The fifth chapter of Mark almost seems like a movie montage. Scene by scene, this chapter tells the story of three supernatural events. Jesus casts demons out of a possessed man. An ostracized woman finds healing by touching Jesus’ robe. And Jesus brings a little girl’s corpse back from the dead. Mark strives to prove a point in this passage. What is it? Jesus possesses power over everything from disease to demons to death.
Let’s zoom in on a powerful part of this passage. Jesus was teaching to an awestruck audience when a distressed dad tried to get his attention. He was wailing loudly while waving his hands towards the disciples. I’m sure his demeanor was similar to a drowning person at sea — crying aloud while desperately hoping for a little help. Why was this man so distressed? His daughter was dead.
Jesus’ apostles stepped in to prevent an interruption to his sermon. They had seen him heal the sick, but they likely couldn’t comprehend Him reviving a dead child. They tried to silence the mourning father. Their preconceived notions led them to snap, “Your daughter is dead. Don’t bother the teacher” (5:35). Rude, right? Jesus, known for his wisdom and insanely good hearing, overheard the exchange. He interjected, “Don’t be afraid; just believe” (5:36).
Jesus dropped everything to visit this little twelve-year-old. Sobbing family members led Jesus into a dark room with a lifeless child lying on a bed. Unafraid of death, He held her hand then said, “Little girl, get up” (5:41). Suddenly, her lungs filled with air and her eyes opened. One touch from Jesus changed everything for her. She was dead, but now she was alive.
Faith is the theme of Mark chapter five. All three of these stories recount people that believed that Jesus could move on their behalf. Miracles still happen today and it all starts with a little faith.
Faith is powerful, but so is doubt. Life often extinguishes the fire of our faith. You’ve experienced letdowns, setbacks, trials, and traumas. Sometimes these experiences in life develop your expectations of God. Let faith infuse your life. God will come through. It may not be what’s easiest for you, but it will always be what’s best for you.
The same encouragement that Jesus shared with Jairus, the distraught dad, is for you too. “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”