| Back to Home Page | Back to Book Index |


Luke Chapter Eight


I. Content of the Chapter


The Believers of the Savior the Son of Man

I. The fellow-working of the twelve disciples and the provision of substance from the women (v.1-3).

II. The parable of the sower------the relation between the word and men’s hearts (v.4-15).

III. The parable of lighting a lamp------the relation between witness and recipience (v.16-18).

IV. Those who hear the word of the Lord and do it are the Lord’s real relatives (v.19-21).


The Authority of the Savior the Son of Man

I. The winds and water obeyed Him (v.22-25).

II. He cast the demons into the herd of swine (v.26-39).

III. He rose the daughter of Jairus (v.40-42, 49-56).

IV. He healed the woman who had the flow of blood (v.43-48).


II. Verse by Verse commentary


Luke. 8:1 “Now it came to pass, afterward, that He went through every city and village, preaching and bringing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God. And the twelve were with Him,

   YLT: “And it came to pass thereafter, that he was going through every city and village, preaching and proclaiming good news of the reign of God, and the twelve [are] with him,”

   Literal Meaning: “He went through every city and village” Jesus had preached for a period of time in the land of Judaea before (See John. 2:13-5:47); after He returned to Galilee from Judaea, He began to preach around the center of Capernaum (Luke. 4:16-7:50). From here, He went through every city and village and preached there one by one.


Luke. 8:2 “and certain women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities--Mary called Magdalene, out of whom had come seven demons,

   YLT: “and certain women, who were healed of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary who is called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone forth,”

   Literal Meaning: Mary called Magdalene” This appellation was used to separate her from Mary of Bethany and other “Mary”s because Mary was a common name. After the Lord Jesus rose from the dead, He first appeared to Mary called Magdalene (Mark. 16:9).


Luke. 8:3 “and Joanna the wife of Chuza, Herod's steward, and Susanna, and many others who provided for Him from their substance.

   YLT: “and Joanna wife of Chuza, steward of Herod, and Susanna, and many others, who were ministering to him from their substance.”

   Literal Meaning: Chuza, Herod's steward” Herod’s steward was the one who managed the wealth of the royal family of Herod and he had the high social position.

  “Who provided for Him from their substance” It shows that when Jesus and His disciples went out to preach, they did not provide for themselves by wonders but by the substance of these women who served them silently.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) In the ministry of the Lord, the cooperation of the twelve disciples with the Lord (See v.1) and the service and substance of the women (See v.2-3) are both needed.

2) Believers should also learn the good example of these women and devote our service and substance to the Lord and His work for the sake of loving the Lord.


Luke. 8:4 “And when a great multitude had gathered, and they had come to Him from every city, He spoke by a parable:

   YLT: “And a great multitude having gathered, and those who from city and city were coming unto him, he spake by a simile:”

Meaning of Words: “parable”: illustration, example.

Literal Meaning: “He spoke by a parable” “parable” is a way to express profound truth with things everyone is familiar with. If the parables are not opened, men will still linger in their vague ideas. And men’s understanding of the parable is determined by whether the listeners truly seek the Lord. The parable is of no help to those who do not truly seek the Lord and they do not quiet understand the parable.


Luke. 8:5A sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some fell by the wayside; and it was trampled down, and the birds of the air devoured it.

   YLT: “`The sower went forth to sow his seed, and in his sowing some indeed fell beside the way, and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the heaven did devour it.”

   The Background: according to the custom in the land of Palestine, sometimes farmers sow first and then plough the land. There were small ways and allays through the fields. The come-and-go made most of the lands hard and the seed was exposed on the ground as the food of birds.

Spiritual Meaning: “a sower went out to sow his seed”, “a sower” referred to the Lord Himself. “Seed” was the word of God (See v.11). Seed has life and the life grows, showing that there is life in the word of God (See John. 6:63). Seed grows in the field and the field is men’s heart (See v.12-15).

“Some fell by the wayside” “way” is the place where men communicate with each other. “Wayside” symbolizes the heart that communicates with and receives worldly things randomly.

“And the birds of the air devoured it.” “The birds” symbolize the devil (See v.12).

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) We have been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever (1Pet. 1:23).

2) There is life in the Lord’s word and the life grows. We should mix the word of the Lord that we have heard with faith and then the word of the Lord would profit us (See Heb. 4:2).

3) Men’s “hearts” are the battlefield of God and Satan. The reason why men reject the Lord and do not receive the word of the Lord is that the devil has blinded the thoughts of men (2Cor. 4:4).

4) The hearts of “wayside” have received various kinds of conceptions. Those preconceived ideas weaken the effect of God’s word in their hearts.

5) If our hearts are busy communicating with thousands of persons and things all the day, there will be no room for the word of God in our hearts. Even if we hear the word of God, it is still in vain.

6) The hearts of “wayside” also indicate the hardened hearts. There is no stamping ground for the “word” and therefore the word will be devoured.


Luke. 8:6 “Some fell on rock; and as soon as it sprang up, it withered away because it lacked moisture.

   YLT: “`And other fell upon the rock, and having sprung up, it did wither, through not having moisture.”

   Meaning of Words: “withered”: dry up, be ripe.

Literal Meaning: “Some fell on rock” “rock” indicates big and rocky stones and on which there is a thin layer of soil.

  “As soon as it sprang up, it withered away because it lacked moisture” “Sprang up” indicates that the sprout grows. Because the layer of soil is very thin and the moisture of the soil evaporates very quickly, the young sprout withers easily. 

Spiritual Meaning: “Some fell on rock” “Rock” indicates the land that has not been ploughed, symbolizing the heart of men who live by natural love and whose depth of heart has not been dealt with. Therefore their hearts are still as hard as rock (See Ezek. 37:26).

Enlightenment in the Word:

1) We should take root downward and bear fruit upward (Is. 37:31). If we want the word of God to take effect in us, we have to let the word of the Lord be rooted and founded in our hearts.

2) We must let the Lord remove the hardness of our hearts (“rock”) and then the word of the Lord will be rooted and developed in our hearts.

3) If one does not deal with any hidden sin or lust of the flesh, it will make his heart hardened as “rock” so that there will be no room for the word of God to grow in his heart.

4) If Satan could not take away the word of life out of men’s hearts (See v.12) and make them have no impression of the word, it would make men stay in “the surface layer” and not pursue deeply though they have received the word.

5) The cross does not only separate sinners------whoever is saved, or whoever will perish. Besides, it also separates believers------whoever is the overcomer, or whoever is the loser.


Luke. 8:7 “And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up with it and choked it.

   YLT: “`And other fell amidst the thorns, and the thorns having sprung up with it, did choke it.”

   Meaning of Words: “choked”: crowd, drown, throng.

Literal Meaning: “and the thorns sprang up with it and choked it.” It means that the necessary space for plants to grow is deprived by the thrones so that the plants cannot receive their necessary sunlight and nutriment.

Spiritual Meaning: “thorns”, they were yielded after God cursed the earth because of man’s falling (Gen. 3:17-18). Thorns symbolized things out of natural life, including the cares, riches and pleasures of life (See v.14).

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) If the devil can not tumble a believer with persecution, it will choke him by deceitfulness and delusions, making him only maintain his life and bear no fruit.

2) We can not love the world and God’s word together in our heart. The double-minded believers are unable to be perfected unto maturity.

3) The heart of “thorns” has never been dealt with. On one hand it is not favorable for the growth of God’s word. On the other, it may easily hurt others.

4) Thorns are able to grow without men’s sowing. Men do not need to be taught to covet, be anxious, or commit sins------all these are inborn.

5) What really matters is whether men have enough room for the working of God’s word in their hearts. Some are free outwardly but are choked in their hearts. Some are restrained outwardly but are broad inwardly.

6) Satan often mixes something that is neither life nor of Christ into the life of Christ in order to prevent Christ’s life in us from growing freely or from gaining necessary standing.


Luke. 8:8 “But others fell on good ground, sprang up, and yielded a crop a hundredfold. When He had said these things He cried, He who has ears to hear, let him hear!’”

   YLT: “`And other fell upon the good ground, and having sprung up, it made fruit an hundred fold.’ These things saying, he was calling, ‘He having ears to hear let him hear.’”

Spiritual Meaning: “others fell on good ground” “good ground”, it means that such ground has few (or even not) the previous three states in v.5-7. Good ground enables God’s word to root deeply in men’s hearts and there is enough room for the life of God’s word to bear fruit upward.

“He who has ears to hear, let him hear!” “Hears” are the most important organs for men to receive the word of the kingdom of God. First we have to “hear” the word of God and then the word will start to take effect in our “hearts”.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) Three kinds of ground among the previous four ones are not good and only the last one is the good ground that is able to bear full fruit by the Lord. The way to attain fullness is straitened and the gate is always narrow and they are few who find it (Matt. 7:13-14).

2) What is primary in the kingdom of God is man’s heart. It is impossible for one to reach fullness in the spirit if his heart is wrong. Therefore we should keep our hearts more than anything that is guarded (Prov. 4:23).

3) One’s heart belongs to the man himself. To be what kind of man is totally depended on what kind of man he desires to be, even God cannot force him.

4) The Lord values not only whether we have life but also the condition that we bear fruit.

5) God “purges and deals with” us through the cross------this is the condition for us to bring forth more fruit (John. 15:2).

6) The Lord’s word is open to all, however the carnal Christians can not understand the Lord’s word and only the spiritual Christians can hear (See 1Cor. 2:13-14).

7) The kingdom of God originates in the word of God and the beginning of all the works of God also depends on His word (Gen. 1:3, Heb. 1:1-3). Since God has treated us with grace to give us the spiritual ears, we should listen carefully (Matt. 11:15, Rev. 2:7 and etc).


Luke. 8:9 “Then His disciples asked Him, saying, What does this parable mean?’”

   YLT: “And his disciples were questioning him, saying, ‘What may this simile be?’”

   Literal Meaning: “disciples” refer to the group of men who are trained by the Lord to enter into the kingdom of God as His people.

  “What does this parable mean?” there are two functions of “the parable”:

A. To those who do not seek the Lord with their hearts, it is a punishment for them------seeing they may see and not perceive, and hearing they may hear and not understand (See v.10).

B. To those who seek the Lord with their hearts, it is the encouragement for them to remember easily, listen carefully and ask at any time.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) There are many hearers of the word (See v.4), but few ones really understand the word. It is vain for the hearer of the word who do not perceive.

2) If one desires to understand the word, he has to come to the Lord privately and have intimate fellowship with the Lord and then he will have the explanations from the Lord.

3) In order to enjoy the Lord’s word, believers shall not only “hear” the Lord’s word, but also “ask” the Lord about His word------seek and learn the word.


Luke. 8:10 “And He said, To you it has been given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, but to the rest it is given in parables, that Seeing they may not see, And hearing they may not understand.'

   YLT: “And he said, `To you it hath been given to know the secrets of the reign of God, and to the rest in similes; that seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand.”

   Meaning of Words: “mystery”: secret, hidden thing.

Literal Meaning: “the mysteries of the kingdom of God“the kingdom of God” is known as “the kingdom of heaven” in the Gospel of Matthew (Matt.13:11), and is called “the kingdom of God” in both the Gospels of Mark and Luke. In a broadly sense, the kingdom of God and the kingdom of heaven are a pair of synonyms. And in a narrow sense, the kingdom of heaven is a part of the kingdom of God, that is to say, the latter one includes the former one. The kingdom of God started from the past eternity to the eternity in the future. And the kingdom of heaven was counted from the beginning of the age of grace to the end of the kingdom of a thousand years.

“Mysteries” indicate the truth that cannot be known by men’s knowledge but can only be understood through God’s revelation. The mysteries of the kingdom of God are only revealed to those who desire to live in it. Since others have neither part nor lot in the kingdom of God, there is no need for them to know it.

“That Seeing they may not see, And hearing they may not understand.'” This word does not show that God does not want men to understand the mysteries of the kingdom of God, however, it shows a sorrowful fact------since men do not desire to seek the kingdom of God, there is no need for them to understand the mysteries of the kingdom of God.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) All spiritual and heavenly things are mysteries, e.g. the Lord’s presence, guidance, and words. Only believers know them, and all the unbelievers do not know them.

2) Only those who really desire to live in the kingdom of God can understand the mysteries of the kingdom of God, for it is unprofitable for those who do not really desire to live in the kingdom of God to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God.

3) Only those who have the experience of life in the Lord are able to understand the Lord’s word, for the Lord’s word is about the things of “the kingdom of God”. If a man wants to understand things concerning “the kingdom of men”, he needs the mature life of man. Likewise, if a believer desires to understand things of “the kingdom of God”, he has to rely on the grown and mature life of God (1Cor. 2:14).

4) The natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, nor can he know them (1Cor. 2:14). One can neither know the spiritual things nor hear the voice of the Lord if he relies on his natural comprehension and does not have the revelation.

5) To those who do not desire the Lord with their hearts, the spiritual truth seems to be nothing. Even if they have heard, it is of no effect. Those who reject God are also rejected by God. 


Luke. 8:11Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.

   YLT: “`And this is the simile: The seed is the word of God,”

   Meaning of Words: “word”: utterance, speech.

   Literal Meaning: “the word of God” is the message from God.


Luke. 8:12 “Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.

   YLT: “and those beside the way are those hearing, then cometh the Devil, and taketh up the word from their heart, lest having believed, they may be saved.”

Meaning of Words: “take away”: remove, carry;

Literal Meaning: if our hearts are willing to receive too many worldly persons and things (See the notes in v.5), we cannot keep God’s word in our hearts to ponder (See 2:19) so that we can not understand the word. And then it is easy for the devil to take away the word that we have heard.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) “The heart of the wayside” is the heart of evil communications (1Cor. 15:33). It desires everything and loves everything. Such heart is so mixed and disordered that God’s word is unable to be kept in them.

2) “The heart of the wayside” does not desire to receive God’s word at all. Though such man has heard, he has not regarded it as precious. Once the wicked one slightly provokes, he will disregard the Lord’s word.

3) If we lack the spiritual capacity, we will not receive the word of life of Christ.


Luke. 8:13 “But the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away.

   YLT: “`And those upon the rock: They who, when they may hear, with joy do receive the word, and these have no root, who for a time believe, and in time of temptation fall away.”

   Meaning of Words: “receive”: attain the word; “for a while”: a period of time; “temptation”: try, test.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The natural man is rather superficial and is thrall to passions. As long as something takes his fancy, he will immediately “receive it with joy”. His reaction towards the Lord’s word is quick but it cannot endure long.

2) Those who act impetuously only love to hear good word but do not like to pay any price for the word. They are hearers of the word, but not doers.

3) Many people receive the word of the Lord with their emotions. The moment they hear the word of the Lord, they “receive it with joy”. However, they have not thought the word cautiously and those men are unreliable.

4) The hearts of “the rock” may easily be touched by the word of the Lord in Spiritual Revival Gatherings, however, they are both easily to be fervent and to be apathetic.

5) The Christians who act impetuously are easy to be satisfied, however, they also feel hungry easily. They easily become happy and sad. They become fervent and apathetic easily.

6) “Root” is the unseen part and “have no root” shows that one lacks the unseen part. The difficulty of many believers is that: though they have the visible activity, they do not have the unseen life.

7) To the one who has the root, the temptation (tough circumstances) will help him to grow; to the one who has no root, he falls away in the time of temptation.

8) The life of Christians should not be “superficial”. We should not only have the life before men but lack the hidden spiritual life before God.

9) To those who root deeply in the Lord, tribulations and sufferings will help them to grow up and become spiritually mature. However those who are superficial and have no root will collapse at the first blow. 

10) The hearts of “the rock” want to gain heavenly blessings but fear worldly hardships. Even though they want to gain heavenly things, they are afraid to lose earthly things and consequently they hang in the air like Judah (Matt. 27:5).

11) The heart of “the rock” is the “half heart”------on one hand, such men receive with gladness and on the other, they are unwilling to pay any price for tribulations------they only want to “gain” and do not want to “give”. That’s why they must have neither part nor lot in the kingdom of God.

12) Through many tribulations, we must enter into the kingdom of God (Acts. 14:22).


Luke. 8:14 “Now the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity.

   YLT: “`And that which fell to the thorns: These are they who have heard, and going forth, through anxieties, and riches, and pleasures of life, are choked, and bear not to completion.”

   Meaning of Words: “cares”: concern, heed.

Literal Meaning: Concerning those whose hearts are full of various kinds of cares and deceitfulness, though God’s words will grow in their hearts, their flesh lusts are always against the Spirit (Gal. 5:17, 1Pet. 2:11) and there isn’t enough room and position (“choke”) for the word and they “bring no fruit to maturity”. “Bringing no fruit to maturity” means that the effect of God’s words is unable to be manifested (See Heb. 4:12), i.e. it is unable to bear the fruit of life (See Matt. 7:16-20).

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The moment the lust comes, the consequences as follows will be brought in: (a) the lust produces various cares and deceitfulness; (b) the lust obstructs the word of God from yielding effects in men (choke); (c) the lust makes life be unable to be mature (bring no fruit to maturity).

2) What the Lord cares is not whether you have received the life of God, but whether the life you have received from God has borne fruit. Though there are blades in the cornfield, if it does not bear fruit, the owner of the cornfield will gain nothing.

3) Cares, riches and pleasures in men’s hearts are what greatly hinder the God’s life from bearing fruit because they make us not abide in the Lord and be out of line with the Lord’s word. Consequently, we will be unable to bear fruit (See John. 15:4-8).

4) The Lord does not say committing sins makes us bear no fruit, but cares make us bear no fruit. Though money is not sin, it can encumber Christians and make us not grow well.

5) A man cannot spin and reel at the same time. If a man wants the Lord’s word bear fruit, he shall take his full heart towards the word------believers should love God and God’s word with all our heart, and with “all our soul, and with all our understanding” (Matt.22:37).

6) The main factors that hinder men from receiving the glad tidings are the devil, cares of life, tests and money. The parable of the sower explains the reason why there are few people that receive the glad tidings. 

7) “Life” in the original means the life of soul; if men live by the life of soul, it is no wonder that “the life of spirit” can’t be rich.


Luke. 8:15 “But the ones that fell on the good ground are those who, having heard the word with a noble and good heart, keep it and bear fruit with patience.

   YLT: “`And that in the good ground: These are they, who in an upright and good heart, having heard the word, do retain [it], and bear fruit in continuance.”

   Meaning of Words: “keep”: hold fast, persist to the end; “noble”: fair, ideal; “good”: well; “patience”: endurance, constancy.

   Literal Meaning: “bear fruit” means that we do according to the words that we have heard and understood (Matt. 7:24; James. 1:22-25), i.e. letting the word of God be manifested through our life.

  This verse shows us the reason for “yielding a crop a hundredfold” (See v.8):

A. Keep the word: one not only receives the word in his heart but also holds the word fast.

B. Keep the word with a noble heart: one treats the word with truth, without hypocrisy and without insincerity.

C. Keep the word with a good heart: one treats the word with humbleness, without stones and without thorns.

D. Bear fruit with patience: one endures various trials.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The word of the word is the same and only the one with good heart could bear fruit. The more one’s heart is open to God, the more easily the Lord’s word will take effect.

2) A man can completely decide what kind of land he will be and nobody can force him. Whether one bears fruit and how much one bears fruit totally depend on him. One has only himself to blame, and can never blame that God has not shown His grace.

3) “Bear fruit with patience” shows that it takes a period of time of working instead of one step for the word of the Lord to take effect in us.

4) Those who do not have patience could not bear fruit. Impatience, shortsightedness and eagerness for quick success and instant benefit are not the way to work.

5) After we have received the word of the Lord, we still have to absolutely submit to the appointed time of God and trust that time is the best servant of God.


Luke. 8:16No one, when he has lit a lamp, covers it with a vessel or puts it under a bed, but sets it on a lampstand, that those who enter may see the light.

   YLT: “`And no one having lighted a lamp doth cover it with a vessel, or under a couch doth put [it]; but upon a lamp-stand he doth put [it], that those coming in may see the light,”

   Literal Meaning: “No one, whether he has lit a lamp, covers it with a vessel or puts it under a bed” Here it means that the light should not be hidden.

“Sets it on a lampstand” it indicates that the lamp should be set on a clear position to illuminate the surrounding places.

   Spiritual Meaning: “No one, whether he has lit a lamp, covers it with a vessel” “vessel” is the tool for daily life and therefore it symbolizes the cares of life. That the lamp is put under a basket shows that believers are obsessed by the cares of life (being busy making a living).

“Under a bed” “Bed” symbolizes the coziness of life. That the lamp is set under a bed means that one is occupied by the enjoyment of life (seek the coziness of life) and consequently the light is overshadowed.

“Set on a lampstand”, “lampstand”, the proper utensil to put lamp, symbolizes the life of bearing witness of the Lord.

In this Book the paragraph from verse 16 to verse 17 is recorded after the parable of the sower, indicating that the Lord’s word is light------once we have received the light, we shall not hide it.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The spiritual light in us may often be eclipsed by both cares and pleasures of life------“vessel” and “bed”. Therefore, we shall usually live in the church------“on a lampstand” and we will have light.

2) The enlightenment that we have received from the Lord’s word may be covered under the basket or bed so that we can not shine because of our life cares and enjoyment.

3) Our attitude of life------whether we live for the Lord or ourselves (See Rom.14:7-8) ------has decisive influence on whether the light will be manifested or hidden.

4) If we want to shine for the Lord so as to lighten men around us, we have to overcome the cares of life (Matt. 6:24-34).

5) The lamp shines only when the oil is lighted up. “Oil” refers to the indwelling Holy Spirit. If we want to shine for the Lord, we have to be filled with the Holy Spirit (Eph. 5:18).

6) Everything that can prevent the Lord from shining through us is the “basket and bed”. Everything besides the Lord, even the best thing, may turn to be the “vessel and bed” that cover the light.

7) The light of Christians not only changes the outside way of men, but also affects their inward intentions.

8) If we want to see whether a man is spiritual or not, we have not to see how he acts in the gathering, but see how he acts in his family life.


Luke. 8:17 “For nothing is secret that will not be revealed, nor anything hidden that will not be known and come to light.

   YLT: “for nothing is secret, that shall not become manifest, nor hid, that shall not be known, and become manifest.”

Meaning of Words:secret”: hide, cover; “revealed”: appear, manifest; “come to light”: appear, bring to light (which enjoys the same etymon with the word “reveal”);

Literal Meaning: there are several kinds of explanations for this verse:

(1) The mystery of the kingdom of God is temporarily hidden and covered to the ordinary people, but it will be revealed finally.

(2) The word that we have received from the Lord is the light of life (See v.16; John 6:63; 8:12) that can neither be “hidden nor “covered”.

(3) If Christians are unwilling to preach the word of the kingdom of God, God will raise others to preach it.

(4) The sin that Christians hide the true light cannot be covered before God in the future.


Luke. 8:18 “Therefore take heed how you hear. For whoever has, to him more will be given; and whoever does not have, even what he seems to have will be taken from him.’”

   YLT: “`See, therefore, how ye hear, for whoever may have, there shall be given to him, and whoever may not have, also what he seemeth to have, shall be taken from him.’”

   Literal Meaning: “Therefore take heed how you hear.” Because they not only hear for themselves but also hear for the audience to which they will preach. This instruction should also be applied in us.

  Spiritual Meaning: “For whoever has, to him more will be given.” All those who have a right heart and have an understanding of the truth will receive more continually.

“And whoever does not have, even what he seems to have will be taken from him.” All those whose mind has not opened only have a vague idea of the truth, so that even what they think they have understood will also vanish.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) This verse shows the principle of the pursuit of spiritual things. The more you truly desire, the more you will be given. Otherwise, even what you have before shall be taken from you (See Matt. 25:29).

2) The more understanding of truth one has, the more will he seek. And the more one seeks the truth, the more will he understand and receive the truth. In addition, if one has no reaction to the truth he has received and does not cherish it, he will receive nothing from the truth he has received.

3) The more one uses his spiritual gifts, the more gifts he will be given. However, if he is slothful and seldom uses the gifts, what he has before will also be taken.

4) If the truth cannot be understood or applied by men, it will vanish (See Matt. 19:26). If the truth is applied, it will bear countless fruit. 

5) God’s word is like seeding. If the seed does not bear fruit, it will no longer exist and everything is lost. However, if the seed bears fruit, the result will be double and manifold.

6) If “the one does not have” think that he does not have, he would still be saved because the Lord said that “blessed are you poor” (See 6:20). However, if he thinks that he has already had, he is in darkness and in the end he will be poorer------what he has will be “taken” away from him. Therefore we should really “take heed how you hear”. 


Luke. 8:19 “Then His mother and brothers came to Him, and could not approach Him because of the crowd.

   YLT: “And there came unto him his mother and brethren, and they were not able to get to him because of the multitude,”

The Background: according to the records in the Gospel of Mark, the Lord Jesus could not so much as eat bread in order to keep the will of God the Father and His relatives said that He was out of His mind. Therefore they might have invited His mother and brothers to urge Him (See Mark. 3:20-21, 31).


Luke. 8:20 “And it was told Him by some, who said, Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, desiring to see You.’”

   YLT: “and it was told him, saying, ‘Thy mother and thy brethren do stand without, wishing to see thee;’”

Spiritual Meaning: “outside” of the house, this symbolizes in the outside of the house of God (the assembly).

Enlightenment in the Word: men can neither draw near to the Lord nor have fellowship with the Lord outside of the house of God.


Luke. 8:21 “But He answered and said to them, My mother and My brothers are these who hear the word of God and do it.’”

   YLT: “and he answering said unto them, ‘My mother and my brethren! they are those who the word of God are hearing, and doing.’”

   Literal Meaning: the Lord did not reject His family members in the flesh (See John. 19:26-27). He said so in order to reveal one point that: men can have the eternal life relationship with the Lord by keeping the word of God instead of the blood relationship.

   Spiritual Meaning: the Lord Jesus is the center of the revelation of God’s word. Those who keep the word of God are “His mother” who love Him and “His brothers” who help Him.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) God’s word reveals the will of God to men. And the will of God is to bring us to enter into the eternal rest (Heb. 4:1-11). Therefore those who do the will of God will enjoy the rest in the house of God.

2) Those that do the will of the Father live in the reality of the kingdom of God. They can surely establish the heavenly relationship with the king of the kingdom of heaven and will become His family members.

3) The spiritual relationship between the Lord and believers exceeds the corporeal relationship. Though we believers have responsibilities and obligations that we should take and fulfill, we should still put doing the will of God first.

4) All those who regard their spiritual brothers more important than their physical brothers will gain further spiritual growth and suffer less involvement in the worldly matters or pains caused by the physical relationship.

5) Since the Lord exalts the spiritual relationship more than the corporeal relationship, those who worship Mary have obviously made a serious mistake.


Luke. 8:22 “Now it happened, on a certain day, that He got into a boat with His disciples. And He said to them, Let us cross over to the other side of the lake." And they launched out.

   YLT: “And it came to pass, on one of the days, that he himself went into a boat with his disciples, and he said unto them, ‘We may go over to the other side of the lake;’ and they set forth,”

Spiritual Meaning: “boat” in the Bible symbolizes the assembly; “sea” symbolizes the world. Though the boat is in sea, it is separated from the sea. Though the assembly sojourns in the world, it is separated from the world. There was only the Lord and His disciples on the boat. That is to say, the Lord and those who are of Him make up the assembly.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The Lord and disciples are the key elements of making up the assembly and both of them are indispensable. If there is the Lord without the disciples, the assembly will not exist on earth. If there are only disciples without the Lord, the assembly will have neither content nor reality.

2) When we follow the Lord, the most important thing is whether the Lord is on the boat. It will be a big problem if the Lord is not on our boat.

3) We believers today are also sojourners in the world and are crossing over to the other side------the better and heavenly country (Heb. 11:13, 16).

4) That we follow the Lord is not though our own strength to “swim over to the other side”, but through the status of being in the “boat” of grace to “cross over to the other side”.

5) Since the Lord has said that “let us cross over to the other side”, He will surely take the responsibility of His own words. The faith of Christians is catching the Lord’s words. Once the Lord “has said” that let us cross over to the other side, we should “believe” that we will surely cross over to the other side.

6) The Lord said that “let us cross over to the other side”, not “drive down to the bottom of the sea”. Since we have the sure words of the Lord, we will never sink in the bottom of the sea even though the wind is strong and the wave is fierce.


Luke. 8:23 “But as they sailed He fell asleep. And a windstorm came down on the lake, and they were filling with water, and were in jeopardy.

   YLT: “and as they are sailing he fell deeply asleep, and there came down a storm of wind to the lake, and they were filling, and were in peril.”

   Meaning of Words: “storm”: upheaval, shake, waver.

The Background: the Sea of Galilee was often surging because of the sudden tempestuous storm. The fierce wind attacked the valley of Jordan River from the north, and would speed up when it was blowing through the valley. When the stormy wind arrived at the offing, the billowy offing would make the boats on the sea rather dangerous.

   Spiritual Meaning: “He fell asleep” symbolizes His hidden presence.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The assembly, in the world, is always attacked by the outside circumstances. Sometimes, the circumstance is so terrible that even the Lord’s presence seems to be lost (“He fell asleep”).

2) As long as we have the presence of the Lord, no matter He is with us obviously (He is awake) or secretly (“He falls asleep”), we will not be shaken even though the enemy stirs up troubles.


Luke. 8:24 “And they came to Him and awoke Him, saying, Master, Master, we are perishing! Then He arose and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water. And they ceased, and there was a calm.

   YLT: “And having come near, they awoke him, saying, ‘Master, master, we perish;’ and he, having arisen, rebuked the wind and the raging of the water, and they ceased, and there came a calm,”

   Meaning of Words: “rebuke”: reprove, blame; “cease”: stop, refrain; “calm”: tranquility, without any wind or wave.

Literal Meaning: “rebuked the wind and the raging of the water” the wind and sea had neither person nor consciousness. The Lord was rebuking the ruler of the authority of the air behind the wind and the sea (Eph.2:2) as well as the dirty spirit in the sea (See v.33).

   Spiritual Meaning: “they came to Him and awoke Him” “Awoke Him” symbolizes the prayer of believers.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) Terrible circumstances always force us to come to the Lord and call upon Him.

2) If men see the fierce winds and surges, they will feel that all hope of being saved is taken away. However, if we hold fast the Lord’s words, it is convinced that we will not be killed (See Acts. 27:20, 22-25).

3) Many times, we may doubt because of the terrible circumstances, however, those who have the true faith should learn to believe in the words of the Lord absolutely------“Let us cross over to the other side of the lake” (See v.22).

4) So shall the word of the Lord that goes forth out of His mouth: it shall not return unto Him void, but it shall accomplish that which He pleases (Is. 55:11).

5) All the disorder and writhe are caused by “the authority of the air”------the devil’s teasing. However, the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil first and then He would bring men the true peace.

6) All the trouble that the assembly is confronted with is stirred up by Satan and its ministers.


Luke. 8:25 “But He said to them, Where is your faith? And they were afraid, and marveled, saying to one another, Who can this be? For He commands even the winds and water, and they obey Him!’”

   YLT: “and he said to them, `Where is your faith?’ and they being afraid did wonder, saying unto one another, `Who, then, is this, that even the winds he doth command, and the water, and they obey him?’”

Literal Meaning: “Where is your faith?” The Lord reproached the disciples because they had lost faith in the power of His words and became fearful. They only cared for the winds and the sea before their eyes and forgot the words that the Lord had earlier commanded them-----“cross over to the other side” (See v.22).

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    What the Lord reproached was not their awaking Him (v.24) ------prayer but their lacking “faith”. The Lord likes us to trouble Him with prayers but does not like our prayers that lack the faith.

2) Those who lack the faith do not know the Lord and forget the Lord’s words. Such men only see other men as well as the circumstances, so they fear both men and circumstances.

3) We should let the words of the Lord change the circumstances, not let the circumstances change the words of the Lord.

4) Our prayers are supposed to be the manifestation of faith. However many times our prayers show our little faith. The Lord does not like our prayers that are made by little faith.

5) To those who really know the Lord and know to hold fast the words of the Lord, the greater the outside wind is, the more his inside faith will be. The outside wind can not blow away their faith and on the contrary the outside wind is calmed by their faith finally.

6) The Lord not only rebuked the wind and the sea (See v.24), but also rebuked the wicked heart of unbelief. He is not only the Master of the natural world and the Master of men’s heart as well.

7) The wind outside is not terrible. What is really terrible is the inside wind. No matter how terrible the outside wind is, as long as we do not let them blow into our heart, there will be of nothing to fear.

8) Tribulations make us know Him more deeply------“who can this be?” just like Job heard of God by the hearing of the ear, but after tribulations his eyes saw God (Job. 42:5).

9) The Lord is the king. The nature and all things shall obey Him. The demons hidden behind circumstances shall obey Him also. We who are of Him shall more obey Him.


Luke. 8:26 “Then they sailed to the country of the Gadarenes, which is opposite Galilee.

   YLT: “And they sailed down to the region of the Gadarenes, that is over-against Galilee,”

   Meaning of Words: “Gadarenes”: the reward in the end.

Literal Meaning: “Gadarenes” it was not far from the east coast of the Sea of Galilee. Since a large herd of swine was feeding there (See v.32), it must be a place where many Gentiles inhabited.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The disciples had finally “came to the other side of the sea” after strong wind and heavy swell. Though we believers have tribulations in the world, we will surely arrive at our destination as long as we have the presence of the Lord.

2) If we believers can keep the words of the Lord in the world, we will definitely receive “the reward in the end (the meaning of the word ‘Gadarenes’ in the original)” in the future.


Luke. 8:27 “And when He stepped out on the land, there met Him a certain man from the city who had demons for a long time. And he wore no clothes, nor did he live in a house but in the tombs.

   YLT: “and he having gone forth upon the land, there met him a certain man, out of the city, who had demons for a long time, and with a garment was not clothed, and in a house was not abiding, but in the tombs,”

   Meaning of Words: “live”: dwell.

The Background: “but in the tombs” Most of the tombs in the Middle East were caves, which could both be used to bury the dead and dwell for living ones.

Spiritual Meaning: “a certain man who had demons” that a man is possessed by demons symbolizes that men in the world are ruled by the devil.

“But in the tombs” The “tomb” connects both the dead and the hell (See Ps.88:3, 5).

This verse shows the conditions of those who have demons:

  1) “He wore no clothes.” He did not have the sense of shame.

  2) “Nor did he live in a house.” He did not have rest.

  3) “But in the tombs.” He lived a dark, unclean and dead life.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) In this society there are demon-possessed men everywhere such as heavy smokers, drunkards, the confirmed gamblers, novels addicts, movie addicts and sport addicts.

2) The demon-possessed men live a life as dark and dirty as that in the tombs. It is not only others cannot control such men, even they themselves have no command over themselves.

3) Believers should never give room to the devil lest we should be ruled by it.


Luke. 8:28 “When he saw Jesus, he cried out, fell down before Him, and with a loud voice said, What have I to do with You, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg You, do not torment me!’”

   YLT: “and having seen Jesus, and having cried out, he fell before him, and with a loud voice, said, ‘What to me and to thee, Jesus, Son of God Most High? I beseech thee, mayest thou not afflict me!’”

Literal Meaning: “fell down before Him” it was not the true “worship” in spirit, but only an act of “kneeling down” or “falling”.

“Jesus, Son of the Most High God” “the Most High God” is the appellation with which the Gentiles call Jehovah the Lord (See Gen. 14:18; Num. 24:16; Is. 14:14; Dan. 3:26; 4:2; Acts. 16:17). The unclean spirit knew the identity of Jesus.

“What have I to do with You?” The attitude of the demons is like that of those who admit the existence of God in the world but are unwilling to let God control their lives.

“I beg You, do not torment me!” the devil knew that its end in the future was the eternal fire (See Matt.25:41), but it did not fear and only besought the Lord that he would not command them to go away into the bottomless pit at present (See v.31).

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) Once Christ came, the devil automatically surrendered to the Lord, indicating that casting the devil did not depend on the outward fleshly crying, but the real stature of Christ.

2) “What have I to do with You, Jesus, Son of the Most High God?” The devil knew that the Lord Jesus is the Son of God and they had nothing to do with Him. It shows that the intellectual knowledge does not profit us if it is not mixed with a heart of faith and obedience.

3) There is neither part for Christ along with the devil, nor consent of that of God with that of the devil (See 2Cor.6:14-16). Therefore, we believers shall not take part in the matters of heresies.

4) Many nominal Christians also worship the Lord Jesus and call Him “the Son of God”, but their deeds and words have nothing to do with the Lord. Their ends are obvious.

5) The devil fears to “be tormented”, but it specially makes others “be tormented”. Moreover, the devil makes men suffer more tribulations in order to avoid its own torments.

6) Every time we preach the glad tidings to the world, the general reaction of men is that believing the Lord right now is a kind of “torment”. They expect to enjoy their life when they are young, and will come to believe the Lord when they are old.


Luke. 8:29 “For He had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For it had often seized him, and he was kept under guard, bound with chains and shackles; and he broke the bonds and was driven by the demon into the wilderness.

   YLT: “For he commanded the unclean spirit to come forth from the man, for many times it had caught him, and he was being bound with chains and fetters guarded, and breaking asunder the bonds he was driven by the demons to the deserts.”

   Meaning of Words: “broke”: tear asunder, rend.

Spiritual Meaning: this verse shows the conditions of those who had demons as an additional remark:

  1) “It had often seized him.” He cannot be delivered from the control of the devil.

  2) “He was kept under guard…was driven by the demon into the wilderness.” He cannot be restrained by any man.

  3) “Bound with chains and shackles, and he broke the bonds” It means that the best way that men could think of was helpless to him.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The whole world lies in the wicked (1John 5:19). No one can overcome it through men’s power.

2) The sin that dwells in men can not be controlled by men’s will of desiring to do good------for to will is there with me, but to do right not (See Rom. 7:17-18).

3) In order to deal with those who are possessed and controlled by the demon, the best way that the world can find out is merely “to bind them with chains and shackles”, namely, to forbid with laws and political regulations, to suppress by force, to restrict by public opinion, to rule by ceremonies and social customs and to govern by the conscience and etc. However, all of these means are turned out to be a failure, for the corruption of men’s hearts cannot be subdued by these.

4) The devil may possess men, but men cannot subdue it.


Luke. 8:30 “Jesus asked him, saying, What is your name? And he said, Legion, because many demons had entered him.

   YLT: “And Jesus questioned him, saying, `What is thy name?’ and he said, ‘Legion,’ (because many demons were entered into him,)”

Literal Meaning: legion” in the original refers to the army group or regiment. According to the establishment of the Roman army, there are about three thousand to six thousand soldiers in a regiment.

The Lord Jesus asked the man about his name, however, the unclean spirit answered the question, showing that that man was firmly controlled by many demons.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1) No matter how great the number of the unclean spirits was, they had to obey the word of the Lord Jesus. In the spiritual war, we should not see the outward conditions and we should trust the word of God.

2) There are usually many demons in sinners, e.g. the smokers, the drunkards, the confirmed gamblers and etc.


Luke. 8:31 “And they begged Him that He would not command them to go out into the abyss.

   YLT: “and he was calling on him, that he may not command them to go away to the abyss,”

Literal Meaning: “they begged Him” the unclean spirit is a kind of evil spirit that is separated from the physical bodies. It usually rests itself in certain bodies, so it usually possesses the body of men.

“That He would not command them to go out into the abyss” The “abyss” is the place to coop the evil spirits and Satan temporarily (See Rev. 9:1, 20:1, 3). Their end is “the lake of the eternal fire” (See Matt. 25:41, Rev. 20:10).

Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The devil is deceitful and is usually capricious by nature. It oppresses that it can oppress. However, when it is powerless, it would “beg”.

2) All the deeds of the devil are for the sake of itself. It does not have mercy, but begs others to show mercy to it.

3) When the Lord walked on earth as the Son of Man, He already had the authority to cast the devil into the “abyss”. God had entrusted men the mission to subdue the devil (See Gen. 1:26). “The first Adam” had already lost the mission and “the last Adam” had accomplished this mission (See 1Cor. 15:26, 45).


Luke. 8:32 “Now a herd of many swine was feeding there on the mountain. So they begged Him that He would permit them to enter them. And He permitted them.

   YLT: “and there was there a herd of many swine feeding in the mountain, and they were calling on him, that he might suffer them to enter into these, and he suffered them,”

The Background: “swine” is unclean in God’s eyes (Lev. 11:7, 2Pet. 2:22). Generally, the Jews did not raise swine at that time because the swine could neither be sacrificed to God nor used as food (the Jews do not eat pork). Therefore the swine might be kept by the gentiles.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The feature of swine is that it keeps feeding but in the end it becomes men’s food. The feature of the world is that men in the world keep seeking earthly enjoyment but they turn out to be the devil’s enjoyment.

2) Though the swine is a good way off from them (See Matt. 8:31), the swine is under the eyes of the demons. The devil is seeking whom he may devour everywhere (1Pet. 5:8). The safest way for us is to abide in Christ.


Luke. 8:33 “Then the demons went out of the man and entered the swine, and the herd ran violently down the steep place into the lake and drowned.

   YLT: “and the demons having gone forth from the man, did enter into the swine, and the herd rushed down the steep to the lake, and were choked.”

Spiritual Meaning: “Then the demons went out of the man and entered the swine” the Lord permitted the demons to go into the herd of swine, indicating that the unclean career of making money is the area where the demons are permitted to act.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) If the demons cannot play with men in them directly, they will play with men by outside things (entering the swine) indirectly.

2) The demons can not act until the Lord permit them. It unveils the power of the Lord, and even the demons are under His control.

3) The work of demons is to make men abandon themselves (“ran violently down the steep place”) and go into the sinful world (“into the lake”) and lose all reputation and ruin the whole life of men (“drowned”).


Luke. 8:34 “When those who fed them saw what had happened, they fled and told it in the city and in the country.

   YLT: “And those feeding [them], having seen what was come to pass, fled, and having gone, told [it] to the city, and to the fields;”

Spiritual Meaning: “those who fed them” typify a group of people in the society. They seem to be normal from their appearance, handling all kinds of professions diligently day and night, but they neither work for God nor for the assembly. In addition, the nature of their works is unclean and therefore they are unacceptable to God.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) No matter how noble is our job, if we do not work for the Lord and the assembly, we are unacceptable to God just like those who fed the swine.

2) “Those who fed them” lost the herd of many swine and properties. If they obtained the Lord by this, they would receive the best blessing. However they even rejected the Lord.

3) Many people suffer losses in career and do not thus wake up. On the contrary, they rely on the social organization more deeply (“in the city and in the country”).


Luke. 8:35 “Then they went out to see what had happened, and came to Jesus, and found the man from whom the demons had departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind. And they were afraid.

   YLT: “and they came forth to see what was come to pass, and they came unto Jesus, and found the man sitting, out of whom the demons had gone forth, clothed, and right-minded, at the feet of Jesus, and they were afraid;”

Literal Meaning: this verse showed the thorough change after the demons were cast out:

1) “Sitting at the feet of Jesus”: he was quiet and no longer ran about.

2) “Clothed”: he behaved well and was no longer shameless.

3) “In his right mind”: he was sober and no longer silly or mad.

Enlightenment in the Word: those who have received the salvation of Christ must: (1) have rest----“sit at the feet of Jesus”; (2) have the covering of Christ and not be shameless any more------“clothed”; (3) have a right mind to know God and spiritual things------“in his right mind”.


Luke. 8:36 “They also who had seen it told them by what means he who had been demon-possessed was healed.

   YLT: “and those also having seen [it], told them how the demoniac was saved.”


Luke. 8:37 “Then the whole multitude of the surrounding region of the Gadarenes asked Him to depart from them, for they were seized with great fear. And He got into the boat and returned.

   YLT: “And the whole multitude of the region of the Gadarenes round about asked him to go away from them, because with great fear they were pressed, and he having entered into the boat, did turn back.”

   Literal Meaning: “they were seized with great fear” There were two reasons that they were seized with fear: 1) they feared that the spirits may return to revenge them because they did not know that the Lord Jesus is the Son of God; 2) they feared for the greater loss of money because of the Lord Jesus. They lost the chance to receive the spiritual blessing because of fear.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The country of the Gadarenes did not welcome the Lord, for they only emphasized the earthly possessions more than the soul of men. However, the Lord preferred to sacrifice two thousand swine (See Mark. 5:13) in order to save the soul of a man. How precious the soul of man is in the sight of the Lord!

2) The earthly world and the heavenly king cannot coexist in one’s heart. If any one loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him (1John. 2:15).

3) Satan uses money to control men’s heart------both gain and loss can make us reject the Lord.

4) “The whole multitude of the surrounding region of the Gadarenes” actually rejected the Lord. It shows that those who do not know the Lord are rather blind when they reject the Lord together.


Luke. 8:38 “Now the man from whom the demons had departed begged Him that he might be with Him. But Jesus sent him away, saying,

   YLT: “And the man from whom the demons had gone forth was beseeching of him to be with him, and Jesus sent him away, saying,”

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The multitude asked the Lord to depart from them (See v.37), however, the one out of whom the demons were cast begged to be with Jesus. Those who were deceived by the demon do not desire the Lord and those with the right mind would desire the Lord.

2) That man sought the Lord to be with him, however, the Lord sent him away. Though it is well that we always have communion with the Lord, however, it is indispensable to return to bear witness of the Lord.


Luke. 8:39Return to your own house, and tell what great things God has done for you. And he went his way and proclaimed throughout the whole city what great things Jesus had done for him.

   YLT: “`Turn back to thy house, and tell how great things God did to thee;’ and he went away through all the city proclaiming how great things Jesus did to him.”

   Literal Meaning: “tell what great things God has done for you” This is the witness that every one who has been saved should bear.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The first step for a Christian is to bear witness towards his families and friends.

2) To bear witness of the Lord is one thing, and to show off oneself is another thing. Many believers seem to bear witness of the Lord, but actually they just make themselves known openly.

3) To bear witness is to tell others “what great things God has done for you”. It is to make others know the Lord’s work, but not to let others notice that we are extraordinary.


Luke. 8:40 “So it was, when Jesus returned, that the multitude welcomed Him, for they were all waiting for Him.

   YLT: “And it came to pass, in the turning back of Jesus, the multitude received him, for they were all looking for him,”


Luke. 8:41 “And behold, there came a man named Jairus, and he was a ruler of the synagogue. And he fell down at Jesus' feet and begged Him to come to his house,

   YLT: “and lo, there came a man, whose name [is] Jairus, and he was a chief of the synagogue, and having fallen at the feet of Jesus, was calling on him to come to his house;”

   Meaning of Words: “Jairus”: enlightenment.

   Literal Meaning: “a ruler of the synagogue” referred to the one who managed the order of worship in the Jewish synagogue, who enjoyed high social status among the Jews.

   Spiritual Meaning: “synagogue” was a place for the Jews to gather together, so the ruler symbolized the whole Judaism and its leaders.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) Only those who have obtained the revelation and “enlightenment” of God (the meaning of ‘Jairus’ in the original) can know the Lord and come to fall down at His feet to seek Him.

2) Jairus, a ruler of the synagogue, even fell down at the Lord’s feet to worship Him in spite of his status and position, indicating his humbleness and modesty. The one who is willing to be humble can receive blessings (See Matt.5:3; James 4:6).


Luke. 8:42 “for he had an only daughter about twelve years of age, and she was dying. But as He went, the multitudes thronged Him.

   YLT: “because he had an only daughter about twelve years [old], and she was dying. And in his going away, the multitudes were thronging him,”

   Meaning of Words: “thronged”: press upon.

   Literal Meaning: “the multitudes thronged Him” It means that the multitudes thronged Him so that He even could not breathe freely.

   Spiritual Meaning: “he had an only daughter about twelve years of age, and she was dying.” “Daughter” is the offspring of the father, and therefore the condition that “the daughter of the ruler of the synagogue was dying” symbolizes the condition of those who were led by the stiff Judaism and its leaders------they lacked life and were dying.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The daughter of the ruler was dying------if the leading brother in the assembly lacks life, those who are led by him will lack life too. The state of the common believers’ life shows the state of the minister’s life.

2) If we only stress on the reasons, doctrines and ceremonies in the assembly, probably those who are edified by us have a name that they live, and are dead (Rev. 3:1).

3) The Lord came to specially solve the difficulties of men. As long as we are willing to tell Him our troubles through prayers, He will be surely pleased to help us.


Luke. 8:43 “Now a woman, having a flow of blood for twelve years, who had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any,

   YLT: “and a woman, having an issue of blood for twelve years, who, having spent on physicians all her living, was not able to be healed by any,”

   Meaning of Words: “a flow of blood”: the irregular shedding of blood. 

   Literal Meaning: “a flow of blood”, it might be an unusual symptom of menses (See Lev. 15:25).

   Spiritual Meaning: according to the research of the Bible scholars, that “woman” was a Gentile woman and therefore she symbolized the Gentile religion.

  “A flow of blood” symbolizes the flow of life because the soul of the flesh is in the blood (Lev. 17:11). This gentile woman had a flow of blood for twelve years and the former dying Jewish girl was exactly twelve years old (See v.42). Therefore they both referred to the same thing that all the religions in the world are leaking life and were dead religions in the sight of God. They had a name that they lived and were dead (Rev. 3:1).

  “Twelve years” symbolized that they had been dealt with and instructed by God enough.

  “Who had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any” “Physicians” symbolized philosophers and religionists. The ordinary men know that there are problems in their life and therefore they seek help from the philosophy and religious men. What they should know is that they have spent their money and even all their livelihoods on these and it is of no help.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) Anyone who does not live for God or for the aim to be gained by God has a flow of blood------to consume his life.

2) The woman with the flow of blood sought help from “physicians” of men. She had not been healed and she had even spent “all her livelihood”. In like manner, if we rely on the help outside of Christ, our problems cannot be solved at all and the original spiritual life will even be consumed completely.


Luke. 8:44 “came from behind and touched the border of His garment. And immediately her flow of blood stopped.

   YLT: “having come near behind, touched the fringe of his garment, and presently the issue of her blood stood.”

   Meaning of Words: touch”: contact.

   The Background: the Jews regard “the flow of blood” as unclean, and whoever touches them shall be unclean (Lev. 15:25-30). That was why the woman did not want to let others know her condition and came from behind and touched the border of Jesus’ garment secretly.

  “The border of garment” “The border” was the slender belt wore by the Jews on the edge of garments. It is used is to remind the wearer to keep the will of God (Num. 15:37-39).

   Spiritual Meaning: “touched the border of His garment” The Lord’s “garment” symbolizes His righteousness. “Touching the border of His garment” means that one touches the Lord through faith, unites to the Lord and takes the Lord’s accomplished righteousness as his own righteousness.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) “She came from behind.” It means that she was with the spirit of humbleness and felt that she was unworthy. God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble (James. 4:6).

2) Jehovah is clothed with strength. He has girded himself therewith (Ps. 93:1). Once we have touched Him, we will receive power.

3) The power of the Lord is perfected in weakness (2Cor. 12:9). Whenever we find ourselves weak, we should come to the Lord and ask for His power.

4) When we Christians are confronted with difficulties, we should not touch the troubles------try to solve them by ourselves, but touch the Lord through faith in prayers------ask the Lord to deal with the problems.

5) Faith is entrusting ourselves totally to the Lord and asking Him to do and save us.

6) Faith without works is dead (James 2:20). Faith should be acted out.

7) The prayer of faith has much power (See James 5:15-16). The prayer of faith will be answered “immediately”.

8) If we want to solve any trouble that we are encountered with through asking for men’s help------“physicians”, it is in vain and we even would “have spent all our livelihoods” (See v.43). Only when one has “touched” the Only Lord Jesus, will he be healed immediately------“immediately her flow of blood stopped”.

9) Those who really have intimate fellowship with the Lord will surely feel that they are strengthened by the power of the Lord. All those who keep the same feeling before and after prayers may have not really touched the Lord.


Luke. 8:45 “And Jesus said, Who touched Me? When all denied it, Peter and those with him said, Master, the multitudes throng and press You, and You say, Who touched Me?’”

   YLT: “And Jesus said, `Who [is] it that touched me?’ and all denying, Peter and those with him said, `Master, the multitudes press thee, and throng [thee], and thou dost say, Who [is] it that touched me!`”

   Literal Meaning: the Lord Jesus actually knew who had touched His garment, for He knows everything. He asked this question because He wanted to make the woman bear witness of the Lord’s grace publicly------she had to boldly testify her miserable condition in the past and how she was healed because of the act of touching (the contact of faith).

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) “Who touched Me?” The Lord neither wants men to believe Him secretly nor receive His grace privately. Today, the Lord is looking around to see those who have real faith in Him.

2) The disciples thought that “thronging” the Lord was “touching” the Lord, for it was hard to distinguish the differences between them from the appearance. However, the Lord knew that “touching” Him was totally different from “thronging” Him.

3) The Lord actually does not care for those who “throng” Him. However, the Lord knows them who truly desire Him and really “touch” Him.

4) There are many people “thronging” the Lord, but there is only one who “touches” Him. “Thronging” may be of the passionate zeal, but “touching” must be done through the hand of faith. Believers, do we “throng” the Lord or “touch” the Lord?


Luke. 8:46 “But Jesus said, Somebody touched Me, for I perceived power going out from Me.’”

   YLT: “And Jesus said, ‘Some one did touch me, for I knew power having gone forth from me.’”

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The Lord who is full of power is waiting for us to stretch out our hands to appropriate power from Him.

2) We may be very close to the Lord and even “throng” Him, however, we have not “touched” Him truly. “Thronging” does not make the power go out from the Lord and “touching” makes His power be released. One may receive nothing after “thronging”, but the disease of twelve years has once been healed after “touching”. Have you tried to pray and touch with faith?


Luke. 8:47 “Now when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling; and falling down before Him, she declared to Him in the presence of all the people the reason she had touched Him and how she was healed immediately.

   YLT: “And the woman, having seen that she was not hid, trembling, came, and having fallen before him, for what cause she touched him declared to him before all the people, and how she was healed presently;”

   Meaning of Words: “saw”: be aware; “hidden”: cover up, neglect; “trembling”: quaver.

   Enlightenment in the Word: though some Christians have enjoyed the Lord’s abundant grace and have been inspired and pressed by the Lord for many times, they still dare not confess that they believe the Lord Jesus before men and are shameful of bearing witness of the Lord!


Luke. 8:48 “And He said to her, Daughter, be of good cheer; your faith has made you well. Go in peace.’”

   YLT: “and he said to her, ‘Take courage, daughter, thy faith hath saved thee, be going on to peace.’”

   Literal Meaning: “your faith has made you well.” it showed that her act of touching the Lord’s garment with hand was due to her inner faith. Men can receive the healing of the Lord through touching Him in faith only.

  “Go in peace.” Before one has been save, he has not known the way of peace (Rom. 3:17). The salvation of the Lord guides our feet into the way of peace (See 1:79).

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) Without faith, it is impossible to please God (Heb. 11:6).

2) Religionists want to please God by good works and yet consequently they fall into the poor state of death. The only way to be saved and healed is to receive the salvation of the Lord Jesus through faith.

3) If we outstretch our hand of faith to touch the Lord, His power will enable us to overcome difficulties.  

4) All those who have met Christ must “go in peace”.


Luke. 8:49 “While He was still speaking, someone came from the ruler of the synagogue's house, saying to him, Your daughter is dead. Do not trouble the Teacher.’”

   YLT: “While he is yet speaking, there doth come a certain one from the chief of the synagogue’s [house], saying to him `Thy daughter hath died, harass not the Teacher;’”

   Meaning of Words: “trouble”: bother.

   Literal Meaning: “do not trouble the Teacher!” It obviously indicated that this family hoped that the daughter could be healed before death------since she was dead, they gave up their hope.

  What the ruler of the synagogue feared is “death” and it was different from “the devil” of which the men in Gadarenes were feared. However, before Jesus both of them were under His authority.


Luke. 8:50 “But when Jesus heard it, He answered him, saying, Do not be afraid; only believe, and she will be made well.’”

   YLT: “and Jesus having heard, answered him, saying, `Be not afraid, only believe, and she shall be saved.’”

   Meaning of Words: the words “be afraid” and “believe” are both in a commanding tone.

   Literal Meaning: “do not be afraid, only believe.” From the tense and voice in the original we can see that the Lord asked him to stop the endless fear, and encouraged him to believe as usual.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) Men’s words make us be discouraged and afraid and even lose faith. However, the Lord’s words will grant us comfort and encouragement and increase our faith.

2) Fear may make one lose faith, and strong faith will prevent one from being afraid.


Luke. 8:51 “When He came into the house, He permitted no one to go in except Peter, James, and John, and the father and mother of the girl.

   YLT: “And having come to the house, he suffered no one to go in, except Peter, and James, and John, and the father of the child, and the mother;”


Luke. 8:52 “Now all wept and mourned for her; but He said, Do not weep; she is not dead, but sleeping.’”

   YLT: “and they were all weeping, and beating themselves for her, and he said, `Weep not, she did not die, but doth sleep;”

   Literal Meaning: “now all wept and mourned for hem” “All” might be the women who were hired to mourn and cry for the dead.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) If a man is still alive, others may show indifference to him. However, when the man has been dead, men will come to show compassion to him. It is usually unnecessary to help others after the event.

2) All those who are elected and preordained by God will not be completed like those who have no hope after death. They have fallen asleep (1Thess. 4: 13-14).


Luke. 8:53 “And they ridiculed Him, knowing that she was dead.

   YLT: “and they were deriding him, knowing that she did die;”

   Meaning of Words: “ridiculed”: sneer at, deride.

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) Those who “ridicule” the Lord only see the fact. Those who believe the Lord see Jesus only over the fact (See Matt. 17:8).

2) They “knew” the fact well and therefore they “ridiculed Jesus”. Men’s original knowledge, natural conceptions and old experiences would always make men despise and reject Christ.

3) The purpose of all the Lord’s works is not for our “praise” but to quicken us, and is not to distribute “knowledge” but to “distribute life”.


Luke. 8:54 “But He put them all outside, took her by the hand and called, saying, Little girl, arise.’”

   YLT: “and he having put all forth without, and having taken hold of her hand, called, saying, `Child, arise;’”

   Enlightenment in the Word: it is already time that we should be aroused out of sleep (Rom. 13:11), for the Lord is saying to us: “arise”.


Luke. 8:55 “Then her spirit returned, and she arose immediately. And He commanded that she be given something to eat.

   YLT: “and her spirit came back, and she arose presently, and he directed that there be given to her to eat;”

   Spiritual Meaning: the former Gentile woman had a flow of blood for “twelve years” (See v.43). This girl who was raised from the dead by the Lord was “twelve years old” (See v.42). It can be clearly seen that this girl might be born when that woman began to have the flow of blood. Therefore we can take both of them as a whole thing, which typifies that men’s life in the world is consumed because of sins. Men are alive, however, in God’s sight they are actually dead in offenses and sins (Eph. 2:1). Only through believing the Lord Jesus can men be united to “His mighty hand” and be quickened with Him together (Eph. 2:5), namely, having been passed out of death into life (John 5:24-25).

   Enlightenment in the Word:

1) The Lord asked the little girl to arise (See v.54) and she rose immediately. When the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God, and they that have heard shall live (John 5:25).

2) “He took her by the hand” (See v.54)------when the Lord takes our hands of serving and working, our service and works will have a turning point------“she arose immediately”.

3) “He commanded that she be given something to eat.” The need of life is “eating”, and “eating” is the manifestation of life.

4) Many people in the church only focus on preaching the gospels, but neglect to feed believers who have just believed. However, the Lord here asks us to care for their need.


Luke. 8:56 “And her parents were astonished, but He charged them to tell no one what had happened.

   YLT: “and her parents were amazed, but he charged them to say to no one what was come to pass.”

   Literal Meaning: “to tell no one what had happened” The Lord did not want others to follow Him because of curiosity.


III. Outlines of the Spiritual Lessons


Four Kinds of Hearts

I. The heart of the wayside------they are hard to receive the word of God so that the word is taken by Satan (v.5, 12).

II. The heart of the rock------they receive the word of God with gladness, but have no root in themselves (v.6, 13).

III. The heart of the ground of thorns------the word of God is choked by the cares, riches and desires of life (v.7, 14).

IV. The heart of the good ground------the word of God is able to increase and bear fruit in such ground a hundredfold (v.8, 15).


The Word and Men’s Hearts

I. The wayside where the word is sown (v.5, 12)------the word has not entered into man’s heart (man whose faith is not stable).

II. The rock where the word is sown (v.6, 13)------only a part of the word has entered into man’s heart (man whose faith is not sufficient).

III. The thorns where the word is sown (v.7, 14)------a half of the word has entered into man’s heart (man whose faith is not firm).

IV. The good ground where the word is sown (v.8, 15)------the word has deeply entered into man’s heart (man whose faith is great).


Four Kinds of Men Who Hear the Word

I. Those who do not have life (v.5, 12).

II. Those who have life and do not have the process of life (v.6, 13).

III. Those who have life and the process of life and do not have the fruit of life (v.7, 14).

IV. Those who the life that bears the fruit a hundredfold (v.8, 15).


Who Can This Be (v.25)?

I. He is the Lord who is with us------Jesus got into a boat with His disciples (v.22a).

II. He is the Lord who guides us------Jesus said to the disciples, "Let us cross over to the other side" (v.22b).

III. He is the Lord who tries the disciples------as they sailed Jesus fell asleep (v.23).

IV. He is the Lord who grants those who ask Him------they awoke Him…the wind and the raging of the water ceased and there was a calm (v.24).

V. He is the Lord who teaches the disciples------Jesus said to them, "Where is your faith?" (v.25a)

VI. He is the Lord of all things------that even the wind and the sea obey Him (v.25b)!


The Conditions of the Man Who Had Demons

I. He wore no clothes (v.27)-------he had no sense of shame.

II. He did not live in a house (v.27)------he did not have rest.

III. He lived in the tombs (v.27)------he associated with death, darkness and dirtiness all day, namely he lived in the sphere and principle of death.

IV. He thought that he has nothing to do with the Lord (v.28a)------he did not repent to believe the Lord.

V. He feared to be tormented at that time (v.28b)------he was only concerned about the present enjoyment and did not care about the punishment in the future.

VI. The demon had often seized him (v.29a)------he cannot be divorced from the control of the demons.

VII. Nobody could keep him under guard (v.29b)------he fulfilled the lust of the flesh and cannot be controlled.

VIII. Chains and shackles could not bind him (v.29c)------the best way of men could not bind him.

IX. The demons conspired as a “legion” (v.30)------they liked to associate with evil persons.

X. They entered a herd of many swine (v.32)------he did the unclean work.

XI. The demons made the herd run violent down the steep place (v.33a)------he abandoned himself.

XII. The herd ran down into the lake and drowned (v.33b)------he lost all his reputation and his whole life.


The Woman Who Had a Flow of Blood for Twelve Years Was Healed by the Lord

I. She had a flow of blood for twelve years (v.43a)------her life was leaking.

II. She asked the help from physicians and it was useless (v.43b)------she sought help from all the methods in the world and all of them were ineffective.

III. She came and touched the border of Jesus’ garment (v.44a)------she touched the Lord with faith

IV. She experienced the power of the Lord Jesus (v.44b-46)------she obtained the life of God.

V. Her heart was moved by the Lord (v.47a)------she knew that she could not be a hidden believer.

VI. She bore witness to the grace that she had received (v.47b)------she declared the works of the Lord in her.

VII. She received the verification of the words of the Lord (v.48a)------your faith has made you well.

VIII. She got the true peace (v.48b)------she enjoyed the gracious word of the Lord.


The Little Daughter of the Ruler of the Synagogue Was Healed

I. He came to see the Lord Jesus humbly------he fell down at Jesus’ feet (v.41b).

II. He came to beg the Lord Jesus truly------he begged Jesus to come to his house (v.41c).

III. He followed the Lord with perseverance------though he heard the bad news, he still followed the Lord (v.49-51).

IV. He trusted the Lord Jesus at rest------he did not follow the tumult but heard the command of the Lord quietly (v.52).

V. He believed the Lord Jesus wholly------he witnessed the resurrection of the child (v.54-55a).

VI. He obeyed the Lord Jesus joyfully------he fed the child according to the Lord’s commandment (v.55b).


── Caleb HuangChristian Digest Bible Commentary Series

   Translated by Sharon Ren