Thinking the Unthinkable- Part 2.

DSC_1703Before I continue I should explain why I chose this title as it was not obvious in part 1. Some people have theology that find it difficult to accept that a good person like Jairus should have a wife who suffered from such a debilitating condition, therefore to them either Jairus or his wife must have some hidden sin which resulted in God punishing them. This is similar to the question that the disciples asked Jesus regarding the man who was born blind in John chapter 9. Though we may think that people don’t think like that these days there is the example of Horatio Spafford the author of the classic hymn “it is well my soul.” He was a Chicago businessman who knew the evangelist D. L. Moody whom he intended to accompany to Europe on one of his missions. He was delayed by a business commitment and his wife and four daughters went ahead while he intended to catch a later ship and join them, But their ship collided with another mid-Atlantic and sank with many lives lost included his children with only his wife surviving. It was on his way over to meet his wife that he wrote the classic hymn. Later they had more children including a son, but he died tragically young, at which point the church he belonged to expelled him because they thought he was under some sort of curse. It is surprising how often similar thoughts can creep in, even when our head knowledge argues against it. Here spiritual warfare cannot be excluded. But I am digressing.

The account of Luke the physician mentions that all the woman’s money had been spent on medical help. As she was classified as ‘unclean,’ regardless of how debilitating her condition was, it would have been virtually impossible to earn any money herself so these funds must have come from her husband. Considering the low status of women in those days it says a lot for her husband that he must have really loved her rather than abandon her to her fate. Nothing in the Gospel accounts would suggest that Jairus was not such a man. Here another objection might arise as why if that was the case why did not Jairus immediately celebrate his wife’s healing by giving her a big hug? The most obvious answer would be that he still considered her to be unclean because the Law required certain rituals to be done before she was officially clean. But in fact she became clean when she touched Jesus even if the bystanders, including the disciples, failed to understand this.

By this time you may be wondering even if it was the case that she was the mother of Jairus’ daughter, what difference does that make? Well, I once heard that where a woman is mentioned in the Bible she is a symbol of the Church, the ‘Bride of Christ.’ As such her healing echoes the idea of the church being the spotless bride. Taken together with the daughter being raised from the dead you have a family being restored. Today in Western Christianity nothing it seems to do seems to halt its decline like all the money that her husband spent on the doctors. The secular media has written off the church and regularly foretells the demise of the church just as the neighbours had written off the daughter’s chance of recovering. That was because they were not taking into account Jesus. Just as Christianity’s critics today will try and deny that Jesus ever existed, despite the evidence. So it would be nice if it was not just two unrelated miracles but two parts of a whole. We are too individualistic in modern culture and forget how important is the concept of the family to God.

David Rose, 2017.

About davidgrose

I am a Bible believing Christian, brought up in the Brethren Movement, and now find myself associating with charismatics even though I do not always agree with them. I am in full-time employment. I have interests in history and photography amongst others.
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