Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Daily Reading: Luke 8v40-56 'Glimpsing God's kingdom'

Jesus didn't just restrict himself to one sort of people, his ministry wasn't mono-culture, and we see that here.  Jairus was a well to respected synagogue leader, the woman (whose name we are not even told) unclean by the standards of the day.  Yet both come to Jesus, both are examples of faith in action  and both are recipients of Jesus grace and mercy as he heals and resurrects.

What connects the two incidents and the people is faith in Jesus.  The woman is an example of faith, her every attempt to be healed has failed, twelve years suffering at the hands of various doctors and treatments but to no avail, you can imagine her despair.  Her crushing sense of isolation and uncleanness.  Then she hears of Jesus, goes to see him and presses her way through the crush of the crowd determined that even just touching his cloak will be enough to heal her.  And it does.

But why does Jesus stop?  Let's be honest with our hurry hurry, busy, busy, overfilled and over scheduled lives we'd be with the disciples.  "Master all the people are crowding and pressing against you."  We can't tell and this is urgent.  But Jesus stops, Jesus tales time out, because that is what compassion does.  Compassion isn't just content to have this lady healed, Jesus wants her to know his touch and understand what Jesus really brings.  "Daughter, your faith has healed you.  Go in peace."

Can you imagine Jairus' excitement as he watches this, but also his impatience.  Jesus healed her he can heal my daughter bit will it be in time?  (49)Brings tragic news.  But again Jesus takes time out to deal with Jairus "Don't be afraid; just believe, and she will be healed."  With the evidence of faith in front of him Jairus is exhorted to faith that Jesus ban raise even the dead.

Luke stresses the amazing nature of Jesus call to faith and his actions as we see the reaction of the crowd, death has claimed her there is no going back, so they laugh at Jesus words.  But death has to listen to the word of Jesus, the Lord of Life has power over death.  Jesus gives a glimpse of the kingdom he comes to bring, a kingdom where sickness and death is no more, a kingdom which we enter and receive the blessings thereof by faith.

Faith is belief put into action, it is lived out, it takes Jesus at his word and sees the world according to his words.

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