God’s kingdom, power, and glory. Today, we’re going to explore beyond impossible. As we do so, I wonder, have you ever been so exhausted and so desperate for something to change in your life that you were willing to throw all caution to the wind just to be able to get to Jesus? Have you ever been in a situation where you have exhausted all human possibility for something to change in your life or in the life of a loved one and it, you were so desperate for something to change that throwing caution to the wind, you did everything you could to run after Jesus, hoping, believing, trusting that he could do the impossible. Because he’s a God of possibilities. We’re going to explore two powerful stories this morning. They’re about God’s power, about God’s kingdom authority. We will discover our savior, Jesus. He’s the son of the living God. He came to make a difference in this world, which means he came to make a difference in our lives. And if you have your Bibles with you, or if you’ve got your devices, whatever it is that you, um, have, I invite you to turn to the fifth chapter of Mark’s gospel. We will start with verse 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. Then one of the synagogue rulers named Jairus came there. Seeing Jesus, he fell at his feet and 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. So Jesus went with him the gospel of our Lord. Let’s pray dear father. We thank you for bringing us here today Bringing us to these powerful stories about your son your son’s ability to go beyond the impossible To do the possible in our lives We live in a world of chaos today God and we need to know that you are still on the throne That you’re still as powerful as you’ve always been So, Jesus, thank you that you’ve sent the Holy Spirit here to give us childlike faith, the kind of faith we need to believe and to trust, the only faith that only comes from you.
So come now, Holy Spirit, and take me out of your way, we pray, in Jesus name, Amen. Well, in our story today, we encounter Jesus. He’s getting off of a boat and like so many times when he would get off a boat or he would enter into a town or a village, immediately he’s surrounded by a crowd. However, on this particular day in that crowd comes a man. He’s a man of power. He’s a man of authority. He’s got stature in the community. Mark tells us he’s a ruler in the synagogue and his name is Jairus. Jairus has a problem. His little daughter of 12 years old is laying in a bed at home and she’s dying. And Jairus has nowhere to go except to Jesus. So leaving his stature in the community behind, Jairus runs up to Jesus and takes a posture of humility.
In all submission, he leaves it all before the feet of Jesus. This man of worldly influence fell down on his knees, desperately pleading for the life of his daughter. Verse 23 says, My little daughter is dying. Please come, put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live. And so Jesus went. Mark tells us that when Jesus went, the crowd grew, and it pressed upon him, it pressed in on him. Pastor Todd told me today, he once went to a concert, and as he went around a corner to get into the seats, the crowd was so close that It was like, you, you had to go with the crowd, you, there was nowhere else to go. That’s the type of crowd Jesus was in. It was almost as if he was a celebrity and everybody had to get to him. And in the middle of all of that ruckus, on the way to the house of a dying girl, comes a woman. She’s been bleeding for 12 years. Somehow, some way, she found out Jesus is in town. Verse 27 says when she heard about Jesus, she came, she came up behind him in the crowd. She touched his cloak because she thought, if I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.
Why is she so desperate? Let me paint the picture for you. She’s been bleeding for 12 years. In her culture, to be bleeding means you are ritually unclean. You cannot participate in the culture. For 12 years, she has suffered greatly, Mark tells us. She is under the care of many doctors. She has exhausted her finances, going from one place to another, trying one cure after another. Nothing has happened to her. In fact, Mark tells us, she hasn’t gotten better, she’s gotten worse. 12 years, she’s been ritually unclean. You know what that means? That means if she’s married, her husband hasn’t been able to touch her for 12 years. That means if she’s a mother and she’s got children, she hasn’t been able to hold them or touch them for 12 years. That means for 12 years, she hasn’t been able to go to the synagogue and worship with her community. She can’t even go to the market and buy groceries to take care of her family. She has to have somebody else do the simplest things for her.
This has been going on for 12 years. No wonder she’s desperate. You see, in first century Jewish culture, she’s practically dead, culturally and communally. She has been in an isolation, a social isolation, that most of us in this place cannot even imagine. That’s where the heart of her desperation comes from. Somehow, in the middle of all of that, word has reached her Jesus. Who has the power to heal is in town. There’s something about this Jesus that she’s been told about something that makes her throw all caution to the wind. And she goes into public where she’s not supposed to be. And she does the unthinkable. She sneaks up behind him. She reaches through the crowd and she touches the hem of his. Because she says, if I can only do that, I don’t have to bother him. I just have to touch him.
There’s something about Jesus that drove her to believe that maybe, maybe he’s the one. There’s something about Jesus that drove her to trust him enough to say he’s the Messiah. And if I can get to him. Everything will change. As Jesus walked by this woman who had suffered greatly for 12 years, she reaches out, she touches the corner of his robe, and 20 verse 29 says Immediately, immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt her Bo in her body that she was freed from her suffering. Notice those words, mark could have said she’s healed. He says instead she’s freed from her suffering at once Mark tells us Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked who touched my clothes I love the disciples reaction who touched your clothes. What do you mean Jesus?
Everybody’s touching you. How are we supposed to know who it was? But Jesus is not going to let it go. He surveys The crowd, he’s looking for the person. She knows it. Finally, verse 33 says, then the woman knowing what had happened to her came and fell at his feet and trembling with fear, fear told him the whole truth, the whole truth, which means she’s told him about all of the 12 years of her suffering, about when it started, about all the doctors she had gone to, about how no human was capable of doing anything in her life. But she finally one day had heard about him and in hearing about him and knowing that he was there she did She dared to do the impossible to reach him now in my mind. This is not in the Bible So don’t look for it, but this is me. I can hear her Apologizing to Jesus. I’m sorry. I interrupted you. I know you’ve got to get to Jairus’s house I know there’s a little girl. I didn’t mean to have you stop I just had to be healed. Her desperation is equal with Jarius’s desperation.
I love Jesus’s reaction. Do you notice that he doesn’t yell and scream at her, Hey, you stole my power. Give it back. He doesn’t do that. He doesn’t call for the authorities and say, come and get her and throw her out. She’s not even supposed to be here. He doesn’t do that. Instead, what does he do when the power went out from Jesus? And he finds who it is, he reaches down to her and he calls her daughter, daughter. Your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering. Daughter, you know, I looked in the in the New Testament I can’t find any other place where Jesus calls somebody daughter, but he calls her daughter How intimate is that and why would that be significant?
He could have called her anything, but he chose to use the word daughter Well, who is with him? Jairus, whose daughter is dying at his house, laying on that bed. He’s got to be thinking, if you call her daughter, if you love her enough to heal her, can’t you get to my house and heal my daughter? And just about when we think Jairus is going to be able to find out whether or not that’s going to be true, devastating news comes. To this man news that in my mind, I know that his knees must have buckled underneath him. It was like he got socked in the gut. He’s in the breath came out of his lungs. When he heard this statement, the man came verse 35 while Jesus was still speaking. Some men came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue ruler, your daughter is dead.
Why bother the teacher anymore? If you have ever received a phone call, if you’ve ever been sitting in a doctor’s office and you have gotten some kind of news that knocked you into yesterday and beyond, you know what this man was feeling. His faith just collided with his fear. But he is not alone. Jesus is there. Jesus heard what the men said. Jesus knows what Jairus is suddenly feeling. And I can see him. Grab him by the scruff of the neck. Because in verse 36 it says, ignoring what the men had said. Jesus told the synagogue ruler don’t be afraid, just believe. Jesus has got to get eye to eye with this man who’s lost everything in that sentence.
Look at me, Jairus. I’ve got this. Let’s get going. And taking three of his disciples and leaving the rest and the crowd behind, Jesus goes with Jairus to his house. And what happens? They run smack dab into a chaotic scene of commotion. There’s people crying and wailing. The professional mourners have already gotten to the house. And they’re making a loud noise and an incredible scene. And Jesus steps into that and he says to them, Why all the commotion and wailing?
The child is not dead, but asleep now, you know, Jesus spoke with power and authority when he said those words Did it change the crowd did they suddenly believe in him? No, did his words convict them to have childlike faith like the woman had just displayed? No, do you know what they did? They laughed at him. How often does our world laugh at Jesus? All the time. Hasn’t stopped. Jesus ignores them. He takes Jairus and his wife and the three disciples and he goes into that room where death is now there. And he takes that little girl by the hand he speaks over her and he restores her to life. He gives her back her life. Jesus can do the impossible. This was not a magic trick. This was a miracle both the healing of the woman and the raising of Jairus’s daughter are miracles
Have you ever been in a situation? Where the Holy Spirit has talked to you and you’ve heard God say do not be afraid Just believe in my son. Just trust in him I think one of the hardest things as a Christian Is being in that situation in that moment where you are completely helpless There is not a darn thing you can do humanly possible To change the situation that either you’re in Or your family member or a friend is in and the only place to go is to the cross of jesus Those are the times when we are driven to surrender ourselves And our situation and our family and our loved ones over to him because if a miracle is coming It’s coming through our Lord JesusIn those times when our faith intersects with our fears, the cross becomes real, and it becomes powerful. Those are the times when we hear in our head the things that have been spoken over us our whole life. Jesus Christ came to die for the sins of the world, to defeat death and evil and sin, and I need Him.
Because the cross is the only place that I can run to. There was a time in my life when I had to go back up to St. Paul to seminary. And I left my son, my depressed son, behind. And I left him in the arms of rich. And I left him in the arms of Jesus. And there was a Celtic cross that I could see out the window of my seminary room. And I’m telling you, I got news after news from home that wasn’t good. My son sometimes gets to a point where I just pray every day, God, make him, get him through this day. And on that particular day, I left my room and I went and I put my back on that cross and I cried for hours desperately asking God to help my son make it through the day.
Have you ever been so desperate that the only place you could go was the cross? The cross, where your faith intersects with your fear, and that’s when Jesus is real. That’s when he becomes tangible, because that’s the only place that we can go. He is the son of the living God, our God, who loved us so much that he sent his only son into the world to suffer the pain of the cross. To die on the cross so that you and I could come on a day like today Holding on to whatever it is that has driven us to heat to come here today so that we could encounter Jesus For it is his blood and his body broken and shed for us Given for us that helps us have hope not hope in the world But hope in our eternal God our Savior Jesus who can do the impossible It’s hard to walk that walk when you get to that moment.
And yet, how many times have you and I been there? How many times have we been desperate for a miracle and God has shown up? You and I, in those times, run to Jesus with outstretched hands, filled with childlike faith in our fingertips. Like that woman saying, I don’t need to interrupt him, I know he’s got better things to do. Don’t we say that? Isn’t that such a lie from the enemy? He doesn’t have anything better to do at that moment. He wants to be face to face with you in your desperation. But in faith, like childlike faith, we reach for him. What’s going on in your life today that if Jesus were to walk into this sanctuary and walk up and down the aisles, what is it that you would have in your hand that you would give to him in desperation saying, I need you.
What is it that if you heard he was in town, you would throw everything away. You’d spend every penny you had to be able to get it to Jesus. How long have you been carrying it? He’s here today to meet you. In your time of need, whatever hurt, whatever pain, whatever addiction, whatever depression, whatever grief, whatever brokenness, whatever anguish, whatever sin you’ve been carrying, he’s here and he wants to meet you face to face so that you can reach out and he will tell you daughter, he will tell you son, your faith has set you free from this anguish. We have a unique situation and perspective here. We’ve been around the block a few times look around we’ve got more gray and white hair than blonde and black
Even my body grown sometimes when I get up when my knees don’t do what they’re supposed to anymore Got scooters and wheelchairs. We’re in a unique perspective We’ve lived life with Jesus and we’ve got hundreds of stories of the miracles He’s already done in our lives and we Get to share them not just with each other, but we get to do what he commands us to do It is our privilege to go to the world and to tell them about the Jesus and the miracles He’s done in your lives There’s a reason the Holy Spirit told Mark to put these two stories in this book and if you and I could do what Job said I wish I could write this down What would you write down so that generations coming up underneath you could read your story and be encouraged that our God is still a God of miracles? You and I know what it’s like to live out Job’s words. Let me read them to you. No, not I think or I hope, I know that my redeemer lives. And that in the end he will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been destroyed and my flesh, yet in my flesh I will see God. I myself will see him with my own eyes. I, and not another, how my heart yearns within me.
I want to close with words from Psalm 130. It’s a cry from the depth of my heart that I’ve had many times on my lips, and I think it’s appropriate for today. Out of the depths, I cry to you, Lord, Lord, hear my voice. Let your ears be attentive to the cry, my cry for mercy. I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope. I wait for the Lord, more than the watchman wait for the morning. More than the watchman wait for the morning. Let’s pray. Lord Jesus, you have brought us to these stories. The story about the woman, the story about the daughter, the story about the synagogue ruler. Real people with real desperation, with real need. And Jesus, I know that you are standing here looking out in the faces of all of us who are sitting here today. For you knew that we would be here. You knew that we would need you. For we are just as desperate.
Give us the ability to look back at you when you call us daughter and son. When you tell us not to be afraid. When you remind us that you’ve got this. That you’re more powerful than the world. When the world is laughing at you, when the world is offended by you, when the world is rejecting you, God, help us cling to you. For today, we’re all reaching out, and we’ve got hold of your robe. Because we know, there’s no place else to go but you. So thank you for loving us that much. That you would come, and you would suffer for us. So that on a day like today, We could come and surrender ourselves to you and it’s in your holy and precious name that I pray. Amen