Summary: This sermon examines three stories of faith as found in 2 Samuel 1:1, 17 - 27 and Mark 5: 21 - 43.
Mark 5: 21 – 43 - A Dead Girl and A Sick Woman
2 Samuel 1:1, 17 - 27
Intro: This week has been a particularly difficult one for me. It seemed as though every time I started one project or task something or someone would interrupt and I was off in a different direction. That’s sort of how I feel about these two scripture passages. They don’t seem to have anything in common. Even within the Mark passage there are two stories, one interrupting the other. Writing a sermon this week seemed an almost impossible task as well. There just wasn’t enough time in each day and I kept thinking to myself, “how am I going to put these two passages together and preach a meaningful sermon on the Sunday prior to the 4th of July?
I. The Old Testament passage is about David lamenting the death of two of his friends: Saul, the king of David’s country and Jonathan, David’s best friend have both been killed in battle.
A. Though David mourns the death of his friends, he finds comfort, hope and faith in remembering who they were and why they died.
B. 2 Sam. 1:22 – 23 “From the blood of the slain, from the flesh of the mighty, the bow of Jonathan did not turn back, the sword of Saul did not return unsatisfied. Saul and Jonathan --- in life they were loved and gracious, and in death they were not parted. They were swifter than eagles, they were stronger than lions.”
C. David found faith, hope and courage for the future by remembering his friends and their contributions to the history of his nation.
II. The passage from Mark isn’t about remembering friends or recalling national history. It is, basically, one story about two people. The first person is Jairus who has a sick daughter.
A. Mark 5: 22-23 “Then one of the synagogue rules, named, Jairus, came there. Seeing Jesus, he fell at his feet and pleaded earnestly with him.” Jairus is a ruler of the synagogue, a wealthy, distinguished man of high standing in the community who humbled himself on behalf of his daughter.
B. He came to Jesus motivated by faith to intercede on behalf of someone else, his daughter.
C. With just a touch from Jesus, Jairus believes his daughter will be “healed and live.” – Greek (sothç) – actually means “to be saved.” So Jairus places his faith in someone else. He places his trust in the touch of Jesus.
III. The story within the story from Mark is about a nameless, faceless woman who is obviously at the opposite end of the socioeconomic scale from Jairus. She had, “suffered a great deal uder the care of many doctors and hand spent all she had.” (Verse26)
A. I can relate more closely with this woman, not because she has suffered much or because she has spent all she had; but, because she tries Jesus as a last resort.
B. I’m not along here either. I’m certain there are many sitting in this very room who can bow their heads in shame for turning to Jesus as a last resort rather than as an act of faith.
C. Verse 36 “Daughter, your faith has healed you.” It is always faith that truly saves. We can, like David, take comfort from our past, or like Jairus and the un-named woman, rely on someone else to save us. What Jesus points out is THE WOMAN HAD THE ABILITY ALL ALONG TO “SAVED”. (same Greek word – sothç)
Conclu: What is the point of the stories of a grieving friend, a man with a dead daughter and a woman with a serious health issue? I believe the link between them and God’s message to us as individuals, as a church and as a nation is found in verse 36 – “Don’t be afraid; just believe.” In the midst of all of life, through good times and bad, “DON’T BE AFRAID; JUST BELIEVE!” There is nothing in this life or in this world that God, in Christ Jesus, can’t handle with you.