Summary: From the Woman who was bleeding we can learn how to move from Bondage to Blessing
From Fear to Freedom
* Someone very close to me made a serious mistake one time which landed them in jail. It was only about 8 hours behind bars, but that experience served as motivation for their lives. I submit to you that they learned, the hard way, about this thing called FREEDOM and what it means to be free!
* Of all the things God wants for you, freedom heads the list. He wants all of us to be free from sin, bondage, and fear. For this reason, I believe, He has illustrative stories in His word that we may learn what real freedom is all about. Our story tonight is one of many which demonstrate His desires.
* God doesn’t simply want us to be free physically, as sometimes He gives us physical problem to teach us. He wants to move us from the fear we may possess about sin, death, hell, and live, to the freedom we can find in Him.
1. The Bondage She Experienced – Bondage can take several forms, either physical, emotional, spiritual or a combination of all three. Make no mistake about it, all three are like being incarcerated is and that is never a welcomed status. And with this bondage, fear is prevalent.
a. She Was Physically Sick – The Bible tells us only that she had been suffering from “bleeding” (KJV an ‘issue of blood’) for 12 years. This is hardly enough information for us to make a diagnosis so we do not know the exact disease she had developed. Obviously, it was some kind of female problem which caused her to bleed in a menstrual way. Chances are, this because of the length of this sickness (bleeding) she had become anemic which would have left her highly susceptible to contracting other life-threatening diseases. Quite likely, since medicine was so primitive we have little idea about ‘all’ that she would have went through with this illness.
b. She Was Personally Suffering – To read verse 26 is to have great empathy for this lady. “She had suffered or endured many things under many doctors.” We can all identify with this. Either you or a family member has consulted a doctor who tried his best and couldn’t do anything, so what did he do? He referred you. So the process starts all over again with a new doctor, who repeats the same steps and then what does he do? There you go. This woman had endured a decade of doctors, diagnosis, and disappointments. Additionally, she was quite likely ostracized from most public events, people, and even worship. Everything she touched, every place she sat, and almost all that she did was considered unclean. Her relationship, her marriage, and he worship were all affected by this illness.
c. She Was Presently Searching – With all she had been through, it would have been easy to give up. Yet here she is, having spent all her money, tried all these doctors, and submitted to all they knew to do; she is in the crowd gathered around Jesus. Why is she there? Because she is searching for an answer to this life of bondage.
* Every one of us can have our own very personal, “bleeding”. It can be our finances, our marriage, our family, other relationships, habits, and job, just to name a few. It can make us unhappy, unhealthy, and most of all, unholy, just like this woman. Sadly, some of us have lived like this for so long that we believe it to be normal, but for those who want better; we can find release from our bondage. It begins with what we believe.
2. The Belief She Expressed – As she searched, there were several things which motivated her to seek out Jesus. Be reminded that we “do what we believe, the rest is just talk.” She expressed a belief by getting up, out, and in. Why?
a. Her Desperation – It is obvious to see that she was at the end of her rope, she was desperate. After 12 years of trying everything she knew and probably a few things she wasn’t sure of, she wanted find the answer, live like a free woman, and reverse the course of her life. The result was that she was so desperate that she came to Jesus. Don’t miss the fact that the Spirit of God was working in her life to bring her to this point. The 12 years of suffering were God’s instrument to bring her to seek Him.
* Consider this; most of us will never seek out the Lord until we are desperate. For some reason, we must be coerced to do business with God. I submit this is the reason: We know we cannot deal with God on our terms, & we will not submit to HIS terms until we become desperate.