and chasing out demons in Mark, chapter 1:32-33, and Matthew, chapter 8:16. Matthew emphasized the casting out of demons. Jesus cast out these demons with merely a word. At the same time, he also healed all the sick people around there, without indicating how this was done. Apparently, during biblical times, there were a lot of people who were possessed by the devil. Mark was the only one to mention that the whole city gathered at his door. Mark said that they brought to him all who had a sickness or were possessed with demons. Jesus was also a daring faith healer, since many saw the connection between both sickness and demonic evil spirit possession.
The story of the man with the incurable son can be found in all 3 synoptic gospels, Matthew, chapter 17:15, Luke, chapter 9:39, and here in Mark, but there are minor differences in all 3 accounts. Apparently, this son was an epileptic, who was often considered to be possessed by the devil. Even today, we are still unsure of the exact cause of epilepsy seizures. This description of the young man’s suffering differed from Matthew who had the child suffer very badly, falling into fire and water. Luke had a description similar to Mark. However, this was a very descriptive narrative of what was happening to this young man. Mark said that whenever the spirit seized him (καὶ ὅπου ἐὰν αὐτὸν καταλάβῃ), it dashed or threw him down (ῥήσσει αὐτόν). This young boy would foam (καὶ ἀφρίζει) at the mouth. He would grind or gnash his teeth (αὶ τρίζει τοὺς ὀδόντας). He would become rigid as he was wasting or withering away (καὶ ξηραίνεται).
Matthew, chapter 15:22, has something similar. This woman was a gentile Canaanite woman (ἡ δὲ γυνὴ ἦν Ἑλληνίς), of Syrophoenician origin (Συροφοινίκισσα τῷ γένει), that is in the area of Syria and Phoenicia. Matthew never mentioned the area she was from. The Canaanites, who worshiped Baal, were still the enemies of the Jewish people. This Canaanite woman kept begging Jesus (καὶ ἠρώτα αὐτὸν) to cast out the demon from her daughter (ἵνα τὸ δαιμόνιον ἐκβάλῃ ἐκ τῆς θυγατρὸς αὐτῆς), since her daughter was possessed by an evil spirit.
There is something similar in Luke, chapter 8:38, while there is nothing like this in Matthew. Mark said that as Jesus was getting into the boat (καὶ ἐμβαίνοντος αὐτοῦ εἰς τὸ πλοῖον), the man, who had been possessed by demons (ὁ δαιμονισθεὶς) begged or entreated Jesus (παρεκάλει αὐτὸν) to let him go with him (ἵνα μετ’ αὐτοῦ ᾖ). This formerly possessed man wanted to be a follower of Jesus with him. This seems like a reasonable request.