Just That Powerful

Jesus left there and went to his hometown, accompanied by his disciples. 2 When the Sabbath came, he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were amazed.

“Where did this man get these things?” they asked. “What’s this wisdom that has been given him? What are these remarkable miracles he is performing? 3 Isn’t this the carpenter? Isn’t this Mary’s son and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him. Mark 6:1-3

Reading this passage one thing I’ve not considered before strikes me: Jesus had a huge earthly family. He had four brothers and at least 2 sisters (passage states plural sisters, so at least 2).

Bethlehem was a rural village. Presumably, everybody knew everybody else. People were in other people’s business. If kids got out of hand, every one knew it.

So, when this man comes through his home town, people noticed. They were unsure about his abilities because, after all, He was from Bethlehem, but He was one of theirs.

His family certainly knew Him and probably most of of the villagers as well, but they couldn’t believe what He said or how He said it.

But the Bible tells us He offended them. Jesus spoke truth no matter who was listening.

The Gospel is offensive to the unbelieving ear. It’s so offensive, in fact, that governments try to stop it and prevent it from spreading at all cost. Men and women are sent to prison because of it.

And let’s be real: Christ was crucified because of it.

If you are teaching and preaching the Gospel, you can expect opposition even from those who have known you since you were small.

The Gospel is just that powerful.

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It’s All There

After he put them all out, he took the child’s father and mother and the disciples who were with him, and went in where the child was. 41 He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”). 42 Immediately the girl stood up and began to walk around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished. 43 He gave strict orders not to let anyone know about this, and told them to give her something to eat. Mark 5:40-43

Jesus only had a few people in with Him to heal the little girl. The others were a distraction. In the end, he told those in the room with Him not to let anyone know about what transpired in the room. Normally, he was telling that to those who were healed.

I suspect we only got a glimpse at what took place in that room. On the face of it, there was nothing remarkable about the process (other than a human being raised from the dead)!

Sometimes God will reveal something to you and to no one else on the planet, nor is it to be shared with anyone else because it’s for you and you alone. Even if you told people, they wouldn’t quite “get it” because it wasn’t for them. It could be something from Scripture, something you see in nature, or something someone says. Just as these select individuals saw firsthand Jesus raising the little girl to life – not to be shared outside the room – so He does with us. I’m not talking about extrabiblical revelations but those that illuminate what is already revealed. Only you would get it because it’s for you.

Fortunately, though, He’s revealed more than enough in Scripture without needing to resort to what others might call mystical revelations.

It’s all in Scripture. It’s all there. We just need to mine it each and every day.

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Touching the Hem of His Garment

A large crowd followed and pressed around him. 25 And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. 26 She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. 27 When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, 28 because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” 29 Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering.

30 At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”

31 “You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’ “

32 But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. 33 Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. 34 He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.” Mark 5:24-34

This is an intriguing story because of how it transpired. True, the people were crowding around Him and touching him, some may have even been doing it just to touch Him. But the woman with the bleeding problems was intentionally touching His cloak. We know that Jesus had power to heal, but this is a first where the Scriptures talk about actual power going out from Him.

Presumably, power went out from Him every time He healed, but this was different. He knew it and the girl also knew it, not because she was healed but because He was calling her out. She didn’t know what He would do when He discovered who it was. Did He know already and just not let on, wanting her to confess, or did He not know? As the Scriptures tell us, He only knew what the Father revealed to Him while He was in human flesh so He didn’t know.

Still, He wanted to come face to face with her.

When He discovered her, she was very afraid.

But Jesus calmed her fears and put her at ease – the truly compassionate Savior towards those seeking His help.

I think a lot of people who don’t know God think He’s going to zap them for all the wrong they’ve done. They think the church will cave in when they enter because of all their sins. They know they’ve erred and sinned but they don’t know the compassionate Savior that this lady met. She too was terrified and I’m sure was pleasantly surprised and relieved that He didn’t zap her or condemn her.

What a Savior!

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Jairus Had Faith

21 When Jesus had again crossed over by boat to the other side of the lake, a large crowd gathered around him while he was by the lake. 22 Then one of the synagogue leaders, named Jairus, came, and when he saw Jesus, he fell at his feet. 23 He pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.” 24 So Jesus went with him. Mark 5:21-24

Jairus had faith. Even though he was a synagogue leader, he wasn’t a bad man. Most of the religious leaders we see interacting with Jesus were either trying to trap Him or trying to kill Him. But it’s clear that Jairus wasn’t one of them. Jairus needed help and knew where to turn. It was probably his last resort. Had he known about Jesus earlier, He might have gone to Him sooner.

But Jairus took a step of faith and reached out to Jesus. It was a small step of faith that would yield life-changing rewards.

Our steps of faith will probably not be life-changing, but they will be well rewarded. Scriptures tell us to walk by faith and not by sight, so it’s a daily habit of being obedient to God. Obedience is always rewarded, perhaps not right away but certainly always.

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A Story Told

18 As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been demon-possessed begged to go with him. 19 Jesus did not let him, but said, “Go home to your own people and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.” 20 So the man went away and began to tell in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him. And all the people were amazed. Mark 5:18-20

Finally, a healed man who obeyed Jesus.

Recall when He healed some people, He told them to not tell others, and they did just that.

This time He told the man to tell others, and he did. Imagine what the reaction was when the townspeople realized who this man was! Just imagine how many times he told the story. My guess, he told it to any and all who would listen. I can even see him telling the story to those who walked away from him. It was truly an amazing story. He was set free from a host of demons. The people he approached no longer needed to run away in fear.

Our testimony of how He changed our life is just as powerful as this former demoniac. It’s obviously not as fresh as his was but it is as powerful. Someone in your circle of influence needs to hear about it. Pray that God will open that door of opportunity for you soon and that you’ll walk boldly through it.

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