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Matthew 9:18-26: The Issue of Blood

Posted by adventbiblestudy on November 7, 2011


Matthew 9:18-26 MKJV While He spoke these things to them, behold, a certain ruler came and worshiped Him, saying, My daughter has just now died. But come and lay Your hand on her and she will live. (19) And Jesus arose and followed him. And so did His disciples. (20) And behold, a woman, who had a flow of blood for twelve years, came up behind Him and touched the hem of His garment. (21) For she said within herself, If only I shall touch His robe, I will be whole. (22) But turning and seeing her, Jesus said, Daughter, be comforted; your faith has saved you. And the woman was saved from that hour. (23) And when Jesus came into the ruler’s house and saw the minstrels and the people making a noise, (24) He said to them, Go back, for the little girl is not dead, but sleeps. And they laughed Him to scorn. (25) But when the people were put out, He went in and took her by the hand, and the little girl arose. (26) And this report went out into all that land.

Reference texts: Mark 5:22-43, Luke 8:41-56.

 

Jesus woke up long before sunrise to pray. His connection with His Father prepared Him for the events of the day. Such a close connection provided information He needed to share. It was up to Jesus to look for the opportunities God had placed in motion long before the beginning of the day.

During a light breakfast with everyone sharing the meager necessities they had carried with them, Jesus began to teach. Many of the disciples thought this was a strange subject to share at this particular time of the day, considering the subject He had shared the day before.

That morning Jesus taught a subject which made some of his disciple feel uncomfortable. “God does not want you to be troubled. He has sent you a message of hope. The dead do not praise God, nor do any who go down into silence. For in death there is no memory of You; in the grave who shall give You thanks? For the grave cannot praise You, death can not rejoice in You; they who go down into the pit cannot hope for Your truth. You hide Your face, they are troubled; You take away their breath, they die and return to their dust. His breath goes forth; he returns to the earth; in that very day his thoughts perish. But God will redeem my soul from the hand of the grave; for He will take me. Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and look on the earth beneath; for the heavens shall vanish away like smoke, and the earth shall become old like a garment; and its inhabitants shall die in the same way. But My salvation shall be forever, and My righteousness shall not be broken.” Psalms 115:17, Psalms 6:5, Isaiah 38:18, Psalms 104:29, Psalms 49:15, Psalms 146:4, Isaiah 51:6

 

As Jesus was teaching He noticed a man dressed in costly robes running down the road. This seemed quite unusual. Watching the scene Jesus knew something must be wrong. He interrupted His lesson for a moment to hear the man inquire, “is Jesus here? I heard Jesus was here. Can you take me to Him? This is urgent.” Jesus’ followers quickly pointed out their teacher to the rich Jewish ruler.

Less than a day ago Jairus had been discussing ways to do away with Jesus and His teaching. He had seen Jesus teach once, but it did not seem to make an impact on him. When he reported what he saw with his eyes and heard with his ears to the Pharisees, he had a simple explanation for every act of healing Jesus performed that day. Up until today the ruler had been working hard to discredit Jesus and prove His acts of healing were nothing more than a hoax. Jairus had witnessed wonders from Heaven, but his faith was blinded.

Although Jairus had a great deal of influence tearing him away for the truth, in his heart he kept asking the same question, “how much evidence do you need?” He kept fighting the question flooding his mind, countering with questions of his own, “how can everything I have been taught be wrong? How can one man change the beliefs of a nation?”

Everything changed for the rich ruler that day. After spending a long day debating ways to do away with Jesus, the man headed for home. He could hear the cries of agony from a distance. Suddenly one of his servants turned the corner and ran to him saying, “master, your daughter is sick, very sick.” The words cut his heart like a hot knife. Jairus began to feel sick himself. His emotions and thoughts changed in a moment. Anguish filled his face, as he asked, “what is wrong with her, when did it happen? How did it happen?” He did not wait for an answer, but ran home as fast as his legs would carry him.

Jairus arrived home out of breath, his heart beating hard, and a pain in his side like he had never experienced before. Just when he felt he had passed his threshold of pain, the site of the still body of his daughter magnified his grief beyond measure. The pain only increased when he hugged his only daughter and felt the heat of her fever. He laid her back down observing her faint, shallow, and irregular breathing. Instantly images of the time they spent together raced through his mind. He broke down in agony and cried at her bedside.

A few moments later the rich ruler of the synagogue sprang to his feet and raced out of the house. He knew exactly where Jesus was based on the reports from the spies watching Him. The death of his daughter removed pride from his heart. He no longer cared what people thought as he ran through the streets in his royal looking robes.

Finding Jesus, Jairus fell before Him on his knees, praising Him, making mention of everything he saw, and now believed. He pleaded with Jesus, “My daughter is sick with a fever near death, come and lay Your hand on her and she will live.’ The seeds planted by Jesus were now taking root. For this man it took a trial of a life time. Jesus could see the anguish and desperation in his face. The man looked at Jesus’ face, praying for evidence that He was the Messiah, the Promised One. While Jesus looked down at the man, He prayed to His Father that others would open their hearts before having to face such a trial. All it took was one touch from Jesus. He placed his hand on the man’s shoulder. Taking this as a sign of acceptance, the man took Jesus’ hand, stood, and began leading Jesus to his home where his daughter lay. His disciples with most of the others followed.

 

Traveling along the road was rather quick. Some people ran ahead to announce Jesus’ coming. The city streets became crowded and difficult to pass through. John and James took the lead followed by Jesus. The other disciples followed close behind. Progress was slow as numerous people crowed near to touch Jesus.

One woman stood motionless in the crowd, not sure what she should do. She had spent all her savings trying to find a cure for her aliment. It was a woman’s problem which was looked down upon by the Jewish community based on Leviticus 15. Too often one part of scripture is taken and scrutinized while the heart of the Bible is over looked. In this case, the woman viewed her problem as a curse. She had spent so much time washing and providing sacrifices required for her cleansing. She had spent all her money on doctors, and others claiming to posses a power to cure.

She heard about Jesus, but never saw Him. All her faith was based upon reports from others. Every word she grasped upon with a feeling of hope. Now that Jesus was near, her mind became a battle ground between faith and doubt. The closer Jesus came, the more unclean she felt. With Jesus only a few feet away, she covered her face and turned away. She thought to herself, she had no business making Jesus unclean. She could not bring herself to doing anything like that.

Just as Jesus was passing by, she felt of muscles tighten, her face flushed as she felt uncomfortable hot flashes. She prayed to God, let it be your will, heal me. With her eyes closed she turned around, faced the crowd, and dropped face down to the ground, holding her hands out to soften the blow of the hard pavement. Her body bumped into someone on the way down, which deflected her fall just a bit.

Matthew helped the woman to her feet. She quickly turned around and tried to loose herself in the crowd. As she was bumping around from person to person, she felt a warm sensation inside. She felt different, something she had not felt for twelve years. She knew she was healed. Suddenly she did not want to get away. She turned around, and Jesus was right in front of her.

Jesus felt the power go out of Himself. He stopped, turned to one side and said, “who touched my garment?” Peter said to Him, “You see the crowd pressing on You, and do You say, Who touched Me?” Jesus looked over each face in the crowd in front of Him. His eyes rested on the woman, now trembling on the outside, but at peace on the inside. She dropped to her knees in front of Jesus and said, “forgive me Lord, I was the one who touched you. I wanted to be healed, and you were my only hope. I had suffered from a issue of blood for twelve years. I tried everything. The priests could not help me. I tried all the physicians I could find. No one could help me, but Jesus, you healed me with one touch” Jesus helped her to her feet, looked into her eyes full of tears, some of grief, others from joy. Jesus said to her, “be of good comfort: thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace.”

 

The experience lasted for only a moment, Jesus felt a tug on His garment, while Jairus asked, “did you forget about my daughter?” As he finished his question Jairus felt a tug on his robe. It was his servant again. This time it was impossible not to notice the tears on the face of his servant. Expecting the worst Jairus asked, “what is it?” After taking a moment to compose himself his servant spoke up, “your daughter has died, there is no reason to bother the Teacher.”

In a moment Jairus’ high hopes were dashed to pieces and ground into the dust. He felt a pain more severe than the first. Jesus shared his pain. He put His arms around Jairus and whispered in his ear, “Do not be afraid, only believe.” Jesus held him up as they completed the journey to the rich rulers home.

Long before they reached the house, cries from the mourners could be heard over the noise of the crowd. As the cries swept over the crowd, the conversations ceased.

When they arrived, Jesus looked over the scene of professional mourners practicing their trade. They were weeping and crying out loud, pulling at their clothes and beating upon their chests in a show of passionate sorrow, Jesus thought to Himself, if only this much energy would be put into praising God. Arriving at the door, Jesus asked the mourners to leave. They questioned Him, “why should we leave? Are you trying to take our wages away from us” Jesus calmly said, “Why do you make a tumult and weep? The girl is not dead, but sleeps.” In an attempt to discourage the mother and father from asking for any help from Jesus, they laughed at Him. Jesus quietly cleared the room and brought in Peter and James, John, and the father and the mother of the child. Jesus took the child’s hand and said to her, “Talitha koumi;” (which interpreted is, Little girl, I say to you, Arise!) And instantly the little girl arose and walked (for she was twelve years old ). And they were astonished with a great astonishment. And He strictly warned them that no one should know this. And He said, “give her something to eat.”

Jairus and his wife knelt down and hugged their little daughter. Peter, James, and John stood looking over at Jesus as He watched the scene in front of them. To Jesus this was a vision of the resurrection when families will once again be united as one forever. Jesus looked over at His disciples knowing they did not fully understand the lesson. Jesus was looking forward to the day all of these memories would come back to their minds, when they would see with a perfect understanding. One day they would come to realize God’s power, the love that brought this family together. This family symbolized all the familles that will reunite in Heaven.

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