While he was still speaking, someone from the ruler’s house came and said, “Your daughter is dead; do not trouble the Teacher any more.” But Jesus on hearing this answered him, “Do not fear; only believe, and she will be well.” And when he came to the house, he allowed no one to enter with him, except Peter and John and James, and the father and mother of the child. And all were weeping and mourning for her, but he said, “Do not weep, for she is not dead but sleeping.” And they laughed at him, knowing that she was dead. But taking her by the hand he called, saying, “Child, arise.” And her spirit returned, and she got up at once. And he directed that something should be given her to eat. And her parents were amazed, but he charged them to tell no one what had happened.
Comment: I doubt if any doctor on their way to an emergency likes to hear that they shouldn’t waste their time coming as the patient is already dead. And I guess you’d be extra sad if you had been on your way in such a situation but then delayed.
Jesus overheard the message delivered to Jairus. As recorded Jesus said ‘Do not fear; only believe, and she will be well.’ It was asking a lot to expect the man not to be fearful. The people of that era had lots of experience of death and they knew when someone was dead!
As I hear Jesus saying that she wasn’t dead but sleeping I wonder why he said that. If she wasn’t really dead then the story tells us nothing of importance. Jesus knew how to wake a sleeping child, so what! But, on reflexion, maybe Jesus wanted to hear their emphatic declaration of her death or maybe the rumour mongers would have spread the word – well, there really was nothing to it, she was only taking a rest and he woke her up. Nothing to it.
But they were emphatic; the parents, who had watched her dying, were amazed; as were, no doubt, the watching crowd who had been so certain of her death, when she walked out alive.
We’ve heard of His power over all sorts of illness, over nature but now even over death! Dare I believe it and not walk into ‘La-la’ land?
Prayer: Dare I believe that this is all true, for if so, it means that Jesus was/is a very un-ordinary person?
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