Mark 5:24-34 – Touching or Thronging
If you have ever been in a crowded bus, elevator, subway, sporting event or walked the streets of a busy city, you will have a sense of the dynamics of the miracle found in Mark 5:24-34.
As a backdrop to this story, a synagogue ruler by the name of Jairus came to The Master and pleaded with Jesus to come with him and heal his dying daughter. In verse 24 it is shared with us that Jesus consented and a large crowd followed Christ after hearing that another miracle might be taking place. In fact, the King James Version of this verse says that a large crowd followed and thronged him.
Imagine the electricity in the air. Feel the pushing, shoving and excitement that was taking place as the large crowd pressed in on our Lord. They were going to see another miracle and the crowd wanted a front row seat in anticipation of what would be happening.
However, on the way to a miracle be captured by a precious story of a woman who had been subject to bleeding for 12 years. We are not told what this bleeding was or its cause. We simply know that given her physical condition, according to Mosaic Law, she was pronounced unclean and therefore was required to stay away from people. In fact, Scripture continues to share with us that she spent all that she had on doctors and healthcare, but had not grown any better, but in fact grown worse.
Enter The Great Physician whom she had heard about and said to herself that if I can just touch his clothes I will be healed. Consequently, she touches Jesus, but please realize this was no easy task.
Here was this woman weak from continual blood loss integrated with a crowd so energized and frenzied. See the frantic woman pushing, struggling, focused and reaching out through this mass of humanity for her miracle. And it occurs, she touches Jesus.
Jesus, thronged by a pushing crowd on all sides, stops and asks, “Who touched my clothes.” The disciples counter and say, “You see the people crowding against you,” and “yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’” Her faith had made her whole.
And so, what is the teaching? First of all, many swarmed around Jesus, many pushed Jesus, many thronged Jesus that day, but only one touched Him…touched Him by faith. Theirs was the pushing and shoving of selfishness in wanting to see a miracle, but only one, in that crowd, experienced a miracle.
Secondly, she was desperate. Everything else that she had tried to resolve her illness was to avail. It is only when see, touch and trust Jesus and Him alone that we experience the fullness of life.
Finally, a relationship with Christ is personal. The power of His love incorporates and gathers crowds, but the intimate cultivation of His Love is built on a personal relationship.
And so, may our walk with Christ be one of touching Him and not thronging Him. May we experience our own daily miracles and not be spectators.