Fr. Kurian KollapallilLast week we heard the power of Jesus manifested over the windstorm that obeyed and stilled at the command of Jesus. “For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities– all things have been created through Him and for Him” (Colossians 1:16). This week in the gospel we see Jesus’ power manifested over the illness and the most fearful enemy death.

He healed the woman who suffered from hemorrhage for 12 years. According to the Jewish law of the time, if this woman touched anyone, she made him or her ceremonially unclean. This uncleanliness did not allow them to take part in any aspect of Israel’s worship (Leviticus 15:19-31). By the very law of her people, she was divorced from her husband, and could not live in her home; she was ostracized from all society, and must not come into contact with her old friends; she was excommunicated from the services of the synagogue, and thus shut out from the women’s courts in the temple. The woman was in a desperate condition with her long illness, she was treated by many doctors and she spent all her wealth. She risked breaking all the social rules to seek what she believed Jesus could do for her. her Faith in the healing power of Jesus was so strong. From the crowd secretly she touches the hem of Jesus’ garment. “Immediately she felt in her body she was healed.” Jesus instead of reprimanding her, calls her affectionately “daughter.” Jesus established a relationship with her and gave her the assurance that she was healed: “Daughter, your Faith has saved you.

She went to the doctors to get better, but only suffered worse, and became poorer. Doctors were helpless but her faith in the power of Jesus healed her and made her whole. It was an immediate cure, she was not in need of continuous medication or therapy. When a person is sick today, they often go to different doctors and spend a great deal of time and money, only to suffer many things from many physicians. Sick people may go to a “Doctor of Entertainment,” but find no cure. They may pay a visit to “Doctor Success” but he is no help in the long run. “Doctor Pleasure,” “Doctor Self-Help,” or “Doctor Religion” can’t bring a real cure, only “Doctor Jesus” can. According to the thinking of the day, when this unclean woman touched Jesus it would make Him unclean. But because of the nature of Jesus and the power of God, that wasn’t how it worked. When she touched His garment, Jesus wasn’t made unclean, instead the woman was made whole. When we come to Jesus with our sin and lay it upon Him, it doesn’t make Him a sinner, but it makes us clean. The woman came before Jesus and told the whole truth. When we come to Jesus, we must tell Him the whole truth, nothing we hide is hidden before him.

Jairus, the synagogue official knew that only Jesus could heal his daughter. He also had   a firm superstition in his mind, believing that the healer had to be present. So he pleaded , “to heal my daughter, You have to come and lay Your hands on her.” As Jesus sent the woman to her house, Jairus received the shocking news of the death of his daughter. But Jesus insisted on going to Jairus’ house and consoled the father saying, “Do not be afraid; only have Faith.” The phrase, “Do not be afraid,” appears in the Bible 366 times. Those who greeted Jairus at his home were professional mourners who wailed, beat their breasts, tore their hair, and rent their garments. There were also flute players who played funeral dirges. The crowd told Jairus: “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the teacher any further?” But Jesus assured the crowd: “The child is not dead but sleeping,” meaning that the girl’s death was only temporary, and she would wake up at his call. Jesus took the parents of the little girl with only Peter, James and John into the room, took the child by the hand and said to her, “’Talitha koum,’ which means, ‘Little girl, get up!’” Those who had laughed Jesus to scorn must have been greatly amazed when they realized Jesus’ power.

Jesus would have nothing to do with these people who don’t believe His promises. He drove them out so that they would not discourage the faith of Jairus. Jesus spoke to a dead girl as if she were alive, and He did this because He is God. Romans 4:17 says that God gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did. Jesus spoke to this girl with the power of God and she was raised from the dead. Jesus didn’t fail Jairus, and He didn’t fail the woman who needed healing. But in ministering to both, He needed to stretch their faith extra far. All who were helped by his miracle of mercy had one thing in common, namely, they were motivated by faith in him and trusted fully in his mercy and power. In the case of unnamed woman it was her faith made her touch him and her courage made her to accept the transformation in her and in Jairus’ daughter, it was the relatives and friends of the girl who showed the faith and confidence in Jesus.

“The same everlasting Father who cares for you today will take care of you tomorrow and every day. Either He will shield you from suffering or He will give you unfailing strength to bear it. Be at peace then and put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginations.” St. Francis de Sales