The Edge of His garment – part 3

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Luke 8 v 50. “Don’t be afraid: just believe and she will be healed”.

We now focus on Jairus who has become frantic with concern as Jesus stops to deal with the woman who had an issue of blood. But now it appears that it is too late. Jesus has waited too long. The girl has died. But is it too late? This father was told by Jesus “Don’t be afraid just believe and she will be healed”. This is an amazing lesson. Jesus was not calling for faith in some kind of kindly cosmic benevolence. Instead he was deliberately using this man’s sad crisis to illustrate this particular aspect of salvation –the need for true faith in Him. To us it appears too late.

Why did Christ not heal the girl from a distance as he did the centurions servant? He could certainly have done so. But if he had done so the girl would have been saved merely from dying – not from death itself. And in these stories Luke wants us to see different aspects of Christ’s salvation. The son of the widow of Nain was saved from death to teach us not to take salvation for granted. The story here, regarding this young girl was different. Although she was dead, Christ insisted she was asleep. Why was this? Not as some supposed, to indicate what happens to us when we die. There is no teaching in the bible of the sleep of the soul. That is not what Jesus meant. It was the body, not the soul that appeared to be “asleep”, a metaphor used by Christians ever since. No! Jesus used these words to indicate that this young girl’s parting was not the end. There is another phase of salvation which will occur when the Lord returns and awakens dead bodies from their sleep of death (1 Thessalonians 4 vs 14-17).

You may remember Jesus did something similar with Lazarus (in John 11 v 11). He waited for Lazarus to die than went to Bethany to awaken him out of his sleep. This was a foreshadowing of the great resurrection of the dead at the second coming.

Thus this young girl’s death and subsequent bringing to life again is a pointer to the fact that death does not end it all. Her father was asked to believe that. How confusing, bewildering it must have been for these parents. And what incomprehensible joy when their child was restored to them. A very faint glimpse of the joy that awaits all true believers.

But there is still one issue. Why all the secrecy? Why tell them not to tell anyone. How was it going to be kept a secret? The girl would soon be seen again, so why this admonishment?

Well, that is the way of the Gospel. It is a secret but it is an open secret. It is a mystery but an open one. Some understand, some do not. And here the mystery is illustrated by this miracle.

The call to you is not to understand everything before you believe, but to trust Christ no matter what your circumstances so that you may in the end experience His great blessing.

Here are great Gospel principles. The girl is dead, like our souls and spirits are to God. It seems that Jesus is too preoccupied with other things. But faith is in the picture, through her parents. And the miracle happens.

Faith in Christ is the key to salvation.

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