35 While he was still speaking, there came from the ruler's house some who said, “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the Teacher any further?” 36 But overhearing[a] what they said, Jesus said to the ruler of the synagogue, “Do not fear, only believe.” 37 And he allowed no one to follow him except Peter and James and John the brother of James. 38 They came to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and Jesus[b] saw a commotion, people weeping and wailing loudly. 39 And when he had entered, he said to them, “Why are you making a commotion and weeping? The child is not dead but sleeping.” 40 And they laughed at him. But he put them all outside and took the child's father and mother and those who were with him and went in where the child was. 41 Taking her by the hand he said to her, “Talitha cumi,” which means, “Little girl, I say to you, arise.” 42 And immediately the girl got up and began walking (for she was twelve years of age), and they were immediately overcome with amazement. 43 And he strictly charged them that no one should know this, and told them to give her something to eat.
Jesus is Lord of all even
the impossible. There are times we doubt this but the bible gives us example after example of the impossible becoming possible. Powerful over all---even over death. Death is a permanent condition. We just experienced the death of a parent in our school community last week. Death seems so final. So unbelievable. We are left wondering why... and the separation seems so permanent.
In that moment, Jesus redefined death as a temporary condition. That’s why He uses the metaphor or the analogy of sleep. Sleep is a temporary disconnect, isn’t it? You’re insensitive to the environment around you when you’re asleep, you don’t hear the conversations, you don’t participate socially. You’re asleep. But it’s a temporary situation. And Jesus is saying for this girl, this is just asleep, it’s temporary. This is not permanent.
Well unless any of them had seen another resurrection Jesus had done, they would have never in their life heard of anybody being raised from the dead and they would never ever refer to death as sleep...sleep being something temporary. This concept of death as sleep is picked up by the Apostles, isn’t it?, in the New Testament. The Apostle Paul loves to refer to believers dying as being asleep, like he refers in 1 Thessalonians chapter 4, to all those who sleep in Jesus will be caught up in the Rapture. God will raise us, we who know the Lord Jesus Christ when we die, the body sleeps. The soul, immediately in the presence of the Lord. “Absent from the body, present with the Lord.” “Far better to depart and be with Christ.” That’s the...that’s the soul. But the body sleeps until the glorious resurrection at the return of Christ. And so you can refer to the death of a Christian as a release of the soul into the presence of the Lord, but the body sleeps until the day of resurrection. And so death, in a sense for a Christian, becomes described as sleep because it’s temporary...temporary...temporary state.It is our faith in the God of the impossible that allows us the knowledge that we are in a temporary state. Our disconnect from God because our sinful nature is not permanent because of the sacrifice of Jesus. Our acceptance of the gift of salvation is impossible to believe because "While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."
The world still mocks and scoffs at the reality of Christ’s power over death, but that doesn’t limit Him in any way. Accessible, available, interruptible, indomitable, imperturbable, perfectly calm...finally, what can I say, kind loving, maybe charitable....The last point here is just His tenderness, His love, His kindness. He came, displayed power, the resurrection, could have simply been a power display, say a word and it’s done. But there’s so much tenderness displayed in this that we see His loving heart.
Sometimes we see the impossibility of a situation and we just can't see a way out. I'm sure Jairus could not see a positive outcome from this situation and when his messengers arrived to say that his daughter had died I'm sure he felt the weight of sorrow and hopelessness. But that is not how the story ends. In the midst of impossibility Jesus made the impossible possible. He is the Lord of all.
Tomorrow's scripture focus: Mark 6:1-6
Love the quote about tying death to sleep because of Jesus and His resurrection power. Awesome.
Post a Comment