Saturday, December 11, 2010

Faith to be Healed

Mark 5:29 And immediately the flow of blood dried up, and she felt in her body that she was healed of her disease.

29 καὶ εὐθὺς ἐξηράνθη ἡ πηγὴ τοῦ αἵματος αὐτῆς καὶ ἔγνω τῷ σώματι ὅτι ἴαται ἀπὸ τῆς μάστιγος.

This is one of the stories that we cannot really grasp in our 21st century Gentile context.  Here was a woman who had some kind of discharge of blood.  Nobody is exactly sure what it was, but many think that it was menstrual.  This would cause both spiritual and physical problems for this woman.  Obviously it is not good if you bleed continually for years and years.  The spiritual problem is that the book of Leviticus makes it very clear that this woman was unclean.  The time of menstruation made a woman ceremonially unclean.  Therefore, she was constantly unclean.

She pressed through the crowd so that she could just touch Jesus' robe.  She did and as we see here the flow dried up εὐθὺς.  She instantly knew that she was better.  I cannot even begin to relate to how elated she must have felt at that time.

This story amazes me on a couple of levels.  First, it makes me wonder a little bit about relics.  Why was it that she had to touch Jesus' robe?  Was there any special power to it?  I don't think so.  I think that it demonstrates a practical outworking of her faith.  She knew that she needed Jesus and this was how she had to express it.  In other words, if we could somehow find that same robe I don't think we could take it to Duke and clear out the pediatric oncology ward.

The other amazing thing is that she could touch Jesus and He would not become unclean.  Anyone else would have become unclean, but not God.  The same goes for when He touches a leper to make him well.  The only time the stain of sin touched Jesus was on the cross.  We'll of course get to that in a week or two, but for now consider this.  Read through Leviticus if you have a few minutes and look at how exacting the laws for purification were.  Then consider that Jesus did not have to go through all those machinations.

We truly worship an amazing Savior.

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