Method To The Modesty – Luke 8.49-56

While he was still speaking, someone from the synagogue leader’s house came and said, “Your daughter is dead; do not trouble the teacher any longer.” But when Jesus heard this, he told him, 

“Do not be afraid; just believe, and she will be healed.” 

Now when he came to the house, Jesus did not let anyone go in with him except Peter, John, and James, and the child’s father and mother. 

Now they were all wailing and mourning for her, but he said, 

“Stop your weeping; she is not dead but asleep!” 

And they began making fun of him, because they knew that she was dead. But Jesus gently took her by the hand and said, 

“Child, get up.” 

Her spirit returned, and she got up immediately. Then he told them to give her something to eat. Her parents were astonished, but he ordered them to tell no one what had happened.”

(NET)

Immediately after blessing the healed woman (v.48), we read that someone from the synagogue leader’s house came and said, “Your daughter is dead; do not trouble the teacher any longer.” Despite being told that this little girl was dead, Jesus replies by saying 

“Do not be afraid; just believe, and she will be healed.” 

The synagogue leader, Jairus, showed immediate faith and belief in who Jesus is simply by letting Him in the house: remember Jesus has just touched a ceremonially unclean woman (v.47). Met by the characteristic wailing of mourning in the Middle East, Jesus speaks again:

“Stop your weeping; she is not dead but asleep!” 

This isn’t received particularly well (v.53), but Jesus proceeds to gently [take] her by the hand and [say] “Child, get up.” After seeing their daughter miraculously resuscitated (cf. John 11.43-44), her parents were astonished, and quite rightly so. 

If Jesus were a lunatic or an habitual liar, would He have ordered them to tell no one what had happened? If He were in the business of lying to people or so out of touch with reality, wouldn’t He want everyone to know that somehow this girl had been brought back to life at His hands? Why then [order] them to tell no one what had happened?

Well, on the day we refer to as Palm Sunday, Jesus was publicly proclaimed and acknowledged as the Messiah (John 12.12, Psalm 118.25-26). If word started to spread too early, then prophecy and predictions of the Messiah arriving on that very first Palm Sunday would have been off, wouldn’t they? (see Daniel 9.25-26).

So, there’s method to the modesty: it’s not because He’s a liar, not because He’s a lunatic, but because He is Lord and He knew that now was not the time…but the time was coming.

Published by James Travis

Pastor of Saar Fellowship in the Kingdom of Bahrain. Married to Robyn and Dad to our two boys.

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