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9: Healing His Daughters (Mk 5:21-43)
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9: Healing His Daughters (Mk 5:21-43)

I.       The Basics

A.     Setting

Jesus again crossed over the lake, probably back to Capernaum. Through Jesus’ healing a woman and a little girl, this passage shows us how the busy servant is also a loving father. The narrative is interesting in its changing viewpoint. First, while Jesus was on the way to heal Jairus’ daughter, the healing of the woman interrupts the story. Then, while Jesus was still speaking in regards to the woman, news from Jairus’ house brings the focus back to Jairus’ daughter.

B.     Key Verse

            “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace, and be healed of your affliction” (5:34).

C.     Did You Know…?

1.      Rulers of the synagogue (5:22): Laymen whose responsibilities were administrative, not priestly, and included such things as looking after the building and supervising the worship. Sometimes the title was honorary, given to prominent members of the congregation with no administrative duties attached.

2.      “Lay your hands on her” (5:23): The act of the laying of hands appears in the Old Testament in various contexts, one of which was during the act of blessing (Gen 48:14). In the New Testament, Jesus laid hands on little children (Mt 19:13, 15) and on the sick (Mk 6:5). In Acts, laying of hands was accompanied by prayer (Acts 6:6; 8:15; 13:3).11 In the True Jesus Church, church ministers lay hands on someone as a sign of interceding for God’s power. This is often done for someone praying for the Holy Spirit or for healing.

3.      “Flow of blood” (5:25): This may have been a chronic menstrual disorder or a uterine hemorrhage. Her condition made her ritually unclean, excluding her from normal social relations since anyone who came in contact with her would become unclean.

4.      “Wept and wailed loudly” (5:38): It was customary for professional mourners to be brought in at the time of death. In this case, however, there might not have been time to hire them, so perhaps these were the girl’s relatives.

5.        “Talitha, cumi” (5:41): Mark records the exact Aramaic words Jesus spoke. The word talitha (“little girl”) is an affectionate term, stemming from a root meaning “lamb.” Aramaic was the language Jesus and His disciples ordinarily spoke. He probably also spoke Hebrew (to read the Old Testament writings) and Greek (the lingua franca of the Greco-Roman world).

II.    Observation

A.     Outline












B.     Key Words/Phrases

III. General Analysis

1a. How were Jairus and the woman similar and/or different in faith?

1b. When you pray to God for help, do you pray specifically for something to happen, or pray generally for God’s will to be done? Compare your prayer to Jesus’ prayer (Mk 14:36).

2.   Describe a time when:

2a. you asked for God’s mercy on behalf of someone else.

2b. someone prayed for your needs.

2c. you prayed to God for your own needs.

2d. How often does each type of prayers take place in your life?

3.   What does the shift in the story’s viewpoint (from Jairus’ daughter to the woman and back) tell you about the nature of Jesus’ work?

4.   Describe a time when you felt like Jesus’ son or daughter.

IV.  Segment Analysis

A.     5:21-24

1. Jairus was a respected member of the community (cf. Did You Know 1), but he humbled himself before Jesus. When other people respect you, how do you humble yourself before the Lord?

2. Why did a large crowd follow and press around Jesus?

B.     5:25-34

3. Why do you think the woman came up behind Jesus instead of asking Him for help?

4. Jesus felt power gone out from Him. What does this tell you about the effort needed in His work?

5. What does the disciples’ reaction (31) say about their faith and understanding of Jesus?

6. Why did Jesus take the time to look around to see who had touched Him and to speak to the woman?

7. Why did the woman tremble with fear?

8. The woman was probably older than Jesus. Why did He call her “daughter”?

9. If you were Jairus, what would you be feeling when Jesus was detained on His way to heal your daughter?

C.     5:35-43

10. What does the people’s reaction (cf. 35, 38, 40) say about their faith and understanding of Jesus? Compare this to Martha’s reaction in Jn 11:32.

11. If you were Jairus, what would you be feeling at this time, knowing that your daughter died while Jesus was delayed?

12. Jesus said to Jairus, “Do not be afraid; only believe”(36). Afraid of what? Believe in what? How does this relate to what He said in 4:40?

13. Jesus said, “The child is not dead, but sleeping” (39). What teachings can we draw from this?

14. Why did Jesus take only Peter, James, and John to Jairus’ house? Why did Jesus let only the three disciples and the girl’s parents witness the miracle? Why did He give strict orders not to let anyone know?

15a. Compare what Jairus had asked Jesus to do for his daughter to what Jesus actually did.

15b. How has Jesus helped you beyond what you asked for?

15c. How does Jesus pay attention to the little details of your life?

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