Sunday, June 28, 2015

Mark 5:33-36 (RSV): Having Faith Amid the Tumult

Mark 5:33-36 (RSV): Having Faith Amid the Tumult
But the woman, knowing what had been done to her, came in fear and trembling and fell down before [Jesus], and told him the whole truth.  And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace, and be healed of your disease.”

While he was still speaking, there came from the ruler’s house some who said, “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the Teacher any further?” But ignoring what they said, Jesus said to the ruler of the synagogue, “Do not fear, only believe.”

Jesus’ power over death and illness is apparent in this passage from Mark’s gospel. Christ rids us of the disease of sin and eternal death, and this happens through his atoning love on the cross. Since it is Christ’s work that saves us, are we, then, automatically liberated and made righteous before God? Jesus unfolds the answer throughout this passage, for he says, “Your faith has made you well” and “Do not fear, only believe.”  Both statements point us to the necessity of an active faith in Christ, a faith that goes beyond simply saying to the depths of heart-felt belief. We must have faith, therefore, especially in the most troubling conditions such as death and chronic disease. Both the hemorrhaging woman and the synagogue official show their undying faith in Jesus’ healing power, and their prayers are answered according to their faith and God’s will.
Their stories could have ended differently, though.  The hemorrhaging woman could have continued to spend her earnings on more doctors and false healings, and the synagogue official could have listened to the people from his house who proclaimed his daughter’s death. Instead, they choose to seek Christ through the tumult and noise of the world and have faith in his healing, life-giving touch. In our day-to-day living, let us do the same.
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May you all be blessed and encouraged in the love and peace of Christ.