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Saturday, March 22, 2014

SLOWLY Coming to Implement the Jesus Template

RE: Luke 8-26-39 : The Healing of a Demon-possessed Man

Stepping off the boat, how do you think Jesus reacted to the demon-possessed man?
a. with kindness
b. with fear
c. with authority
d. with uncertainty about the situation
e. instantly recognizing the Enemy
(Serendipity Bible 10th Anniversary Edition, page 1449).

Christians assert that the Jesus Template for human behavior has eternal significance.  This particular Bible reading illustrates how this is so.  When Jesus first approached the demon possessed man; he did so without fear or uncertainty, and  with understanding, authority, and kindness.  This is the much preferred way the mentally ill--say those tormented by the demons of schizophrenia--would wish to be treated today.  Note that Jesus did not out of the gate order the reimposition of restraints. Jesus simply asked "What is your name?" 

I have just completed reading a riveting book by Elyn Saks (The Center Cannot Hold) detailing her battle with schizophrenia.  Today her illness is being successfully treated by medication combined with psychoanalysis.  One thing the book makes abundantly clear is that those afflicted with the disease often encounter very unchristian behavior from others including the scourges of fear, uncertainty, misunderstanding, ineptitude, and unkindness. At various times during her illness, restraints were used on her repeatedly and "liberally".  Let us pray that the treatment of the mentally ill with take on an evermore Christian character with its embedded disciples of deep respect, compassion, and love.

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