A Trembling Encounter
J.C. Thompson |
Learn to face fear with confidence because of our trust in Christ.
Encounters with Christ
Message 8 • A Trembling Encounter
August 22, 2021
- Thank you for joining us this morning. We are continuing our series entitled Encounters with Christ.
- I’ve titled today’s message, A Trembling Encounter. We will be in Mark chapter 5 this morning.
- To give a little bit of context, Jesus had just visited the other side of the lake in Capernaum where He exorcised a demonic spirit from a man and was returning. They did not want Jesus to remain in that place with them.
- Upon returning, a man named Jairus expressed that he desperately needed Jesus help because his daughter was dying.
- Jesus agreed to help and was journeying to his home, when He is interrupted by someone who also needed Jesus’ help.
- This woman who was filled with fear, approaches Jesus in faith.
- That is where we will begin today.
- Let’s read the entire encounter.
- Mark 5:25-34.
When facing a situation filled with fear…
1. Recognize physical suffering. (Mark 5:25-26. C/R: Leviticus 15:25-28; Revelation 21:4)
- Mark 5:25-26 (NLT) - 25 A woman in the crowd had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding. 26 She had suffered a great deal from many doctors, and over the years she had spent everything she had to pay them, but she had gotten no better. In fact, she had gotten worse.
- This woman had suffered from this issue of blood for 12 years.
- Her issue of constant bleeding could have been from any number of factors, perhaps an infection or an internal source. The Scriptures do not inform us what the source of her issue was.
- Not only had she endured physical pain and fatigue from her physical ailment, she also spent her financial and physical resources trying to find a cure.
- Not sure if any of you have been in that situation where effort, doctors, and funds have dried up in trying to find a solution to the physical suffering you are enduring.
- More than likely she would have pursued experimental treatments for her issue or even doctors with less than reputable practices seeking relief.
- It can feel quite desperate.
- But in addition to finding no relief from her pain and continual bleeding, this woman’s condition got worse.
- In Leviticus this issue would have made this woman unclean, a situation that would have been far worse than just her physical suffering.
- But in addition to the label of unclean, which we discussed at length a few weeks ago when we talked about Jesus’ Encounter with the leper, one of the most difficult parts of being labeled unclean is not being allowed to participate in worship services at the Temple.
- Those of you who have had debilitating, long term physical issues, you likely have felt some of the isolation, the degradation of being labeled as “not normal” because of your physical condition.
- Those who have struggled with infertility, those with children with special needs, those with other physical issues like cancer, immune system disorders or even something like big food allergies can all cause significant different ways of life for people.
- They are not only physical ailments, but they also have social stigmas associated with them as well.
- More casual things like parties, eating out, or physical activities look very different but so do daily schedules, tasks and rhythms of life for families dealing with the physical suffering in life.
- The question is do we come to God with boldness with our lives and our bodies when we’ve exhausted all of our human resources?
- When you are at rock bottom because of physical suffering who or what do you turn to in order to find relief or even joy regardless of your circumstances.
- Our world, because of sin’s influence makes physical suffering a reality, but in the midst of our suffering, Christ meets us.
- APP: Are you willing to turn to Christ in the midst of your suffering?
2. Reach out to Christ. (Mark 5:27-29. C/R: Hebrews 11:6)
- Mark 5:27-29 (NLT) – 27 She had heard about Jesus, so she came up behind Him through the crowd and touched His robe. 28 For she thought to herself, “If I can just touch His robe, I will be healed.” 29 Immediately the bleeding stopped, and she could feel in her body that she had been healed of her terrible condition.
- This woman’s desperation quickly turns into an astounding act of faith.
- After hearing about Jesus, she desired to touch His robe, anticipating being healed of her condition just by touching his clothes.
- While this woman would have heard of Jesus’ miraculous healing and teaching as word was spreading throughout Capernaum, where this encounter takes place.
- But this woman’s faith is seen. She takes her knowledge of Jesus, as limited as it was, having never encountered Him before and thinks if only I touch His robe I will be healed.
- This is a tremendous statement!
- She recognized Jesus’ authority over the earth. While she desired to touch the clothes of Christ, she knew it was Him and Him alone that could heal her, not His garments.
- Israelites were commanded to wear tassels at the bottom of their cloaks to show that they belonged to God (Deuteronomy 22)
- They both were a reminder to the Israelites and also an outward sign to the world of their faith in God.
- The Pharisees, in a show of pride and arrogance, lengthened their tassels. Jesus would have worn them at the traditional length.
- She was instantaneously healed of her affliction.
- What all of the doctors, time and money could not heal, a mere touch of the tassels healed her.
- This woman recognized that Jesus could heal her and He did.
- Hebrews 11:6 (NLT) - 6 And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to Him must believe that God exists and that He rewards those who sincerely seek Him.
- This woman is a wonderful example that faith is what pleases God. While her desperation to find a cure put her in a place to be searching for answers, she truly believed that Jesus could heal her completely.
- We learned when discussing the leper that Jesus touch mattered so much because he was considered unclean, for this woman to touch Christ would have meant she was also making Jesus unclean.
- She would have forced Him into a situation where He would have had to go and be ceremonially cleansed in order to be clean again. Showcasing her great faith even further, trusting that Christ would not have shamed her, but healed her.
- APP: It could be a debilitating physical condition, it could be some sort of sin that you cannot find your way out of, escaping your past, or even restoring a broken relationship. Will you reach out to Christ for His help, His guidance today?
3. Receive the words of Christ. (Mark 5:30-34; C/R: John 6:37; Romans 15:7)
- Mark 5:30-32 (NLT) – 30 Jesus realized at once that healing power had gone out from Him, so He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched My robe?” 31 His disciples said to Him, “Look at this crowd pressing around You. How can You ask, ‘Who touched Me?’” 32 But He kept on looking around to see who had done it.
- Jesus after being touched by this woman with great faith could feel healing power going out from Him.
- More than likely Jesus would have felt some sort of physical sensation at this woman’s act of faith.
It is important for us to understand that people are not healed by some force in the universe, but by a person. God is personally involved in the miracles He performs. By Jesus’ body responding to healing power leaving Him reinforces the personal connection with His supernatural miracles.
- The disciples question seems like an insightful one at first, but it spoke to their lack of understanding of Jesus.
- They expressed what their eyes could see, but not what the reality of Christ revealed. Many were pressing on Christ, but only one truly touched Him as an act of faith.
- Jesus, who knew who touched Him, as we saw earlier in this series with Nathaniel at the fig tree, wanted this woman to not only experience physical healing, but He wanted to offer her something greater.
- Jesus did not want this woman to only receive His power, but also His presence.
- Mark 5:33-34 (NLT) – 33 Then the frightened woman, trembling at the realization of what had happened to her, came and fell to her knees in front of Him and told Him what she had done. 34 And He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace. Your suffering is over.”
- This woman, frightened, trembling, responded to Jesus’ question.
- This woman would have known fear from either embarrassment, shame or rejection because of her physical issue and status as an unclean woman.
- Realizing not only that she had been healed physically, but that this man also recognized what she had done, fell to her knees and revealed everything she had done.
- This public confession pleased Jesus and He shared His Word with her: “... your faith has made you well. Go in peace. Your suffering is over.”
- Jesus was not only interested in this woman’s physical healing, He wanted her to receive salvation. We see this in the use of the two terms in Greek.
- In verse 29 she had been healed the Greek word for healed is “iaomai” which is the most common word for physical healing in Greek.
- But in verse 34: “your faith has made you well” or in other translations, “your faith has healed you.”
- This Greek word is “Sozo” the term that the New Testament uses most often for being saved from our sins.
- Jesus was not just concerned that she was healed from her physical suffering. He wanted her to receive forgiveness for her sins and to go in peace.
- Jesus, by healing her body, allowed her to go back into community, be involved with temple worship and be reunited with her family and friends.
- But more importantly, her salvation reconciled her with God.
- Jesus healed many physically, but not all who were healed, were saved, but this woman received salvation from her sins!
- These words from Jesus would have given her a new identity and relationship to God as well as with the relationships with the people involved in her life.
- These words from Christ would have also been a public testimony to the supernatural healing power of God and the authority of Jesus to forgive sins.
- We can trust that when we come to Jesus we will not be rejected.
- John 6:37 (NLT) - “However, those the Father has given Me will come to Me, and I will never reject them.”
- APP: Christ is speaking to you even today, will you listen to His Words?