Come to Jesus. When we say, “Come to Jesus,” we speak not as the world understands. To those perishing, “Come to Jesus,” according UrbanDictionary (a profane resource, but one that shows the spirit of this age) is, “Getting called on the carpet, dressed down, or otherwise chewed out in a sever manner; to not necessarily using religion, to tell the truth.” Coming to Jesus is judgmental, scary, negative. But for us, coming to Jesus, is returning to Him Who made us; it’s discovery of healing; it’s being freed from suffering.
Come to Jesus. “When Jesus had again crossed over by boat to the other side of the lake, a large crowd gathered around him while he was by the lake” (Mk. 5:21). The crowd gathered for various reasons. Some wanted to be healed, some wanted to learn, some wanted to have Him tickle their intellects, others wanted to scrutinize and judge Him, others wanted to enjoy the whole spectacle. The crowd gathered for diverse reasons, some good, some neutral, and some bad. Coming to Jesus isn’t simply gather around Him, like the crowd. Crowds gather and crowds disperse: “The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stands forever” (Is. 40:8).
Come to Jesus. “Then one of the synagogue rulers, name Jairus, came there. Seeing Jesus, he fell at his feet, and pleaded earnestly with him, ‘My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live’ ” (Mk. 5:22–23). Jairus didn’t come to the lake to gather around Jesus; rather, he came with a purpose. Jairus pleaded with Him: “May your mercy come quickly to meet us, for we are in desperate need” (Ps. 79:8). Jairus was not interested in casual observation of the Rabbi, nor in stimulating discussion with Him about this or that interpretation of the Law, nor even in his own relationship to God. All that mattered at that moment was Jesus laying His hands on his daughter and healing her.
The woman also came to Jesus, but through another route. She was part of the crowd, perhaps attracted by the commotion. “When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak” (Mk. 5:27). She didn’t know who Jesus was, but when she found out that He was a healer (of the demoniacs, of fever, of various diseases, leprosy, paralysis; even His disciples were given authority to drive out demons), she felt the urgency. She wove her way through the crowd, pressing on toward her goal.
After you’ve come to Jesus, that’s not the end. Walk with Jesus to your problem. “So Jesus went with him” (Mk. 5:24). It seems rather straightforward, but had Jairus not returned home, Jesus would not have entered it to heal his daughter. Yet I regularly fall down on this most basic act. I pray to God, “Help my nephew to overcome his anxieties,” and then I go along my merry way and fail to bring Jesus to my nephew. Jesus can come to heal on His own and He will be near those who are bowed down who call upon Him, but if we’re going to take the initiative and go to Him, we must be prepared to participate in the efforts.
And how marvelous is that? Jairus, not only could please with Jesus to heal his daughter, but he was able to lead Him into his house to the very side of her bed. Jairus participated in his daughters healing. With out his part, the Lord would have been back in the crowd beside the lake.
Likewise, the woman came up behind Jesus and didn’t stop there. “She touched his cloak” (Mk. 5:27). She might have pushed and shoved and gotten, not simply behind Him, but right up in front of Him, and just stared at her feet waiting for Him to do something. I too sometimes struggle with this; when the Lord shows me what I’ve done, I feel so stupid. Haven’t we all struggled with a problem—be it sickness, or broken relationship, or finances—and we pray to the Lord for Steve’s cancer, for Carol’s strength, for the lost people at the office, yet neglect to ask God for what we really need? Maybe I’m the only one? We push and shove all through the crowd up to Jesus, and then stare at Him and wait for Him to do something. But the woman reached out her hand. By that act she said, “Be merciful to me Lord, for I am faint; O Lord, heal me, for my bones are in agony” (Ps. 6:2).
Come to Jesus, walk with Jesus, then be not afraid but have faith in Jesus. Jesus agreed to go with Jairus to “put [his] hands on her so that she will be healed and live” (Mk. 5:23). Yet following the delay while the woman was healed, the girl died. “While Jesus was still speaking, some men came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue ruler. ‘Your daughter is dead,’ they said. ‘Why bother the teacher any more?’” (Mk. 5:35). Jairus’ heart sank. What happened? “Ignoring what they said, Jesus told the synagogue ruler, ‘Don’t be afraid; just believe’” (Mk. 5:36). The Lord agreed to come and heal her. The promise seemed impossible now. Jairus never imagined that this would happen. Jesus didn’t lie to Jairus; He wasn’t leading him on.
The Lord is fully able to heal all of our infirmities, even death. Jesus called for Jairus to believe once more. Jesus never promised that she wouldn’t die first. He never said that there wouldn’t be setbacks along the way. The Lord told his disciples, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (Jn. 16:33). When I have asked God to help me better balance my life of work and ministry and family, I know that He is with me on the way, but reports come that my hopes are in vain and at times failure seems insurmountable. But in those dark times, the Lord says, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.” He reminds me why I came to Him in the first place. The road home, the journey to healing, is progressive, not instant, and, like any journey, there will be roadblocks, detours, accidents, and flat tires. But through all of these, Jesus does not leave our side and He has not changed His mind that He would save us.
The woman came to Jesus with faith. “She thought, ‘If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed’” (Mk. 5:28). Her brief knowledge of Jesus was enough. She had wasted her life’s savings away on every other healer; here was a man who’s healing required nothing but the touch of a hand. His very person was the cure, not an incantation, potion, or ritual; Jesus is the cure.
Come to Jesus, walk with Jesus, have faith in Jesus, and go with Jesus into the very chamber of death. The commotion at Jairus’ home would have been perceived before they arrived. The sound of flutes and crying and wailing meant that the worst really had taken place. “Don’t be afraid; just believe,” He had said. Believe what? What now? “If you have faith as small as a mustard seed…” (Mt. 17:20); Jairus faith had shrunk so far. If his heart sank when he received the news, now it was crushed. Still Jairus walked on with Jesus and they entered the home.
Jesus now commanded the situation; Jairus, heartbroken, had fulfilled his responsibility, he had been man enough. Jesus removed the signs of hopelessness, the faithlessness of the world. These were no longer needed. “After he put them all out, he took the child’s father and mother and the disciples who were with him and went in where the child was” (Mk. 5:40). Jairus needed the Lord’s presence to enter this shadowy place. No remedy of man could now avail his daughter. Any entry into the room without Jesus would have been dark and bleak and wretched. With Jesus, the room still was canopied with the sleep of death, but there was a light, a light that the darkness could not overcome (cf. Jn. 1:5). It is exceedingly hazardous to enter the dark places alone. But Jairus entered with his wife and Jesus and his disciples. We never should attempt to tackle death in our lives except in the immediate presence of Jesus, and with those of His followers present.
When we bring Jesus to the scene of defeat, He brings power such that even those insurmountable mountains become passable, and the overwhelming enemy is defeated. “He took her by the hand and said to her, ‘Talitha koum!’ (which means, ‘Little girl, I say to you, get up!’). Immediately the girl stood up and walked around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished” (Mk. 5:41–42). The Lord, without great fanfare or effort, simply reaches down to the girl’s deathbed, and calls her to rise up back to life. And she stood up! Aneste. As in, Christos aneste, alethos aneste. Christ is risen, he is risen indeed! Resurrection! The father and mother were astonished with great astonishment. When Jesus promises to do something, He does it. While we may be astonished, this is the power of God, “…who alone does great wonders” (Ps. 136:4).
If someone you love dearly needs the touch of Jesus, He is waiting. The road for you to bring Christ to them may be long and riddled with setbacks, but He is with you through them all, and He will speak to your fears and bolster your faith. So come. Come to Jesus, walk with Jesus, have faith in Jesus, and go with Jesus into the places of death, so that He can bring resurrection there.