This week we’re looking at Luke 8:22-56. It begins with Jesus and his disciples getting into a boat to go to the other side of a lake. While they’re sailing, Jesus falls asleep and a squall suddenly comes down on the lake. The disciples, (some of whom are experienced fisherman), wake Jesus declaring that they’re going to drown. Jesus gets up, rebukes the wind and raging waters and the storm quickly dies down. Jesus then asks the disciples, where their faith is.
When they get to the other side of the lake they’re met with a demon-possessed man. He is naked and lives amongst the tombs. Jesus commands the impure spirit (legion) to leave the man. When the demons come out of the man they’re sent to some pigs who rush down a steep bank into a lake and drown. The crowd who witness this incident ask Jesus to leave. So he and his disciples return to where they came from.
There, they are then welcomed by a large crowd. A man named Jairus falls at Jesus’ feet and pleads with him to come to his house because his only daughter is dying. While Jesus is on his way, a woman who has been subjected to bleeding for 12 years comes up behind him and touches the edge of his cloak. As she does this, she is instantly healed. Jesus tells her that her faith has healed her and while still speaking to the woman someone from Jairus’ house comes with the news that the girl has died. Jesus tells Jairus not to be afraid but believe and she will be healed. Jesus goes to the house and brings back the girl from the dead!
This passage in Luke clearly illustrates Jesus’ authority. It shows he has power over nature, demons, sickness and death. I’m sure like me, you’ve experienced or witnessed Jesus’ authority in many different situations but I’m also sure there have been many times he hasn’t delivered in a manner that we would wish. What do we do then?
A Bible teacher, G. Campbell Morgan, lost his firstborn daughter. He says about her passing: “I can hardly speak of this matter without becoming personal and reminiscent, remembering a time forty years ago when my own first lassie lay at the point of death, dying. I called for him then, and he came, and surely said to our troubled hearts, ‘Fear not, believe only.’ He did not say, ‘She shall be made whole.’ She was not made whole on the earthy plane. She passed away into the life beyond. He did say to her, ‘Talitha, cumi,’ ‘little lamb, arise’; but in her case, that did not mean, stay on the earth level. It meant that He needed her, and he took her to be with Himself. She has been with Him for all those years, as we measure time here, and I have missed her every day; but His word, ‘Believe only,’ has been the strength of the passing years.”
When God doesn’t answer or deliver us in a manner that we would wish, may our strength come from choosing to believe God, trusting that he is sovereign and has authority over all.