Mark Chapter 5 Continued
Mark 5:21 “And when Jesus was passed over again by ship unto the other side, much people gathered unto him: and he was nigh unto the sea.”
“Unto the other side”: Jesus and the disciples returned to the northwest shore of the Sea of Galilee.
We assume that this was Capernaum, because it was across the sea. This is on the edge of the Sea of Galilee, as we said before. Probably, the people were aware that Jesus would return here and were awaiting Him. At any rate, it didn’t take long for a crowd to gather.
Mark 5:22 “And, behold, there cometh one of the rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name; and when he saw him, he fell at his feet,”
The synagogue officials were those who presided over the elders of local synagogues. Those elder groups, made up of lay officials, were in charge of arranging the services and overseeing other synagogue affairs.
A synagogue ruler was a layman who helped oversee and plan the synagogue services, and also saw to the care of the building. Jairus may have had previous contact with Jesus, who attended synagogue regularly.
We see here, one of the elders of the church came to Jesus. “Jairus” means “he will illuminate”. This was a very difficult thing for someone from the Jewish synagogue to do. He humbled himself to Jesus to save his daughter’s life. The same account in Matthew says she was even now dead. The account in Luke said she lay dying.
At any rate, her condition was hopeless unless Jesus intervened. The love of this parent overcame all the fear of his friends’ laughter. Jairus had seen the miracles in the synagogue and he knew that just one touch from the hand of Jesus did miracles. He wanted his daughter to live and he had come to Jesus as a last resort.
Mark 5:23 “And besought him greatly, saying, My little daughter lieth at the point of death: [I pray thee], come and lay thy hands on her, that she may be healed; and she shall live.”
The laying on of hands was commonly associated with healing.
Mark 5:24 “And [Jesus] went with him; and much people followed him, and thronged him.”
“Thronged” stresses that people were physically being pushed up against Jesus (see verse 31).
We see here, that the instant Jesus stepped out into the street, the people surrounded Him. The word had traveled far and wide that Jesus was healing and doing all of these miracles.
Mark 5:25 “And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years,”
“Issue of blood”: Denotes a chronic internal bleeding, perhaps from a tumor or other disease (see note on Matt. 9:20).
Mark 5:26 “And had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse,”
“Suffered many things … many physicians”: In New Testament times, it was a common practice in difficult medical cases for people to consult many different doctors and receive a variety of treatments.
The supposed cures were often conflicting, abusive and many times made the ailment worse, not better. Luke the physician (in Luke 8:43), suggested the woman was not helped because her condition was incurable.
This same account of this woman’s illness in Luke said that she had spent all of her money trying to find a cure for this hemorrhaging. This had been going on twelve years and she had given up on help from the physicians. Her only hope was Jesus.
Mark 5:27-28 When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment.” “For she said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole.”
“If I may touch but his clothes”: The woman’s faith in Jesus’ healing powers was so great that she believed even indirect contact with Him through His garments (see note on Matt. 9:20), would be enough to produce a cure.
Popular belief had it that a person’s dignity and power extend to what he wears.
She felt unworthy for Him to touch her since she was a Gentile woman; but she felt if she might just touch His garment, she would be healed. Her faith was great. Her faith had brought her, in her weakened condition, to be in this crowd that she might touch His garment.
Perhaps the delay was so Jairus’ daughter would be dead, and Jesus would show His power to resurrect the dead.
Mark 5:29 “And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in [her] body that she was healed of that plague.”
“Fountain of her blood”: The source of her bleeding, with the analogy being to the origin of a spring.
The instant she touched Him, she was healed. She was expecting healing and she received it when it came.
Mark 5:30 “And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes?”
“Virtue had gone out of him”: Christ’s “power”, His inherent ability to minster and work supernaturally, proceeded from Him under the conscious control of His sovereign will.
“Who touched my clothes?” Jesus asked this question, not out of ignorance, but so He might draw the woman out of the crowd and allow her to praise God for what had happened.
Jesus is immediately aware that God has exercised His power “(virtue),” through Jesus. The woman’s faith has been rewarded.
Jesus knew that healing virtue had gone out of Him. He asked who had received healing. You know there were masses around Him who wanted to be healed. We might ask ourselves why God chose her to heal. It was because of her great faith. Faith pleases God. Jesus felt the healing power of God surge out of Him.
This is so interesting, because so many touched Jesus physically; they were pressed all around Him. Only one touched into His healing power. Her touch was a touch of faith, knowing within herself that one touch would make her whole. Healing is a spiritual gift, but many times it comes with a physical touch of the hand. This touch was the act of faith that it took to activate the miracle.
Mark 5:31 “And his disciples said unto him, Thou seest the multitude thronging thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me?”
The disciples express impatience or annoyance, perhaps resenting Jesus’ delay at a critical time for Jairus’ daughter.
We see that Jesus wanted her to publicly proclaim this miracle. She felt as if maybe Jesus would not have bothered with her if she had asked, and she had received this blessing kind of without permission. She was not aware that Jesus would heal or save whosoever will.
Mark 5:32-33 “And he looked round about to see her that had done this thing.” “But the woman fearing and trembling, knowing what was done in her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth.”
The woman would be fearful of a rebuke, since her bleeding rendered her “unclean” according to Jewish law. She ought not to have been mixing in the crowd, nor reaching out purposely to touch a man.
That she owned up openly indicates that her interest lay not only in physical health: she wanted to be right with Jesus Himself. Her faith, not the grasp of her hand, brought restoration to her.
This reminds me of the Scripture (in Romans 10:9). We not only must receive Jesus in our hearts, but confession with the mouth is made unto salvation. She must proclaim this miracle to keep it. Confession is good for the soul, and she had done just that here.
Mark 5:34 “And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague.”
“Thy faith hath made thee whole”: Jesus’ public statement concerning the woman’s faith (expressed in verses 28, 33), and its results.
The form of the Greek verb translated “has made you whole”, indicates that her healing was complete. It is the same Greek word often translated “to save” (see note on Matt. 9:22), and is the normal New Testament word for saving from sin, which strongly suggests that the women’s faith also led to spiritual salvation.
We see here again, that the woman’s great faith was what attained her healing for her. The King of Peace spoke peace to her. It appears that this sickness she had, had been a judgment from God (plague). At any rate, she was forgiven and freed from the plague.
Mark 5:35 “While he yet spake, there came from the ruler of the synagogue’s [house certain] which said, Thy daughter is dead: why troublest thou the Master any further?”
Obviously, Jesus has intentionally let the time pass in which He might have preserved the girl’s life.
In the midst of Jesus’ ministering to the woman with the issue of blood, we see the men come to tell Jesus that Jarius’ daughter was dead. There must be an impossibility before there can be a miracle. Here they tell Jarius, don’t bother Jesus any further, your daughter is dead.
Mark 5:36 “As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, he saith unto the ruler of the synagogue, Be not afraid, only believe.”
“Believe,” literally: “Keep on believing.” The verb is a command for present, continuous action urging Jairus to maintain the faith he had initially demonstrated in coming to Jesus. Christ knew there was no other proper response to Jairus’ helpless situation and He was confident of faith’s outcome (Luke 8:50).
We see again, that Jairus was a high official in the synagogue. Jesus reminded him not to doubt, but believe. This was asking a very difficult thing in the sense that in the flesh she was dead. The Spirit can quicken the dead however.
Mark 5:37 “And he suffered no man to follow him, save Peter, and James, and John the brother of James.”
“Peter, and James and John” were also chosen to witness the Transfiguration (9:2).
This is the first time Mark gives special status to these 3 disciples. Scripture never explains why these men were sometimes allowed to witness things that the other disciples were excluded from (9:2; 14:33), but the trio did constitute an inner circle within the 12. Even the Greek grammar implies this inner grouping by placing their 3 names under one definite article.
Here again, we see these three chosen out for special things. If Jesus had favorites, these three were them. These three were about to see in action that Jesus had power over death.
Mark 5:38 “And he cometh to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and seeth the tumult, and them that wept and wailed greatly.”
Professional mourners would be already singing dirges and raising a stir.
“Wept and wailed”: In that culture, a sure sign that a death had occurred. Because burial followed soon after death, it was the people’s only opportunity to mourn publicly. The wailing was especially loud and mostly from paid mourners (see note on Matt 9:23).
The mourning had already begun. Jesus saw all of this crying and commotion in the house.
Mark 5:39 “And when he was come in, he saith unto them, Why make ye this ado, and weep? the damsel is not dead, but sleepeth.”
“Is not dead, but sleepeth”: With this figurative expression, Jesus meant that the girl was not dead in the normal sense, because her condition was temporary and would be reversed (see note on Matt. 9:24; John 11:11-14; Acts 7:60; 13:36; 1 Cor. 11:30; 15:6, 18, 20, 51; 1 Thess. 4:13-14).
The girl was in fact dead (verse 35). But Jesus knows her death will be reversed.
We learned, in another account, that this girl was about 12 years old. Jesus was actually telling these people that breathing life into this child again was nothing for Him. He is life.
Mark 5:40 “And they laughed him to scorn. But when he had put them all out, he taketh the father and the mother of the damsel, and them that were with him, and entereth in where the damsel was lying.”
“Laughed him to scorn”: This could more literally be translated, “laughing at him” or “were laughing in His face.” They understood Jesus’ words literally and thought they were absurd, so “laughing” most likely refers to repeated bursts of laughter aimed at humiliating the Lord.
This reaction, although shallow and irreverent, indicates the people were convinced of the irreversible nature of the girl’s death and underscores the reality of the miracle Jesus was about to do.
“Put them all out”: This was an emphatic, forceful expulsion which showed Christ’s authority and was done because the disbelieving mourners had disqualified themselves from witnessing the girl’s resurrection.
Then He took Peter, James, John and the parents to the bed where the young girl was lying.
Mark 5:41 “And he took the damsel by the hand, and said unto her, Talitha cumi; which is, being interpreted, Damsel, I say unto thee, arise.”
“Talitha cumi”: Mark is the only gospel writer who recorded Jesus’ original Aramaic words. “Talitha” is a feminine form of “lamb,” or “youth.” “Cumi” is an imperative meaning “arise.” As in other such instances, Jesus addressed the person of the one being raised, not just the dead body (Luke 7:14; John 11:43).
We see here, the power of life flowing through Jesus’ hand to this child. The power of life and death is in Jesus’ hands. Eternal life and death is in His hands as well.
Mark 5:42 “And straightway the damsel arose, and walked; for she was [of the age] of twelve years. And they were astonished with a great astonishment.”
Telling her age tells us that this girl was not a baby, but fully old enough to walk. You can imagine how surprised they were when this supposedly dead girl arose and walked.
Mark 5:43 “And he charged them straitly that no man should know it; and commanded that something should be given her to eat.”
“No man should know it”: Knowledge of the miracle could not be completely withheld, but Christ did not want news of it to spread until after He had left the area, because He knew such news might cause His many Jewish opponents in Galilee to seek Him out and kill Him prematurely.
He also wanted to be known for bringing the gospel, not as simply a miracle-worker. Jesus was no doubt concerned that the girl and her parents not be made the center of undue curiosity and sensationalism.
The crowd would eventually know, of course, that the girl had been raised from the dead. Jesus wants the fact to be concealed for the time being, giving Him time to depart and avoid ostentatious acclaim.
Also, the parents will still be able to keep the details of the resuscitation secret from the scornful unbelievers outside the door. Jesus’ custom all along was to make Himself known to earnest seekers, but to conceal His true identity from skeptics.
In another gospel, they were instructed to give her meat. They were not to spread the word. However It would be hard to conceal since so many were there mourning her death and now she was alive.
Just as on resurrection day when all who are in their graves shall hear His voice and come forth, these rejoicing parents had seen their daughter hear His voice and come forth. It will be next to impossible not to tell this wonderful story.
Mark Chapter 5 Continued Questions
1. Where did Jesus go when He left the demoniac man?
2. Who was the ruler of the synagogue who came to Jesus?
3. What show of emotion did he show to Jesus?
4. What was his need?
5. What does Jairus mean?
6. How bad was the little girl?
7. Why did he come to Jesus for help?
8. What happened when Jesus entered the street to go to Jairus’ house?
9. How long had the woman had the issue of blood?
10. What had she previously done to get help?
11. What had she said within herself would heal her?
12. When she touched Him, what did Jesus feel?
13. What happened to the woman?
14. What question did Jesus ask that the disciples thought was strange?
15. When was she healed?
16. The woman, fearing and trembling, did what?
17. What made the woman whole?
18. What is a plague?
19. Why did they tell Jairus not to trouble the Master?
20. What two things did Jesus tell Jairus to do?
21. Which three disciples did Jesus allow to go with Him to Jairus’ house?
22. What did Jesus do with the onlookers, besides the three disciples and the parents?
23. What did Jesus tell them about the damsel?
24. What did Jesus do to the damsel to revive her?
25. What specific words did He say?
26. What happened?
27. How old was the little girl?
28. The power of life and death is in whose hands?
29. What further words did Jesus tell the parents about the girl, 2 things?