Mark 5.21-34

As soon as Jesus had returned by boat to the other shore, a great crowd once more gathered around him. While he was by the lakeside, the president of one of the synagogues came up, Jairus by name, and when he saw him, threw himself down at his feet and pleaded with him. “My little daughter,” he said, “is at death’s door. I beg you to come and lay your hands on her to cure her and save her life.” So Jesus went with him, accompanied by a great multitude which pressed upon him.

Among them was a woman who had suffered from hemorrhages for twelve years; and in spite of long treatment by doctors, on which she had spent all she had, there had been no improvement; on the contrary, she had grown worse.

She had heard what people were saying about Jesus; so she came up from behind in the crowd and touched his cloak, for she said to herself, “If I touch even his clothes, I shall be cured.” And then and there the source of her hemorrhages dried up and she knew in herself she was cured of her trouble.

At the same time Jesus, aware that power had gone out of him, turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”

His disciples said to him, “You see the crowd pressing upon you and yet you ask, ‘Who touched me?’ “

Meanwhile he was looking around to see who had done it. And the woman, trembling with fear when she grasped what was happening to her, came and fell at his feet and told him the whole truth.

He said to her, “My daughter, your faith has cured you. Go in peace, free forever of this trouble.”

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2 responses

  1. In this story Mark has Jesus teaching the meaning of faith. It’s not the belief in any set of intellectual propositions as many would have it. It’s an awareness of the general beneficence of God. We get close to him (her), and we’re cured of any of the ‘diseases’ that afflict us all. You have to believe that of course, about the loving fatherhood of God, and you have to realize that you have access to it like the woman did. If you can touch God you’ll be healed.I don’t believe Jesus was God per se, but that’s what he represented to the woman, and to multitudes since then.

  2. I was harping earlier on the difference between power and authority — and that Jesus’ calming the sea was an exercise of authority not power. This transfer of virtue — strength/grace flowing from God through Christ to the woman — is clearly about power not authority — and power in the sense of energy. Something perceptable has been transferred here.

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