TEXT: Matthew 9:18-26
18 While he spake these things unto them, behold, there came a certain ruler, and worshipped him, saying, My daughter is even now dead: but come and lay thy hand upon her, and she shall live.
19 And Jesus arose, and followed him, and so did his disciples.
20 And, behold, a woman, which was diseased with an issue of blood twelve years, came behind him, and touched the hem of his garment:
21 For she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole.
22 But Jesus turned him about, and when he saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour.
23 And when Jesus came into the ruler’s house, and saw the minstrels and the people making a noise,
24 He said unto them, Give place: for the maid is not dead, but sleepeth. And they laughed him to scorn.
25 But when the people were put forth, he went in, and took her by the hand, and the maid arose.
26 And the fame hereof went abroad into all that land.
Adam Clarke said, “To be successful in our applications to God, four things are requisite; and this ruler teaches us what they are. First, a man should place himself in the presence of God. Second, he should humble himself sincerely before God. Third, he should lay open his wants with a holy earnestness. Fourth, he should have unbounded confidence in the power and goodness of Christ that his request shall be granted.”
In this passage, we have one account of Jesus’ healing ministry interrupted by another. These events begin at the dinner that Jesus was attending with his disciples. While Jesus was still speaking with John’s disciples, “there came a certain ruler, and worshipped him…” Mark and Luke inform us that this certain ruler was none other than Jairus the leader of the local synagogue. Dr. John MacArthur notes, “He not only was a synagogue official but was the chief official, or elder, of the synagogue. He was therefore the highest ranking religious official in Capernaum, responsible for the total administration and operation of the synagogue. He supervised the worship services and oversaw the work of the other elders, which included teaching, judging disputes, and other such leadership duties. As the ranking member of the Jewish religious establishment in Capernaum, which would have included scribes and Pharisees, Jairus may well have been a Pharisee himself. As is clear from the earlier sections of Matthew and of the other gospels, the religious establishment in general was already developing strong opposition to Jesus. Jairus could not have escaped being aware of this opposition, and when he came to Jesus for help he knew he would face criticism and pressure from his peers.”
Despite all that, Jairus comes to Jesus. The text says he “worshipped” him — publicly, not caring what others would think. The Greek word translated as ‘worship’ implies that he bowed down at Jesus’ feet, and may have even kissed his feet, the hem of his garment, or the ground. What would cause a man of such standing to humble himself in such a manner? He reveals why in his words to Jesus: “My daughter is even now dead…” Like any parent, this disconsolate father loved his child dearly, and her death would have broken his heart. But, he had heard the reports of this Man Jesus and the extraordinary things that He had done for others. And, in that moment, Jairus did not care about any religious differences or any questions about the Law or the Prophets. He just knew that Jesus was his only chance to get his daughter back.
Jairus tells Jesus, “Come and lay thy hand upon her, and she shall live.” Despite the doubts and animosity presented just a few moments prior by his peers, the Pharisees, Jairus expresses strong confidence in Jesus’ abilities. He does not have a grasp on the how or the why; but he certainly has a grasp on the what. In his mind, Jairus is saying, “This Man, Jesus, has power. If I can just get Him to my house to lay hands on my daughter, everything will be all right.” We know from previous examples, that Jesus always honored such faith. He was, if you will, impressed by it, and often lifted up those who expressed strong faith as examples for others.
Jesus does not hesitate to respond to Jairus — not with words, but with action. The text says, “And Jesus arose, and followed him, and so did his disciples.” The time for celebration sparked by Matthew’s decision to follow Jesus was over. It was time for Jesus & Co. to get back to work. Of course, we know that Jesus could have spoken the word or issued a silent command, and Jairus’ daughter would have been raised from the dead. But, for some reason, Jesus felt it necessary to go to this man’s house to work the miracle. The gospel writer does not give us the reason why. But it is not far-fetched to assume that Jesus aimed to show that He was not hostile to the religious establishment for the sake of being hostile. Instead, He was ready to respond in kind to those who came to Him in sincerity, total faith, and complete dependence for their needs. Like the disconsolate father in this passage, we ought to come to Christ in faith knowing that He can deliver us.
Thomas Moore wrote:
Come, ye disconsolate, wherever ye languish,
Come to the mercy seat, fervently kneel.
Here bring your wounded hearts, here tell your anguish;
Earth has no sorrow that Heaven cannot heal.
Joy of the desolate, light of the straying,
Hope of the penitent, fadeless and pure!
Here speaks the Comforter, tenderly saying,
“Earth has no sorrow that Heaven cannot cure.”
Here see the Bread of Life, see waters flowing
Forth from the throne of God, pure from above.
Come to the feast of love; come, ever knowing
Earth has no sorrow but Heaven can remove.
Now, if you are with us today and you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to show you how you can place your faith and trust in Him for Salvation from sin and Hell.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the Cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at [email protected] and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.