Summary: The account of Jesus healing a woman and Jairus's daughter teaches us about the power of Jesus over disease and death.
In chapter 8 of his Gospel, Luke answers the question, “Who then is this?” (8:25). In four different accounts he shows that Jesus has power over nature, demons, disease, and death.
Previously, we examined Jesus’ power over nature (8:22-25) and demons (8:26-39). Today we are going to examine Jesus’ power over disease and death.
Let’s read about Jesus healing a woman and Jairus’s daughter in Luke 8:40-56:
40 Now when Jesus returned, the crowd welcomed him, for they were all waiting for him. 41 And there came a man named Jairus, who was a ruler of the synagogue. And falling at Jesus’ feet, he implored him to come to his house, 42 for he had an only daughter, about twelve years of age, and she was dying.
As Jesus went, the people pressed around him. 43 And there was a woman who had had a discharge of blood for twelve years, and though she had spent all her living on physicians, she could not be healed by anyone. 44 She came up behind him and touched the fringe of his garment, and immediately her discharge of blood ceased. 45 And Jesus said, “Who was it that touched me?” When all denied it, Peter said, “Master, the crowds surround you and are pressing in on you!” 46 But Jesus said, “Someone touched me, for I perceive that power has gone out from me.” 47 And when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling, and falling down before him declared in the presence of all the people why she had touched him, and how she had been immediately healed. 48 And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace.”
49 While he was still speaking, someone from the ruler’s house came and said, “Your daughter is dead; do not trouble the Teacher any more.” 50 But Jesus on hearing this answered him, “Do not fear; only believe, and she will be well.” 51 And when he came to the house, he allowed no one to enter with him, except Peter and John and James, and the father and mother of the child. 52 And all were weeping and mourning for her, but he said, “Do not weep, for she is not dead but sleeping.” 53 And they laughed at him, knowing that she was dead. 54 But taking her by the hand he called, saying, “Child, arise.” 55 And her spirit returned, and she got up at once. And he directed that something should be given her to eat. 56 And her parents were amazed, but he charged them to tell no one what had happened. (Luke 8:40-56)
Some people argue that miracles, including Jesus’ resurrection, are impossible because nature is a closed system and miracles would therefore violate the laws of nature. But John Lennox, mathematician and professor at Oxford University, says that Christians don’t claim that Jesus rose by some natural process that violated the laws of nature. Instead, Jesus rose because God injected enormous power from outside the system.
He illustrates by saying, “Suppose I put $1,000 tonight in a drawer in my office. Then I put another $1,000 in tomorrow night. That’s $2,000. On the third day, I open the drawer and I find only $500. Obviously, when you find only $500 in the drawer, the laws of arithmetic have not been broken. $1,000 plus $1,000 still equals $2,000. What those laws tell you is that someone (in this case, probably a thief) has put his hand into the drawer and removed the money from the drawer. The laws of mathematics can’t stop the thief from doing that.”
And so Lennox concludes, “In the same way, the resurrection of Jesus – and every other miracle – does not negate the laws of nature. The resurrection, or any other miracle, shows that Someone has reached into the drawer of history and removed something – the sting of death. So unless you have evidence that the system is totally closed, you cannot argue against the possibility of miracles.”
That is what Luke is writing about. He is showing his readers that Jesus is God in human form who came to seek and to save the lost. Jesus is reaching his hand, as it were, into our time and space to demonstrate his enormous power from outside our system to do miracles and transform lives.
The account of Jesus healing a woman and Jairus’s daughter in Luke 8:40-56 will teach us about the power of Jesus over disease and death.
Let’s use the following outline:
1. The Request to Jesus (8:40-42a)
2. The Restoration by Jesus (8:42b-48)
3. The Reassurance from Jesus (8:49-50)
4. The Restriction by Jesus (8:51)
5. The Ridicule toward Jesus (8:52-53)
6. The Resurrection by Jesus (8:54-55a)