In uncertain times, we may think that we know the will of Yahweh but, due to circumstances, may waver in our faith. Our faith might falter because life is generally not linear; life may take many twists and turns. We start out with great commitment, and then as different situations arise, we may wane in that zeal we had and not remain steadfast. We could also be like Jairus, a ruler in the synagogue, who remained faithful even after difficult challenges arose that affected his faith and his daughter’s life.
A powerful record in Mark 5 records Jesus raising Jairus’ daughter from the dead. The fortitude of Jairus in difficult circumstances is awesome and inspiring. Earlier in Gerasene, Jesus had finished healing a demon-occupied man and crossed the Sea of Galilee in a boat to the opposite seashore. A crowd quickly gathered around him.
Mark 5:22. And one of the synagogue officials, named Jairus, came, and upon seeing Him, fell at His feet...
Out from this crowd, came a man, Jairus, who worked as a ruler in a nearby synagogue. Jairus showed Jesus great respect by falling at his feet. This must have been quite a sight to behold. Being a synagogue ruler was a prestigious position, and Jesus was not respected by the Pharisees or rulers. Also, many of the religious rulers were afraid of Jesus and his influence on the people, so they tried to discredit him. Yet, this ruler prostrated himself before Jesus, and the entire crowd witnessed his respect.
Mark 5:23. …and pleaded with Him earnestly, saying, “My little daughter is at the point of death; please come and lay Your hands on her, so that she will get well and live.”
The record does not say how Jairus became aware that Jesus was healing those who were sick, but he certainly had faith that, if Jesus touched her, she would recover and stay alive. The concern Jairus must have felt propelled him to beseech Jesus to come to his home and heal her. Whether Jairus witnessed Jesus healing the sick or had just heard of it, Jairus had faith that Jesus was the one to heal her.
Mark 5:24. And He went off with him; and a large crowd was following Him and pressing in on Him.
There is no dialogue as to whether Jesus asked him any questions, such as how far it was to his house or how long has she been sick. Jesus walked with him, and the large gathering followed along pressing as close to Jesus as they could.
As they were going, a new situation happened, and someone who needed healing touched Jesus’ garment. A woman who was sick with an issue of blood for twelve years touched his hem and was instantly made whole. The next few verses tell of this incident of great faith (Mark 5:25-34). Even though this was an interruption in Jairus’ plan to go swiftly to his daughter, witnessing this miraculous healing must have really increased his faith in Jesus’ ability to heal.
I do think, putting myself in Jairus’ sandals as a parent, I would be impatient about the delay. Jesus stopped walking toward the ruler’s house to tend to the woman. Jairus had to wait while Jesus was helping someone else as his child was so close to death. Time was crucial! As Jesus was finishing ministering to the woman, people came to inform Jairus that all was over; the child had died. What occurred in a short time was Jairus became elated that Jesus was coming to heal his daughter; then there was a delay; he sees a miracle happen; and then he receives devastating news.
Mark 5:35. While He was still speaking, people came from the house of the synagogue official, saying, “Your daughter has died; why bother the Teacher further?” But Jesus, overhearing what was being spoken, said to the synagogue official, “Do not be afraid, only believe.”
What sinking, crushing words to hear! With all the excitement and commotion from the crowd and the woman, Jesus overheard this declaration and immediately addressed the new situation. He saw fear in Jairus and encouraged him not to fear but believe. What would you think at a time like this? Jairus held fast to his faith that Jesus would heal his daughter regardless of the news.
The walk to Jairus’ home must have been filled with so many thoughts and emotions for all. Their thoughts might have been such as–this walk is a wild goose chase, or could Jesus heal someone that was dead? Jesus immediately took charge. When they arrived at the home of the dead child, many family and friends were weeping
Mark 5:37-42. And He allowed no one to accompany Him except Peter, James, and John the brother of James. They came to the house of the synagogue official, and He saw a commotion, and people loudly weeping and wailing. And after entering, He said to them, “Why are you making a commotion and weeping? The child has not died, but is asleep.” And they began laughing at Him. But putting them all outside, He took along the child’s father and mother and His own companions, and entered the room where the child was in bed. And taking the child by the hand, He said to her, “Talitha, kum!” (which translated means, “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”). And immediately the girl got up and began to walk, for she was twelve years old. And immediately they were
Jesus allowed only the mother, father, James, and John (Luke 8:51) to go into where the child was. He told her to get up, and she did. Jairus had determined not to fear but believe what Jesus told him. They were all amazed, dumbfounded, and in shock.
The perseverance of Jairus to have faith, to believe, and trust that Jesus could and would heal his daughter is inspiring. There are many twists and turns to the journey that Jairus experienced. Beseeching Jesus to come to his home to heal his daughter began a series of events. Jairus did not let his position as ruler to stop him from being humble before Jesus. He did not allow the delay in getting to the house derail him with impatience nor allow the news that his daughter was dead to cause him to falter in his faith. Jesus Christ is the healer. Jairus knew this and was convinced in his heart of this truth.
The book of Revelation encourages perseverance to keep God’s Word unto the end (Revelation 2:3, 10, 19, 25; 3:3, 10, 11). Jesus always spoke what Yahweh wanted spoken. He always did what his Father told him to do. Jesus encouraged steadfast faith. The end result of holding firm was life for this young girl. It is important that we have faith in what Yahweh and Jesus will do. Sometimes we put our faith in our prayers, which is definitely misplaced. We have faith in Yahweh and Jesus, expressing that in our fervent prayers. We cling to the words of Scripture. Those words are truth. They are powerful. They teach us so we can have faith for Yahweh to deliver and heal us.
We will have many troubles and trials in life. They are inevitable. How we deal with them is the essence of the matter. We pray throughout to remain steadfast in faith until the end.
Revelation 3:11. I am coming quickly; hold firmly to what you have, so that no one will take your crown.