In my last sermon, we read about the woman who had suffered bleeding for 12 years. Jesus had said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering” (Mark 5:34). Compare this with the response Jesus received in his hometown: “What’s this wisdom that has been given him? What are these remarkable miracles he is performing? 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?” They took offense at him. And it is written that he was not able to perform miracles there… Jesus was amazed by their lack of faith.
The woman thought, surely Jesus will do for me what I need; if I touch him, I will be healed. Because of that, she experienced the power of God. On the other hand, Jesus’ family and fellow townsmen did not believe he was the son of God, the Savior, and so he could do nothing for them.
It is our faith in God which is the key to experiencing His power. That is what I taught in my sermon, by comparing the two passages. I hope you too will experience what the Word is talking about here in Mark 5:25-34 and Mark 6:1-6.
But that is not all to the tale. James, who did not believe in his brother Jesus at the time, would later become a leader of the Church in Israel and write the book of James. And Judas (Jude) would himself grow in the Christian faith and write the book of Jude. Surprising, isn’t it? This makes me think that faith is a gift from God. The two brothers who listened to Jesus’ teaching, witnessed his miracles and crucifixion, would come to change the values they once clung to.
Let’s pray: “God, grant me faith, deepen it. And through my faith, let me experience the work of God.”
“Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering” (Mark 5:34).