Jesus’ Power to Heal
When Jesus had again crossed over by boat to the other side of the lake, a large crowd gathered around him while he was by the lake. Then one of the synagogue rulers, named Jairus, came there. Seeing Jesus, he fell at his feet and pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.” So Jesus went with him.
A large crowd followed and pressed around him. And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering.
At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”
“You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?'”
But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it.
Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.” (Mark 5:21-34)
This dramatic scene opens with a large crowd gathering around Jesus. A synagogue ruler–Jairus–humbly approaches the Lord, falling at His feet. He earnestly pleads for the Healer to place His hands upon his dying darling daughter–the apple of his eye–so that she will be made whole and live. In desperation, Jairus openly begs for healing, believing Jesus possesses the achieving power to make her well. And our Lord lovingly consents.
What parent would not do likewise when their child is physically sick? But what about when your child is spiritually sick? Are we as earnest then? The spiritual health of our children is of far greater value and importance than their physical well-being.
On their way to heal Jairus’ daughter, we find Mark abruptly changing the focus. A woman desperate for relief clandestinely approaches the Jesus in hopes of merely touching His cloak for her healing. In faith she reasons, if she can simply get close enough to touch the hem of His garment she will be freed from her misery. She holds a strong faith in the achieving power of Christ to heal her. For twelve long years she has sought help from many, yet she’s only grown worse. An outcast from society–much like a leper–she is considered ritually “unclean” because of her condition. She is excluded from normal social interactions. But, she does not allowing the crowds to hinder her pursuit. She inches closer to the Healer. She desperately reaches out for just a touch of His cloak. And as she connects with the hem of His cloak, immediately, Scripture says, her body is freed from her suffering.
At once, we are told, Jesus realizes achieving power had gone from Him and He turns towards the pressing crowd asking in tenderness, “Who touched my clothes?” Jesus’ question seems ridiculous to His disciples considering the great throngs around Him all seeking to get close to Him. Yet this does not hinder the Lord’s searching eye. He wants to commend and encourage her faith. Falling at His feet and trembling with fear, the poor woman presents herself to the One who made her whole. Our Lord tells her it was her faith–not His garment–that healed her.
Take It to Heart
Paul’s prayer in Philippians is a great prayer to humbly and boldly pray over those we love as well as for ourselves:
And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ–to the glory and praise of God. (Philippians 1:9-11)
God promises us His peace when we turn to Him!
You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you. (Isaiah 26:3)