Fifth Sunday after Pentecost:
June 27, 2021
First Reading 2 Samuel 1:1, 17-27
Second Reading 2 Corinthians 8: 7-15
Gospel Mark 5:21-43
“Do not fear, only believe” verse 36
Once a poor Chinese woman went up to the foothills to cut grass.
Her baby was tied to her back, and a little child walked beside her.
Just as she reached the top of a hill, she heard a roar. Frightened, she turned and saw a mother tigress
springing at her, followed by her two cubs.
The illiterate woman had never attended school or church, but a missionary once told her about “Jesus” who is able to help you when you are in trouble.
” As the tiger’s claws tore into her arm, the woman cried out, “O Jesus, help me!”
The tiger, instead of attacking again, suddenly turned and ran away.
Gospel Reading: Mark 5:21-43
In this chapter of Mark, we have two different stories of Jesus’ healing of two daughters of Israel that are intertwined with each other. Desperate and Interrupted
Let’s use some of our imagination
“Jesus” can see another large crowd waiting for him as he crosses the sea of Galilee. Some have come just to see him, follow him, touch him, and some want to see what the fuss is all about! With the healer and the teacher, they have heard about. One of these waiting in the crowd is Jairus. He is walking back and forth, pacing and pacing, we don’t know how long he was waiting…
The boat caring Jesus, is a speck in the sea of Galilee…as he watches and watches…it gets a little bigger and bigger, but he can’t make out the faces…is that him? Oh…the anticipation of it all…could it go…. any slower???
“Jesus” has arrived!
We have learned that not all Jewish leaders disliked Jesus and one of these leaders of the synagogue is Jairus. Jairus a man of influence and prestige… undoubtedly was prominent in the community, and he falls at Jesus’ feet. The Greeks and Jews were often reluctant to do so, because it could be construed as worship. Nevertheless, Jairus falls at Jesus’s feet and begged him repeatedly…. “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.”
Lay your hands on her!
Laying hands on someone to bless them was an ancient, Biblical practice.
Jairus, is this synagogue official, has been challenged by his feelings and fear but! he is going to trust in the “Lord Jesus” to spare the life of his critically ill daughter.
Without delay, Jesus starts to go with Jairus…he has this crowd following him and pressing against him, but wait he is interrupted….
Jesus will have to ask Jairus to hold on to his ‘faith”, there is a woman who has been hemorrhaging for 12 years. This woman of great faith knows she can’t just walk up to Jesus and ask him for help!!! she is unclean by Jewish standards. She was a woman of great means and has spent all she had on physicians and different remedies for that period of time, nothing helped and now she is worse off, she is unclean, anyone who touches her is unclean, and worse, she cannot worship in the temple. In order for her to come up to Jesus, like Jairus did, she would have needed to be companied by a male figure, husband, bother, uncle. But this woman showed her great faith in-trusting, all she needs to do is…. to reach out and touch the hem of Jesus’ garment…. a secret healing, She talks to herself… I can’t just walk up to the teacher…the healer… but I will find a way to touch His garments.
She was among this large crowd and as Jesus was on his way to Jairus’ house, the women bent down and touched the edge of his hem and the power of God went through Jesus and she was made well… after 12 years of suffering.
Jesus immediately stopped…to Jairus surprise!
“Who touched My clothes?” His disciples, in disbelief just as Jairus was, they said,
“You see the crowd pressing in on you; how can you say “Who touched me?”
Jesus looks around…he sees her…he already knew who she was, Jesus knows us already. The unnamed women had taken nothing from Him…but He had given healing to her. In fear and trembling, she fell down before him, and told him the whole truth. “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace and be healed of your disease.” “While He was still speaking” words of affirmation and confirmation to the daring women whose “faith” had made her well.
Jairus….got the bad news from the leader’s house, to say “Your daughter is dead, why trouble the teacher now?”
Jairus’ world “just changed” …His daughter is dead!
Jesus overhears this and said to Jairus….” Do not fear, only believe”
He only allowed Peter, James, and John to go with him and leaving the crowd behind he continued on to the home of the synagogue leader. Outside Jairus’ house, was the people crying and wailing loudly… When he enters, He “said” to them “Why do you make such a commotion and weep? The child is not dead but sleeping.”
They laughed and mocked Jesus, so he put them out, why should they witness the power of God.
Jesus… in front of her father and mother and the three he brought with him, he takes the girls hand and “said” to her,
“Talitha cum,” which means, “little girl, get up!” And immediately the girl got up and began to walk about. They were overcome with amazement. “He” ordered that no one should know this and told them to give her something to eat.
Has fear like Jairus or Shame like the women who was bleeding… ever stopped you from going to Jesus in prayer? We are faced every day with choices and difficult decisions. We cannot replace our “faith” with fear…
The Chinese women in the beginning…. cried out “Oh Jesus…help me!” Because she listened to the missionary, and her faith protected her.
Jesus’ healing of the two daughters of Israel, Jairus came with influential means to ask Jesus to save his daughter and the unnamed women who was bleeding for 12 years had nothing left,
“Jesus” helped them both…with love and respect because of their faith.
The unnamed women…who I will call the “Daughter of Faith” she was at the tail-end of hope…what did she have to lose… at this point? She has been through it all, she now will live by faith…and touch the hem of his clock.
Jesus, tells her…” Daughter your faith has made you well.”
Jairus…he has to trust in the Lord Jesus…. and he had to have great patience’s,
he was waiting with the crowd for Jesus to come…desperate he finely falls on his knees.
Our good news
Faith is more powerful then fear and Fear is not an option over Faith.
We have been given the gift to trust in believing in God’s promises, trusting God and knowing that we are saved through our relationship with Jesus Christ and we have nothing to fear.
Many of us have been faced with doubts, fears, worry, loneliness and despair…when we are faced with difficult times…we have God’s promise that Jesus Christ will never leave us or forsake us and to be with us always.
When you have these challenges, fall on your knees, pray and ask Jesus for help, turn it all over to him and believe…. have “Faith”.
The Rev. Lola Culbreath