Mark 5:13 Commentary - Whedon's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments
13. Gave them leave That is, as before said, after dismissing them from the man, he did not hold any control over their course. If they were able, like their fellow devils, to make any other lodgment, that was not our Lord’s present business. They had full leave, for aught he had to do. At any rate, better they should possess a beast than a man. We say this, because many have accused our Lord of doing a harm by sending them into the swine, and so destroying life and property. Our Lord drove them from the man, and that is all he had to do with them. For their own subsequent course of mischief they alone were chargeable, as truly as Judas or the Pharisees who blasphemed the Holy Ghost.
Ran violently down Devil upon brute! The ferment of the two combining natures produces madness. The swine ran into the sea and the devils went to their own place. This may have been the best way of driving him out of the human world to hell. And that is a second full answer to those who cavil, falsely as well as foolishly, that our Lord here destroyed the swineherd’s property. Surely our Lord is not responsible for the doings of the devils he expels from men.
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Whedon's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments
Daniel D. Whedon (1808-1885) was a prominent university professor, theologian, and author. He served as Professor of Ancient Languages at Wesleyan University in Connecticut; as Professor of Rhetoric at the University of Michigan; and as editor of the Methodist Quarterly Review from 1856 to1884. He authored numerous books including Commentary on the New Testament (New York: Carlton & Porter, 1860); Commentary on the Old Testament (New York: Nelson & Phillips, 1873); What is Arminianism? (Toronto: W. Briggs, 1879); and Essays, Reviews, and Discourses (New York: Phillips & Hunt, 1887).