Luke 8:40 (NIV) 40 Now when Jesus returned, a crowd welcomed him, for they were all expecting him.
On verse 40: In the verses just before this the people of the Garasenes rejected Jesus and told him to go away. Here another crowd is expecting him and welcoming him. Likewise, we too need to choose: will we be among those who reject Jesus and push him away, or will we welcome Jesus into our lives?
Luke 8:41-42 (NIV) 41 Then a man named Jairus, a ruler of the synagogue, came and fell at Jesus’ feet, pleading with him to come to his house 42 because his only daughter, a girl of about twelve, was dying. As Jesus was on his way, the crowds almost crushed him.
On verses 41-42: Why would God allow a 12 year old girl to go through such suffering? Those who believe in the law of Karma would say, “It’s her fault. She must have done something bad in this life or in her previous life.” New age proponents would say, “There is no such thing as evil or anything negative here. This suffering is simply maya, an illusion.” Atheists would say, “There is no God because how can there be a good, loving God if suffering and evil exist?” But the Christian response is this, “Evil and suffering are real, but God is real too, and whenever God allows suffering, it is not because God is not there or doesn’t care, but ultimately because God has a greater purpose in mind and a greater story He is writing in and through our lives.” We’ll get to see that greater purpose and story unfold in just a little while.
Luke 8:43-44 (NIV) 43 And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years, but no one could heal her. 44 She came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak, and immediately her bleeding stopped.
On verses 43-44: This woman realized that she was desperate because no doctor she consulted could heal her. That’s when she literally reached out for Jesus and experienced Jesus healing her. May you and I always remember that we are hopeless and helpless without Jesus, that we need Jesus more than we even know. It is in this posture of humility and hunger for God that we will experience God’s power.
Luke 8:45-48 (NIV) 45 “Who touched me?” Jesus asked. When they all denied it, Peter said, “Master, the people are crowding and pressing against you.” 46 But Jesus said, “Someone touched me; I know that power has gone out from me.” 47 Then the woman, seeing that she could not go unnoticed, came trembling and fell at his feet. In the presence of all the people, she told why she had touched him and how she had been instantly healed. 48 Then he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace.”
On verses 45-48: I believe Jesus already knew the answer to his question “Who touched me?” before he even asked it. He just wanted the woman to acknowledge it herself. So “in the presence of all the people” (v47), she tells her story. When God does a great thing in your life, very often it’s not just for you, but it’s to bless and encourage others too. So be willing to share with others what God has done in your life.
Luke 8:49-50 (NIV) 49 While Jesus was still speaking, someone came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue ruler. “Your daughter is dead,” he said. “Don’t bother the teacher any more.” 50 Hearing this, Jesus said to Jairus, “Don’t be afraid; just believe, and she will be healed.”
On verses 49-50: In Luke 7:50 Jesus told the woman who poured perfume on his feet, “Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.” In Luke 8:48 Jesus tells the woman who was healed of her disease, “Your faith has healed you. Go in peace.” Now Jesus tells Jairus, “Don’t be afraid; just believe and she will be healed.” What can we learn from this? Faith is the key we need to access to God’s saving and healing power in our lives. Believe in Jesus, trust in His Word, rely on his power, and you will experience Him.
Luke 8:51-55 (NIV) 51 When he arrived at the house of Jairus, he did not let anyone go in with him except Peter, John and James, and the child’s father and mother. 52 Meanwhile, all the people were wailing and mourning for her. “Stop wailing,” Jesus said. “She is not dead but asleep.” 53 They laughed at him, knowing that she was dead. 54 But he took her by the hand and said, “My child, get up!” 55 Her spirit returned, and at once she stood up. Then Jesus told them to give her something to eat.
On verses 51-55: Notice that Jesus did not let anyone go in with him to see Jairus’ daughter except Peter, John and James, and the girl’s parents. I believe there is a lesson here for us: In your most difficult and pressure-filled situations, it matters who you surround yourself with and whom you allow to influence your thoughts. Just as God likes to work in an atmosphere of faith and uses people with faith, surround yourself with people who have a faith-filled, hopeful and positive outlook on life. Be careful not to be too influenced by those who habitually speak negative, faithless, and hopeless words. Like Jesus did here, sometimes you need to shut the door temporarily on those who speak without faith, so that you won’t be distracted or discouraged by their lack of faith.
Luke 8:56 (NIV) 56 Her parents were astonished, but he ordered them not to tell anyone what had happened.
On verse 56: Why did Jesus order the girl’s parents not to tell anyone what had happened? Why would Jesus go out of his way to make the bleeding woman share her story and then tell Jairus and his wife not to say anything about how Jesus raised their daughter back to life? I don’t know for sure. It could be that in this case Jesus was protecting the girl and her parents, not wanting them to receive any unhealthy attention from outsiders. Sometimes – not all the time, but sometimes – God does good things in our lives which are just between us and God, just like how the apostle Paul received an incredible vision but God told him not to tell but to keep it to himself (2 Corinthians 12:4). It goes to show that God doesn’t just perform miracles and exercise His power to show off. God does miracles out of genuine love and compassion for those who are suffering.
Lord Jesus, thank You that nothing is impossible for You. Holy Spirit I need You and I welcome You into my life. Do everything that You want to do in me. May I have faith to believe in You even when things seem hopeless, knowing that You are writing a greater story than anything I could write. In Jesus’ name, AMEN!