Questions about the exorcism of the demoniac son

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The story of the exorcism of the demoniac son is read on the 10th Sunday after Pentecost and the 4th Sunday of Great Lent.

  1. Which gospels report it?
  2. Why is it read in the Great Lent, and in particular, in the latter half? Give two reasons. Hint: a major focus of Great Lent is mentioned in the gospel text.
  3. What major event happened just before the casting out of the demon in the father's son?
  4. Tell the composite story, using all three gospel accounts (in your own words)


" And one of the multitude answered and said, Master, I have brought unto thee my son, which hath a dumb spirit; {18} And wheresoever he taketh him, he teareth him: and he foameth, and gnasheth with his teeth, and pineth away: and I spake to thy disciples that they should cast him out; and they could not." (Mark 9:17-18, see also Matt 17:15-16, Luke 9:38-40)

The man told Jesus he had asked His disciples to heal his son, and they could not. Which disciples? Why had he not gone to Jesus directly?


"And he asked his father, How long is it ago since this came unto him? And he said, Of a child." (Mark 9:21, not in the other accounts)

Why did Christ ask the father about his son, since He knows all things?


Explain the folk understanding of what a lunatic is.


What were the virtues and vices of the father? Cite scripture as evidence.


"And ofttimes it hath cast him into the fire, and into the waters, to destroy him: but if thou canst do any thing, have compassion on us, and help us." (Mark 9:22)

What is the inner meaning of this?


"Then Jesus answered and said O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I suffer you?" (Matthew 17.17)

Jesus' rebuke has deep inner meaning.

  1. Explain 2 meanings for Jesus' exclamation of "how long shall I be with you?"
  2. Explain the important connection between faithlessness and perversity.
  3. Who did Jesus rebuke?


"And when he was come into the house, his disciples asked him privately, Why could not we cast him out?" (Mark 9:28, also Matt 17:19)

Why did the apostles ask the Lord in private concerning their inability to cast out the demon? Why were the apostles unable to heal the boy?


"And when he was come into the house, his disciples asked him privately, Why could not we cast him out? {29} And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting." (Mark 9:28-29)

Prayer and fasting. How has the church applied this explanation to her daily life?


But Jesus took him by the hand, and lifted him up; and he arose. (Mark 9.27)

What does this mean?

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