Pleading for Mercy
After the episode with the demonised man, when the man, the demons and the towns-people all pleaded with Jesus (Mark 5:7,9,12,17,18), Mark now presents another example of 'pleading'. This time, it is a sincere cry for help. No sooner had Jesus arrived back on the north west shore of Lake Galilee, than crowds engulfed Him. Despite the disapproval by religious leaders (Mark 3:22), the local synagogue leader pushed his way through the throng and threw himself at Jesus' feet.
Jairus pleaded with Jesus because his little girl was seriously ill. He knew that without miraculous intervention death was inevitable. Ignoring official censure from his superiors, Jairus trusted Jesus to heal her. He was not ashamed or embarrassed to declare his faith and plead for her life in front of the growing crowd. Inviting Jesus back to his house, he immediately led the Lord towards his daughter.
As He went, Jesus affirmed His compassion by moving through the crowd, following the anxious cleric. However much he was worried, he had real faith that Jesus could heal. Indeed, that only Jesus could change the outcome. Whatever his religious scruples, Jairus had enough evidence to believe in Jesus, and to risk his reputation in this very public appeal for life-saving assistance. "If it matters that much", somebody once said, "you have nothing to lose by being public about it". By contrast, secrecy betrays shame and fear. It is a mark of godly wisdom to run straight to Jesus (Matthew 11:28), irrespective of whatever religion you have known (Acts 6:7). Power to change the inevitable is only in the hand of God who operates in dynamic relationship with people who trust Him, not by a pious formula.
Why are we so reluctant, today, to encourage a direct approach to Jesus Christ? He is the only one with power to heal the outside and clean the inside. It is not magical incantations or mystical rites we need, but a masterful Saviour. If your heart is full of compassion ask people if you can pray for them in their difficulty. It is a simple step but leads people to understand that God cares, hears and has the power to act. And every real Christian can do it if they are trusting the Lord! So, why not you? Today?
© Dr Paul Adams