Friday, October 02, 2020

2020.10.02 Hopewell @Home ▫ Luke 8:40–56

Read Luke 8:40–56

Questions from the Scripture text: How do the Jews respond when Jesus returns (Luke 8:40)? Who comes in Luke 8:41? What does he do? What does he ask Jesus to do? Why (Luke 8:42a)? What difficulty do they encounter (verse 42b)? What is the situation of the woman in Luke 8:43? What had she spent? On what? With what results? What did she do (Luke 8:44)? With what result? What does Jesus ask in Luke 8:45a? Who speaks up, and what does he say (verse 45b)? What does Jesus say has happened (Luke 8:46)? What does the woman do (Luke 8:47)? What does Jesus call her (Luke 8:48)? What does he say has happened to her? What does he tell her to do? Who comes, when, in Luke 8:49? What does he say has happened? What does he tell Jairus not to do? But what does Jesus tell him not to do and to do (Luke 8:50)? Whom does Jesus permit to go in with Him in Luke 8:51? What were people doing (Luke 8:52a)? What does Jesus tell them not to do (verse 52b)? Why? What did they do to Him (Luke 8:53)? What did He do to them (Luke 8:54)? What did He do to the girl? What did He say to her? What happened to her in Luke 8:55? What did Jesus say to do? How do her parents respond (Luke 8:56)? What does Jesus tell them not to do?

Here we see that our Lord Jesus is worthy of our welcome (Luke 8:40), for not only do we see His great power, but also His great love and willingness to do us good.

Jesus is willing to come to us. We know that he did not have to go, as the Centurion had believed in Luke 7:6–8. And, indeed, the ruler of the synagogue could have had friends who would bring her on her bed, as we saw in Luke 5:18–19. But our Lord Jesus is a willing and merciful Redeemer, and He comes as Jairus pleaded.

Jesus can do more for us than all else together. Here is a woman who has been dying for as long as Jairus’s daughter has been alive (cp. Luke 8:43 with Luke 8:42). All of her money couldn’t help her. And all human doctors together couldn’t help her. But behold how small a thing it was for Jesus to help her. Just touching. Not even Him, but His garment, and that at its edge. Not a gradual healing but immediately. Not a partial healing in the slowing of the flow, but a complete healing in that it stopped. What a complete and infinitely powerful Savior is our Lord Jesus!

Jesus does more for us than we know that we need. As is often the case with these healings in the gospels, our English translations understate what the Lord Jesus says to her in Luke 8:48. He doesn’t merely say “your faith has made you well”; He literally tells her, “your faith has saved you.”

Jesus commands us to draw present and ongoing spiritual benefit from the knowledge that we have of His saving us. It is a good thing to study Scripture, as we are doing now, and to understand with our minds all that the Lord Jesus does for us. But the Lord Jesus wants us to take this understanding in our minds and apply it to the condition of our hearts. 

He commands her to be courageous (“be of good cheer” in Luke 8:48, omitted in the critical text) and to have peace as she goes. Often, when the Lord is working some unexpected mercy for us in a particularly difficult situation, we quickly forget what He has done and are easily discouraged or troubled. But He intends to do us not just that particular good in that moment, but by the memory of Who He is and what He has done, that we would have an ongoing benefit of courage and peace in the other challenges of our lives.

Jesus does more for this than we dare to hope is possible. This girl is dead (her spirit has to come back into her body in Luke 8:55), but Jesus says that she is sleeping. Her death is not final; she will rise from it. Later, He would say the same about Lazarus in John 11:11–14. Indeed, the New Testament will sometimes follow this pattern from our Lord to refer to the deaths of all saints, since these deaths are ultimately not final (cf. 1 Corinthians 11:30; 1 Corinthians 15:181 Corinthians 15:20; 1 Thessalonians 4:14). They all laughed even at Jesus’s view of the situation, let alone His ability to do anything about it. But, let us never diminish what our Lord might do. 

And then, if His wisdom is to carry us through a hardship instead of undoing it, let us know that it is impossible for what we hoped to have beyond His power, but that this outcome came only because a better thing was demanded by His mercy.

Since our Lord Jesus is such a Redeemer as this, let us always heartily welcome Him!

In what difficulties have you been finding yourself? How have you been looking to, resting in, and having fellowship with your Lord Jesus in the midst of it?

Suggested songs: ARP46 “God Is Our Refuge” or TPH270 “At the Name of Jesus”

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