Then the evil spirits begged him again and again not to send them to some distant place.
There happened to be a large herd of pigs feeding on the hillside nearby.
“Send us into those pigs,” the spirits begged. “Let us enter them.”
So Jesus gave them permission. The evil spirits came out of the man and entered the pigs, and the entire herd of about 2,000 pigs plunged down the steep hillside into the lake and drowned in the water.
The herdsmen fled to the nearby town and the surrounding countryside, spreading the news as they ran. People rushed out to see what had happened.
A crowd soon gathered around Jesus, and they saw the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons. He was sitting there fully clothed and perfectly sane, and they were all afraid.
Then those who had seen what happened told the others about the demon-possessed man and the pigs.
And the crowd began pleading with Jesus to go away and leave them alone.
As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been demon possessed begged to go with him.
But Jesus said, “No, go home to your family, and tell them everything the Lord has done for you and how merciful he has been.”
So the man started off to visit the Ten Towns of that region and began to proclaim the great things Jesus had done for him; and everyone was amazed at what he told them.