And when he went forth to land
The Persic and Ethiopic versions read,
when they went forth to land;
when Christ and his disciples came out of the ship, and went ashore:
there met him out of the city a certain man;
or rather, there met him a certain man of the city; that is, one that belonged to, and was an inhabitant of Gadera, or some city thereabout; who had been born and brought up, and had lived there; for certain it is, that he did not now come out of the city, but out of the tombs, as in ( Matthew 8:28 ) ( Mark 5:2 ) and to which agrees the account of him that follows here; in the Vulgate Latin version, these words, "out of the city" are omitted; which the interpreter not understanding, might leave out, as carrying in it a seeming contradiction to the accounts of him:
which had devils long time.
The Vulgate Latin, Syriac, Persic, and Arabic versions, read in the singular number, which had a devil: and which agrees with ( Luke 8:29 ) for though more are after mentioned, yet the many might be under one head, and chief of them; but in all the copies, it is read in the plural number, "devils"; and to this agrees the name of legion, for there were many devils in him, and they had a possession of him a long time which aggravates the miserable condition of this man, and illustrates the power of Christ in freeing him from them:
and wore no clothes;
but went naked, and when any were put upon him, would tear them in pieces:
neither abode in any house,
but in the tombs; (See Gill on Mark 5:3).