Anglican Morning Devotion for 10 September 2021 Anno Domini
A ministry of the Anglican Orthodox Communion Worldwide
“And, behold, there cometh one of the rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name; and when he saw him, he fell at his feet, 23And 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. 24And Jesus went with him; and much people followed him, and thronged him.”
(Mark 5:22-24; all scripture quoted is from the King James Version)
If necessity is the mother of invention, so is action the product of urgent want. Jairus is a synagogue leader – a member of the Jewish clergy. Perhaps for political concerns for his position, he obviously had not before sought out the Lord Jesus Christ. But due to the changing fortunes of life, Jairus found himself in need of a Savior who possessed the power of healing which no other man possessed. Jairus had a tender twelve year old daughter lying deathly ill as Jesus returned from the country of the Gadarenes to the shores of Galilee. In the tortured mind of Jairus, political status meant nothing in the face of the danger this disease posed for his cherished little daughter. He would submit himself to the One for whom he had shown no favor or friendship in times past. He sought out the Lord Jesus Christ and immediately fell at His feet pleading for Him to come and heal his little daughter. Such love pains for a daughter will force a man to cast away pride and doubt in order to satisfy the need for healing.
The plea was urgent. There was nothing casual about the need of Jairus for a quick response to his pleading. A man loves his wife and sons, but an innocent little daughter can move a man’s heart far more than any other. Jairus knew that Jesus could heal his daughter, yet he had never approached Jesus until the need was horrific. We, unfortunately, often respond to pain and danger in the same manner. Our last option too often is to seek the mercy of God in the face of trials and trouble.
But there was another who demanded the attention of Christ on the way. Jairus must have been on pins and needles as Jesus addressed the needs of the woman taken with an issue of blood. After the woman was healed, Jairus received word from his household that his daughter was indeed dead. How pitiful was the soul of Jairus. Perhaps his daughter could have been healed were it not for the Lord’s delay. The timing of God in answering our prayers often does not comport with our own desired timing. But Jairus was respectful still to the Lord. The servants of Jairus insisted that he no longer trouble Jesus for his daughter who had passed. What is a man to do under such circumstances. Jesus beheld the misery in the face of Jairus and His compassion was moved for him. He softly spoke to Jairus: “Be not afraid, only believe.” (Mark 5:36) What strange words were these to Jairus. What was the point? His daughter was now dead. Hope was forlorn in the mind of Jairus. Do not fear when the Lord is at hand – “only believe!” How simple, yet so hard!
Death in the ways of the Lord is not the same as with man. Death is a sleep for a time, but there will always be a rising from the deathbed. Our souls may see through a glass darkly today, but at the day of resurrection we shall see clearly. Our loved ones who die in the Lord are not dead, but only sleep for a time. “And he suffered no man to follow him, save Peter, and James, and John the brother of James. 38And he cometh to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and seeth the tumult, and them that wept and wailed greatly. 39And when he was come in, he saith unto them, Why make ye this ado, and weep? the damsel is not dead, but sleepeth.” ( Mark 5:37-39) Jairus had little enough faith to believe that Jesus could heal, but raising his daughter from the dead was another proposition. The funeral attendees had already gathered at the home of Jairus and were carrying on with the funeral dirge when Christ arrived. What a sad and hopeless lot. Just as Lazarus slept for four days in the tomb, so this daughter of Jairus. No one present suspected the power of Christ to make alive. Is it not so today? “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.” Mark 5:40) Men ridicule those of faith today in like manner. These men knew death when they saw it, but Christ knows LIFE!
Jesus put everyone out of the death room but the parents. He is reticent to perform His miracles among unbelievers. “And he took the damsel by the hand, and said unto her, Talitha cumi; which is, being interpreted, Damsel, I say unto thee, arise.” (Mark 5:41) Jesus tenderly took the child by the hand and told her to arise. Even the dead hear the voice of the Lord. The damsel arose immediately. “And straightway the damsel arose, and walked; for she was of the age of twelve years. And they were astonished with a great astonishment.” The parents were shocked at this demonstration of Divine Power. Now, Jesus told them to give the lass something to eat and to tell no man – a shocking counsel given that there was a multitude outside who knew of the girl’s death who was now alive. Why? Because when Christ does such an amazing work in us, we can not hold our peace though he commands it.