Jesus Always Responds to Faith


Mark 5:21-36
21 Jesus got into the boat again and went back to the other side of the lake, where a large crowd gathered around him on the shore. 22 Then a leader of the local synagogue, whose name was Jairus, arrived. When he saw Jesus, he fell at his feet, 23 pleading fervently with him. “My little daughter is dying,” he said. “Please come and lay your hands on her; heal her so she can live.”
24 Jesus went with him, and all the people followed, crowding around him. 25 A woman in the crowd had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding. 26 She had suffered a great deal from many doctors, and over the years she had spent everything she had to pay them, but she had gotten no better. In fact, she had gotten worse. 27 She had heard about Jesus, so she came up behind him through the crowd and touched his robe. 28 For she thought to herself, “If I can just touch his robe, I will be healed.” 29 Immediately the bleeding stopped, and she could feel in her body that she had been healed of her terrible condition.
30 Jesus realized at once that healing power had gone out from him, so he turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my robe?”
31 His disciples said to him, “Look at this crowd pressing around you. How can you ask, ‘Who touched me?’”
32 But he kept on looking around to see who had done it. 33 Then the frightened woman, trembling at the realization of what had happened to her, came and fell to her knees in front of him and told him what she had done. 34 And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace. Your suffering is over.”
35 While he was still speaking to her, messengers arrived from the home of Jairus, the leader of the synagogue. They told him, “Your daughter is dead. There’s no use troubling the Teacher now.”
36 But Jesus overheard[d] them and said to Jairus, “Don’t be afraid. Just have faith.”


“Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. “ Ephesians 3:20
12 years. This woman suffered for 12 years. She spent everything she had and had only grown worse, not better. The woman would have been considered “unclean”, not able to access the places of worship and even her presence in the company of loved ones would have risked their own “cleanliness”. So she suffered for years and she suffered alone. 

Can you imagine the state of desperation she would have been in. How long she must have cried out to The Lord for healing. How helpless she must have felt. 

So when the man, who was rumored to make the blind see and the lame walk, the one who is rumored to be God in the flesh came to town, of course she had to meet Him. If only she could just get close enough to touch the fringe of His robe. She would be risky and it might cost her, but if there was a chance she could be healed she had to take it. She was desperate.

Have you ever felt completely helpless?
Two individuals in this Holy encounter certainly did. Jairus, feeling helpless in the position of a parent unable to do anything to help his little girl. The woman, feeling helpless in the position of an individual who has tried it all, but still unable to help herself. Both experience the miraculous presence and power of Jesus as they move in faith toward Him. 

Ephesians 3:20 sums up faith as knowing that He Is Able to do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine, but knowing is so different than believing. I don’t know if you can relate, but I struggle with knowing what’s true, but often I grapple with paralyzing doubt and fear. Doubt that God won’t come through, answer, or provide. Fear that I am doing the wrong thing, or that or that this is the time that the other shoe will drop and everything will fall apart.
From this story, though, it seems that true faith is always followed by action.  

God ALWAYS responds to a position of desperate faith.

Desperation is a state of despair, one that results in rash or extreme behavior. Both Jairus and the woman act in a desperate faith. Jairus is a prominent religious leader. By all accounts, he should have had all the answers as the leader of a local synagogue. His desperation and helplessness moved him toward seeking Jesus to act on behalf of his daughter. Verse 24 is a beautiful depiction of the compassion of Jesus in response to this act of faith.
 “ He went with Him.”

On the way, Jesus has another opportunity to intervene in response to faith. The wonder of this passage is that of everyone pressing up against Him, it was her faith He recognized. Because God always responds to the desperate faith of His children. This is the only place in scripture that Jesus refers to someone as “daughter”. She knew He was able before she even experienced healing. 

The word helpless means the recognition of being unable to defend oneself or act without help. This is the Gospel. Ephesians 2:1 tells us we were “dead in our sin”. A dead person is the absolute epitome of helplessness. Then Jesus, because of His grace, raised us from the dead. Paul tells us that this isn’t by anything we have done or could boast about, but only because of His great love and mercy. The believer must every day choose to recognize how helpless we are apart from the generous grace of God. 

Action Step

It’s evident from both of these stories that faith is more than in the mind.
 Faith always requires action. The woman took a great risk coming out in the open when Jesus asked “ who touched me?” But it was this act that encouraged Jairus when he was told his daughter died. 

Consider sharing with a friend something you are praying in faith for right now. Ask them to believe and pray with you. 


Where are you desperate for God to move? Spend time today praying for God to act. Ask the Holy Spirit what He is calling you give up ? 
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