Mark 5:21-43 KJV
Now when Jesus had crossed over again by boat to the other side, a great multitude gathered to Him; and He was by the sea. And behold, one of the rulers of the synagogue came, Jairus by name. And when he saw Him, he fell at His feet and begged Him earnestly, saying, “My little daughter lies at the point of death. Come and lay Your hands on her, that she may be healed, and she will live.” So Jesus went with him, and a great multitude followed Him and thronged Him.
A Woman with Issue is Healed
Now a certain woman had a flow of blood for twelve years, and had suffered many things from many physicians. She had spent all that she had and was no better, but rather grew worse. When she heard about Jesus, she came behind Him in the crowd and touched His garment. For she said, “If only I may touch His clothes, I shall be made well.” Immediately the fountain of her blood was dried up, and she felt in her body that she was healed of the affliction. And Jesus, immediately knowing in Himself that power had gone out of Him, turned around in the crowd and said, “Who touched My clothes?” But His disciples said to Him, “You see the multitude thronging You, and You say, ‘Who touched Me?’ ” And He looked around to see her who had done this thing. But the woman, fearing and trembling, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell down before Him and told Him the whole truth. And He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace, and be healed of your affliction.”
Jairus’s Daughter is Healed
While He was still speaking, some came from the ruler of the synagogue’s house who said, “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the Teacher any further?” As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, He said to the ruler of the synagogue, “Do not be afraid; only believe.” And He permitted no one to follow Him except Peter, James, and John the brother of James. Then He came to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and saw a tumult and those who wept and wailed loudly. When He came in, He said to them, “Why make this commotion and weep? The child is not dead, but sleeping.” And they ridiculed Him. But when He had put them all outside, He took the father and the mother of the child, and those who were with Him, and entered where the child was lying. Then He took the child by the hand, and said to her, “Talitha, cumi,” which is translated, “Little girl, I say to you, arise.” Immediately the girl arose and walked, for she was twelve years of age. And they were overcome with great amazement. But He commanded them strictly that no one should know it, and said that something should be given her to eat.
In both of these stories you have people who without a touch from Jesus have a pretty bleak future. In one situation we have a father who is about to lose his daughter, we have a little girl who is about to die, and we have a woman who is sick with no hope of recovery. These are all very real issues of life. The voice of despair yelling at them or at us in our lives to surrender, because things are not getting better. However, Jesus places a challenge to them in the midst of their difficult moment. His challenge is, will you believe? Who will you believe? Will you declare what you believe?
I can relate today to both Jairus and the woman. I understand the fear of loss which is what would have been in his heart. The idea of losing someone you love will push you to do things you might not normally do. The thought of living without them in your life is so unbearable that you will desperately pursue the answer to see them healed. For the woman, I have felt her hopelessness when searching for answers regarding health issue’s and no answers came. She was desperate. You do desperate things in those moments. She was willing to take a risk for her miracle. A woman touching a man especially with her condition. Culturally and Religiously unacceptable at that time, but she took the risk and he met her in her place of need.
His response to these people were such kindness and tenderness. Do not fear, only believe. He speaks the same word to our hearts. Do not fear, only believe.
Three questions arise for me from these stories. Am I desperate for his touch? Am I willing to take a risk to have it? Do I really believe He is able?
Looking forward to hearing your thoughts on how we can apply this to our lives.
Sue says:January 16, 2014 at 1:14 am
Let me step into the sandals of the woman in this incident. A woman suffering from a long-term health issue … twelve years with a blood disorder. In Jesus’ era on earth this woman would be considered unclean. For at least twelve years she would have been isolated from society, from family and friends. For twelve years she went from doctor to doctor. Some of the doctors were legit and some maybe not … but they all were faithful to take her resources. The scripture says that the twelve-year duration of doctor’s visits with the various medical tests of her day used up all her money.
On top of the social stigma of the blood disease and financial stigma of having no resources left (and probably no way of getting any) I have to consider her physical state. Twelve years of losing blood would have to leave her in a weakened state. I know how just over twelve months with a similar situation felt. This woman, probably through no fault of her own, ended up isolated, destitute, and weak. She ended up desperate. Desperate people will do desperate things … they will take steps that seem radical to others … they will take risks.
She knew that she only needed to get close to Jesus. Close enough to touch Him. She had heard enough about this Man claiming to be God. She saw enough of this Man who was willing to touch the untouchables. She had heard the stories of others who had seen a Man filled with love & compassion dare to defy the religious & political rulers of His day in order to reach them in their need.
She was willing to risk being shamed by the crowds all over again in order to get close to Him. She was willing to risk rejection one more time because she knew there was something different about this Man claiming to be the Son of God.
I can relate to her long-term illness. More than 50 years of carrying around a disease that is steadily progressive has taken its toll in many ways. Spending my resources running from doctor to doctor, with endless lists of procedures has been ‘testing’. ☺
But I have to ask myself, am I desperate enough to take risks? Am I willing to risk the ridicule of today’s crowd to get close to Jesus? Would I be willing to accept the ridicule of the religious hierarchy if I felt Christ asking me to be a risk taker to intimately pursue Him?
The little I have is what He wants … not my abundance. I could easily give of my abundance, but I want to be like the lady in today’s scripture who was willing to sacrifice all that she had left. My desire is to reach the place where Jesus is the solution to my desperation and I’m not willing to consider any other option because for me there is no other option.
This lady has the answer to each of our dilemmas … get close to Jesus … close enough to reach out and touch Him.
Susan Craig says:January 16, 2014 at 5:18 am
I am challenged by this passage today to have the courage of the father Jarius who pursued healing for his daughter who was on her death bed-How he must have been feeling helpless in this situation-then even hopeless when the news that his daughter had died was given to him-how quickly that despair must have changed to pure joy and gratitude when his daughter was given her life back. And the ill woman who was given up by the doctors in her day who said she had to live with her illness-there was no cure!! I wonder how they mustered up the courage to seek a miracle of healing from Jesus. They must have felt like they had nothing to lose by seeking help from Jesus!! They both received the gift of healing.
I too have been in the place of despair when after many years of working in the health care field,I found myself in the position of a patient who had to seek help from many doctors in trying to find a cause and cure for a disease about which there was very little information to be found and no treatment or cure. I was plagued by constant pain and fatigue that exhausted me-I was deprived of the strength I needed to cope with the challenges of raising teenaged boys and having to continue to work to provide for them at the same time. This went on for years with no improvement in my health-in fact my health continued to decline. I know my God is loving and powerful enough to do anything and I prayed for healing fully believing that with God all things are possible. But unlike the people in this story, I was not healed. Was it a lack of faith that prevented my healing?? I don’t think so-everyday I prayed for strength and healing believing that all things are possible with God. This was not the case with the woman in this story who was healed just by touching Jesus’ robe. Seems so easy to me after my struggle for the same thing for me.
As the years have passed I have had to adjust and accomodate to the limitations placed on me by my illness and the stress it caused in my life. God in His wisdom allowed this disease to continue to keep me dependant on Him for strength for everyday of my life. Sometimes healing is not in God’s purpose for us-sometimes He says no to the gift of healing-this was my experience and it continues to this day. So to anyone else struggling in a similar situation,I feel I need to let you know that it is not your lack of faith that is keeping you from being healed-maybe we need to accept that God has different plans for different people and not everyone is meant to be healed. It is OK to accept that He has said no to you-no need to feel guilty because this gift of healing was denied to you. You are not an inferior Christian because God has different plans for your life than he had for the people in this passage. God allows suffering/illness in our lives for purposes that we may never understand but instead of being a curse-it could be a blessing!! Maybe we need to thank HIm for the thorns in life as well as the roses?????
Pat McRae says:January 16, 2014 at 11:33 am
So many people involved in today’s reading! It is definitely a portion of scripture to come back to and dig deeper into. So just skimming the top I have identified with 2 of the many characters.
1st is Jairus, a meeting-place leader. Why would this be noted in scripture? I believe God is saying not all the leaders were of the same thinking and to lump them as such is wrong. Jairus had a faith and a hope and he acted on that faith and hope. He is a dad and his little princess is dying. Not caring what others think or have to say, risking his position as a leader he goes to the one he knows can help and humbles himself to ask for that help. The word said he fell on his knees and begged. This is not the usual picture depicted in scripture of a leader, for in many places they are accused of taking high places and demanding the best. But Jairus seemed to know Jesus far exceeded his leadership role and willingly bowed to his superior. This is a daddy doing everything he can to save his child.
Next is the woman with the issue of blood. She has spent all she has to be well, basically came to the end of herself and now taking a huge risk enters a pushing and shoving crowd. Why? Because just like Jairus she has faith and hope in Jesus to heal her. Others are pushing and shoving just to be nearest to Jesus but she has a purpose and she is determined to have it fulfilled. She reached out in faith, believing one touch would be all it would take and she is rewarded. I have to wonder if she hoped she would be healed and able to quietly walk back through a crowd that had not recognized her freed from disease ready for life abundant. But no she is singled out. Why? I think there were others in that crowd who needed a touch from Jesus to heal their brokeness also. And Jesus wanted them to know that had you touched Me in faith it would be you who I would of set free also.
Today I am leaving with these thoughts. These two people both with needs no man could meet risked all to come to Jesus for help. They didn’t allow others to change their statements of faith or rob them of the hope within them. May I also remain true to my statements of faith and keep hope alive within me and always in all circumstances reach out to the one I know can changed a situation according to His good pleasure.