SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
- This chapter tells the story of a man who was demon possessed. Although we tend to think of this as something that only happens in horror movies, many people around the world have seen or experienced demon possession today. How is this possible and why isn't it prevalent in America today? The Bible makes it clear that there really is a Satan and evil spirits who are working against God and against us. Perhaps Satan knows that people in an industrialized society don't typically believe in an unseen spiritual world, and he wants to keep it that way. As Keyser Soze said in the movie The Usual Suspects, "The greatest trick the devil ever played was convincing the world that he did not exist."
- In verse 21 we see a man by the name of Jairus begging for Jesus to heal his daughter. Before they even get to his home, she dies. However, Jesus raises her back to life. It is interesting to note that Jesus asks them not to tell anyone about the miracle he performed. He does this 7 times in the book of Mark. He was trying to protect himself from the crushing crowds that flocked him wherever he went. And he also understood that healing people did not automatically make them believers.
- We are introduced to a woman who had been very sick for 12 years. By just touching Jesus' clothes, she is immediately healed.
- Once again, we see Jesus healing people from all kinds of problems. The man from the tombs wanted to follow Jesus wherever he went, but Jesus wanted him to go tell everyone how much He had done for him. God still calls us to share what he is doing in our lives with others.
- Jairus' daughter was healed because of the faith of her father. Sometimes the prayers of others can bring the healing that we need.
- The sick woman was healed because of her faith. She fought through the crowd just to touch Jesus, believing it was what she needed to be healed. This is the kind of faith Jesus is looking for in us. We need to fight through anything that keeps us from being close to him.
- Notice in all the stories that not only does Jesus restore the physical health of the person, but he also restores their hearts and their relationships. Jesus said the two greatest commandments are to love God and love people. God wants us to be reconciled first to him and then to others.
NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
- God wants you to share what he's doing in your life with others. Who is a person you could share that with this week? When and how will you do it?
- Is there someone you could pray for this week that might be going through a hard time? Maybe it will be your prayers that get them through their crisis.
- What is standing in the way of your relationship with Jesus? Do you have faith to fight through it so you can be touched by him?