Sermon Follow Up - Week 22, 2022
“And when Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a great crowd gathered about him, and he was beside the sea. Then came one of the rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name, and seeing him, he fell at his feet and implored him earnestly, saying, “My little daughter is at the point of death. Come and lay your hands on her, so that she may be made well and live.” And he went with him. And a great crowd followed him and thronged about him. And there was a woman who had had a discharge of blood for twelve years, and who had suffered much under many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was no better but rather grew worse. She had heard the reports about Jesus and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his garment. For she said, “If I touch even his garments, I will be made well.” And immediately the flow of blood dried up, and she felt in her body that she was healed of her disease. And Jesus, perceiving in himself that power had gone out from him, immediately turned about in the crowd and said, “Who touched my garments?” And his disciples said to him, “You see the crowd pressing around you, and yet you say, ‘Who touched me?’” And he looked around to see who had done it. But the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came in fear and trembling 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 disease.” While he was still speaking, there came from the ruler’s house some who said, “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the Teacher any further?” But overhearing what they said, Jesus said to the ruler of the synagogue, “Do not fear, only believe.” And he allowed no one to follow him except Peter and James and John the brother of James. They came to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and Jesus saw a commotion, people weeping and wailing loudly. And when he had entered, he said to them, “Why are you making a commotion and weeping? The child is not dead but sleeping.” And they laughed at him. But he put them all outside and took the child’s father and mother and those who were with him and went in where the child was. Taking her by the hand he said to her, “Talitha cumi,” which means, “Little girl, I say to you, arise.” And immediately the girl got up and began walking (for she was twelve years of age), and they were immediately overcome with amazement. And he strictly charged them that no one should know this, and told them to give her something to eat.” (Mark 5:21–43 ESV)
What power does Christ have over the corrupting effects of sin in our world? From this story, we see that Christ has the power to heal the corrupting effects of sin in our world. And his power has not faltered in your life today. The same Christ who was at work in Jairus’ daughter and in this woman’s healing is at work right now in your life.
Gabriel shared the following three highlights from the example of Jairus and the woman in the above text:
(1) They heard about Jesus. This is something that is easy to pass over in this story, but it is too often overlooked in our lives as well. Neither Jairus nor the woman stumbled upon Jesus accidentally. These were not chance encounters with a stranger while they were walking down the road, though the Gospels are full of those. No, these two individuals had heard all about Jesus. They had been listening to stories of his miracles from their neighbors, and it was these stories that led them to find hope in Jesus.
Too often we fail to appreciate the value of hearing about the grace of God from those around us when we are dealing with our own struggles. We forget that our story does not exist in a vacuum. God has been and will continue working in the lives of his people. Throughout the Bible, we see example after example of the people of God recounting the works of God that have been manifested.
- In the open chapters of Deuteronomy, Moses introduces the covenant of God by reminding the people of God’s deliverance of them out of Egypt and through the wilderness.
- Psalm 136 recounts the history of Israel’s exodus as a way of reminding God’s people, “His steadfast love endures forever.”
- In Habakkuk 3, the prophet recalls in poetic verse the exodus of Israel and God’s deliverance from their enemies, even as he looks ahead to a time of exile and hardship for Israel.
- Hebrews 11 reminds the believers of God’s faithful working through a long line of saints to reveal his plan of redemption and the confidence they placed in God to bring about what he had promised them.
Again and again, the people of God tell of God’s works and his faithfulness for the purpose of reminding us that God has not forgotten us, and he is not powerless to act in our lives. I believe this is why Hebrews 3:13 tells us, “exhort one another every day, as long as it is called today, that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.” God did not design the Christian life to be walked independent of other believers. He has called us to be a part of a body of believers that exhorts one another, reminding one another of the grace we have experienced through Christ and the mighty works of God, lest we succumb to the deceitfulness of sin which leads us to hopelessness beneath its corrupting influence. If you find you are struggling to find hope in Christ, lean into fellowship with other believers and into the word of God that they might remind you daily of the work God has done and is doing.
(2) They had faith in Jesus. As we hear about the work God is doing in others, it ought to lead us to a place of faith. Faith in the ability of God to transform even the most dire situations we may be walking through. Neither of the people in this story came with full assurance that Jesus could really do anything for their situation; almost certainly Jairus’ faith perished before they even reached the house, yet what faith they had was transforming. They had to be brought to a place where they had no other hope before they placed their hope in the one who could do the most for their situation.
If you are struggling against painful situations and mounting hopelessness, contemplate the cross and the character of the man who died on it. Jesus is not callous to your hardships, nor is he distant from them. He is at work in them. In Paul’s second letter to the Corinthians, he writes to them of the extreme hardships he has been facing. He writes in his introduction,
“For we do not want you to be unaware, brothers, of the affliction we experienced in Asia. For we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again.”
God has not left you alone in the midst of your struggle. Do not fear, only believe.
(3) They came to Jesus. It is one thing to say we believe Jesus has the power to work in impossible situations, it is quite another to run to him (and his promises) when our marriage is on the rocks, or when our addiction has overtaken us again, or when your relationship with your child or a parent seems beyond hope of repair. When we have reached the end of our hope, who do we run to? How ready are we to submit to Christ in the midst of our mess when it all seems so far gone? Coming to Jesus when we are broken, empty, and unclean takes a great deal of humility. But we are promised, “God gives grace to the humble.”
- Take time to listen. Get together with another follower of Christ and listen to their faith story. Ask good questions and listen with expectancy that you will hear of the faithfulness of God at work in their lives. Who will you get together with?
Go to one of the following links and search for one of the many testimonies that are available to listen to. To see the activity of God in other’s lives and to gain a fresh awareness of the activity of God in your own life.
- Take time to consider. How has God proven himself faithful in your life? Sit down with a pen and begin documenting those memories of God's faithfulness in your life in the past. If you have a spouse, and/or a family, take tiime to consider together all the many ways you've seen God work in your life/lives.
- Take time to tell. Tell of the faithfulness of God in your life to others when asked, or even when not asked if the situation allows for it. Take the time to encourage others, and remind yourself, of the faithful provision and care of God through the years.
Elevation and Maverick City