The Compassion of Jesus
Begin with prayer, opening your heart to God’s Word and Spirit.
Read Mark 5:21-24a, 35-43
Jesus Raises a Dead Girl and Heals a Sick Woman
21 When Jesus had again crossed over by boat to the other side of the lake, a large crowd gathered around him while he was by the lake. 22 Then one of the synagogue leaders, named Jairus, came, and when he saw Jesus, he fell at his feet. 23 He pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.” 24 So Jesus went with him.
A large crowd followed and pressed around him.
35 While Jesus was still speaking, some people came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue leader. “Your daughter is dead,” they said. “Why bother the teacher anymore?”
36 Overhearing what they said, Jesus told him, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”
37 He did not let anyone follow him except Peter, James and John the brother of James. 38 When they came to the home of the synagogue leader, Jesus saw a commotion, with people crying and wailing loudly. 39 He went in and said to them, “Why all this commotion and wailing? The child is not dead but asleep.” 40 But they laughed at him.
After he put them all out, he took the child’s father and mother and the disciples who were with him, and went in where the child was. 41 He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”). 42 Immediately the girl stood up and began to walk around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished. 43 He gave strict orders not to let anyone know about this, and told them to give her something to eat.
Both people in this story were desperate for Jesus’ help. One, Jairus, was a man whose means and importance could do nothing to save his critically ill daughter. The other was a woman whose bleeding had made her seen as unclean and unable to participate in the life of the religious community. For both, Jesus was their last hope. He responded to Jairus with encouraging words, despite negative voices, and restored his daughter to life. Jesus responded to the woman with healing power, calling her “daughter.” The woman and Jairus were vastly different people, but both were recipients of God’s profound grace.
Lord Jesus, we give you thanks that you are the Lord of life and Master over death and the grave. We praise you for the hope these truths bring. Take away our fear and help us to trust in you. Amen.