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Mark 5: Only Believe

posted Oct 15, 2012, 10:02 AM by solomon yang

Jairus came to Jesus distressed, distraught, and desperate. His little girl was dying. So when he got wind of Jesus’ whereabouts, he was determined to get to Him. No matter what. As usual, there was a huge crowd gathered around Jesus. You could hardly see Jesus at all. People were pressing against one another everywhere, trying to catch a glimpse of Jesus. Jairus probably didn’t know how he was going to get to Jesus. But he did. Somehow. Desperation can be a powerful motivation.

When Jairus got to Jesus, he fell as His feet and begged Him earnestly, saying, “My little daughter is at the point of death. Come and lay your hands on her, so that she may be made well and live” (5:23). Begging wasn’t something a ruler of the synagogue did. Begging was way beneath the dignity of that distinguished office. But when you’re child is dying, who cares about your dignity? As a ruler of the synagogue, Jairus probably had many people beg him for money, for mercy, and for prayer. “Could you pray for...?” Now that his girl was dying, Jairus found himself desperately begging a relatively unknown “rabbi” with no known pedigree, training, or credentials for help. But when you’re desperate, you’re not too proud to seek and receive help, wherever it may be found.

While Jairus was making his way back home, with Jesus beside him and hope in his heart, he received a devastating news. “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the Teacher any further?” (5:35) Jairus probably didn’t hear anything beyond “Your daughter is dead.” Those words hit him like a semi-truck running over a bike. Jairus is utterly crushed. His hope dashed. Evaporated. Gone. His worst fear had come true. His baby girl was dead.

But do you hear what Jesus says? “Do not fear, only believe (5:36). “Don’t tell me to not fear! What do you know about fear?” angry Jairus could have said. “Believe what? My daughter is dead!” cynical Jairus could have said. But apparently, Jairus embraced Jesus’ words of hope and followed Jesus home where his daughter was. And before he could agonize over his dead daughter, Jairus was amazed. At Jesus’ word, “the girl got up and began walking” (5:42). By believing in Jesus, Jairus saw the unbelievable.

Jesus is still inviting us to life of faith, to live by faith, saying, “Do not fear, only believe.” It’s not that He is unaware of your situation. He knows. That’s why He’s calling you to “only believe.” Rather than being overwhelmed by your situation, He wants you to trust in your Savior.

Are you anxious about life, about your future, about your parents, about your kids, about school, about work, about money, about finding someone to share life with? Jesus says, “Do not worry, only believe.”

Are you afraid of all the “what ifs”? “What if I can’t find a job? What if I can’t find someone? What if I get laid off? What if my kids get sick? What if there’s an accident? What if I fail? Why if it doesn’t work out? What if...?” Jesus says, “Do not fear, only believe.”

Believing in Jesus doesn’t mean we’ll get what we want. But it does mean we’ll get what He wants for us. If we know Jesus at all, that gives us peace where there should be panic. Confidence in the midst of crisis. Hope against all odds. Do you believe?