Matthew 8:30 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Matthew 8:30, NIV: Some distance from them a large herd of pigs was feeding.

Matthew 8:30, ESV: Now a herd of many pigs was feeding at some distance from them.

Matthew 8:30, KJV: And there was a good way off from them an herd of many swine feeding.

Matthew 8:30, NASB: Now there was a herd of many pigs feeding at a distance from them.

Matthew 8:30, NLT: There happened to be a large herd of pigs feeding in the distance.

Matthew 8:30, CSB: A long way off from them, a large herd of pigs was feeding.

What does Matthew 8:30 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Two demon-possessed men have approached Jesus in a Gentile region southeast of the Sea of Galilee. The demons in the men have called out to Jesus as the Son of God and have asked if He has come to torment them (Matthew 8:28–29). Mark and Luke, in their telling of this story, add the detail that Jesus asked the demons for their name. Their answer is "legion" because at least one of the men was possessed by many demons at once (Mark 5:9; Luke 8:30).

Now this simple verse foreshadows what is about to happen. A large herd of pigs was feeding in the distance. This confirms once more that Jesus and the disciples were not in Jewish territory. Since the Israelites understood pigs to be unclean, they had no reason to keep herds of them.

Modern people who read the phrase "a herd pf pigs" probably imagine something much smaller than what this scene suggests. Mark's telling of the story puts the number at about 2,000 pigs (Mark 5:13).