Miracle 15:
Healing the Woman with the Issue of Blood

Mark 5:25-34  Matt 9:18-26; Luke 8:40-56 This miracle will be dealt with with the healing of Jairus’ daughter below.

Miracle 16:
The Raising of Jairus' Daughter


A. Passage Selected: Mark 5:21-43  21 And when Jesus was passed over again by ship unto the other side, much people gathered unto him: and he was nigh unto the sea. 22 And, behold, there cometh one of the rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name; and when he saw him, he fell at his feet, 23 And besought him greatly, saying,  My little daughter lieth at the point of death: I pray thee, come and lay thy hands on her, that she may be healed; and she shall live. 24 And Jesus went with him; and much people followed him, and thronged him. 25 And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years, 26 And had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse, 27 When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment. 28 For she said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole. 29 And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague. 30 And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes? 31 And his disciples said unto him, Thou seest the multitude thronging thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me? 32 And he looked round about to see her that had done this thing. 33 But the woman fearing and trembling, knowing what was done in her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth. 34 And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague.

35 While he yet spake, there came from the ruler of the synagogue’s house certain which said,  Thy daughter is dead: why troublest thou the Master any further? 36 As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, he saith unto the ruler of the synagogue, Be not afraid, only believe. 37 And he suffered no man to follow him, save Peter, and James, and John the brother of James. 38 And he cometh to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and seeth the tumult, and them that wept and wailed greatly. 39 And when he was come in, he saith unto them, Why make ye this ado, and weep? the damsel is not dead, but sleepeth. 40 And they laughed him to scorn. But when he had put them all out, he taketh the father and the mother of the damsel, and them that were with him, and entereth in where the damsel was lying. 41 And he took the damsel by the hand, and said unto her, Talitha cumi; which is, being interpreted, Damsel, I say unto thee, arise. 42 And straightway the damsel arose, and walked; for she was of the age of twelve years. And they were astonished with a great astonishment. 43 And he charged them straitly that no man should know it; and commanded that something should be given her to eat.

Also found in:  Matt 9:18-26; Luke 8:40-56

B. Progression Stated: Biographical

Biographical because of the different people involved in the miracle and the comparisons and contrasts going on between them.

C. Presentation Summarized:

1. Context

a.       In both Mark and Luke, Jesus has just calmed the storm on the sea and cured a demoniac at Gadara. 

b.       Now we come to a double miracle in which Jesus deals with both death and disease. The message from Mark 5 and Luke 8 is that Jesus has power over the natural world and the supernatural world and now we see He has power over disease and death. 

c.        The point of these chapters is that Jesus is the Messiah, He can deal with any problem and He can be trusted.

d.       The context, which follows these miracles in both Mark and Luke, is one of the commissioning of the disciples.  Jesus sent them out, giving them authority over the unclean spirits and told them to take nothing with them for support. 

e.       The miracles have demonstrated Jesus’ power and care for those who follow him and now the disciples must have faith in Jesus to care for them as they go out to minister. So, I think these miracles are an object lesson for the disciples to give them confidence in Jesus' power and build their faith in Jesus.

f.         Matthew places the miracle in a different location chronologically and changes a few details.  As a matter of fact, this is one of the toughest passages in the Bible to solve the harmony problems between the gospel writers.  The problem is with timing. 

g.       When is Jesus told that Jairus’ daughter is dead?  In Matthew Jairus comes to Jesus, falls to his knees and says that his daughter has died (past tense).  But Mark and Luke say that the daughter is about to die. In the Greek, the three authors used three different words for death.  One means she had died, one says she was dying and the other says she is at the point of death.  When did death take place?

h.       Here the correct sequence of events

1.       The daughter was not dead yet, but would be before Jesus got to Jairus’ house.

2.       Matthew just relates that she is dead and doesn’t have to add the details about the person coming from Jairus’ house to inform Jairus that his daughter was now dead. Matthew also leaves out several other details. 

3.       He doesn’t mention the crowd pressing in on him, the thoughts of the woman who touched him, Jesus’ question as to who touched him and the disciples’ response to Jesus’ question.

4.       These differences really bother some people, but we have to remember that the gospel writers had different personalities, different audiences, different points that they were trying to make, etc. 

5.       Most apparent contradictions between the gospels can be explained by taking these differences into account. Those that we cannot explain I attribute to my lack of understanding rather than jump to the conclusion that the Bible is in error.

i.         The intertwining of these two miracles has a sandwiching effect.  Jairus and his daughter are the bread and the woman is the “meat.”

j.         Jairus’ daughter is twelve years old. The woman was sick for 12 years. What does that mean? Twelve years of suffering coming to an end and twelve years of light entering into darkness, the darkness of death.[1] Who knows? We don't know, but it is probably just a literary device to link the two stories together.

1.       Jairus is a synagogue ruler. 

2.       The woman was unclean because of the blood problem. 

3.       So you have an insider and an outsider compared and contrasted. 

4.       There is a woman and a child, death and disease, a public miracle and a private miracle.  Lots of contrasts and comparisons going on.

5.       Perhaps the point is that it doesn’t matter what your social status is, Jesus is the answer.

2. Content

a. The constraint of Jesus  (22-23)

1.       He is stopped by the man and pressed in by the crowd. Luke uses the word sunepnigon, which is the same word, used of the thorns, which choked the word in the parable of the seed (8:14).

2.       The crowd is crushing Jesus. Matthew doesn’t mention this, which is in keeping with what we just said about his tendency to condense the accounts.

b. The concern of Jesus  (24-36)

1. For The Synagogue Ruler

a.       Jairus is the leader of the local synagogue. It could very well be the synagogue in Capernaum. We don’t know what his reaction to Jesus was prior to this. Perhaps he witnessed the casting out of the demon in the synagogue and the healing of the man with the withered hand in the synagogue.

b.       Since he is one of the leaders, and the leaders didn’t typically respond well to Jesus, I wouldn’t be surprised if Jairus didn’t think too highly of Jesus prior to this. 

c.        But now that his daughter is dying and he is desperate, He comes to Jesus. I wonder if it was difficult for him to kneel before Jesus?  We can only speculate, but I doubt that Jairus’ faith was that Jesus was the Messiah—only that He could heal people and might be able to heal his daughter.

d.       Jairus’ daughter was at the point of death.  He wanted Jesus to hurry and come to his house to heal her.  Jesus consents to go with Jairus, but soon after they get started, there is a delay. 

e.       A sick woman comes up and touches Jesus’ garment. I can imagine that Jairus is probably frustrated at the delay. And the delay adds to the drama of the story. It also shows us that Jesus did not neglect the needs of a lowly woman to impress an influential religious leader.


2. For The Woman with the 12 year Hemorrhage

Because of her condition, this woman was continuously unclean according to Lev 15:25-31.  She could not go to the temple to worship.  She could not touch anyone or they would be unclean for the rest of the day. If she sat in a chair, it was unclean for the rest of the day, etc. So she was basically cut off from normal fellowship with others and with God.

                (1) The physicians of the world (25-26)

a.       Mark wants you to know that the doctors couldn’t help her.  He says, "She suffered much at the hands of many doctors, had spent all her money and was not helped at all."   

b.       So we see that this matter of medical expense being so great today is not new at all.[2]

c.        Luke doesn’t mention that she suffered at the hands of many doctors, nor that she had spent all her money on medical bills.  In telling this incident, it is interesting that Luke, who was a physician, said she couldn’t be healed.[3]

d.       Why do you think Luke left that part out? Perhaps because Luke was a doctor.

(2) The Great Physician (27-32)

a.       In contrast to the physicians of the world, we see the capabilities of the Great Physician.

b.       Superstition said that power was in the robe of a great man, priest, rabbi, etc.  Her belief was that touching the fabric would make her well.  In fact, when she did touch His garment, she was healed.

c.        Jesus was aware of the fact that a miracle had taken place. 

d.       Did touching his garment heal her?  Was it the garment that healed her?  No, Mark 5:30 says Jesus felt the power flow from Him.  Mark wants to distinguish between the fabric and her faith in Him.

e.       The disciples thought it was a very peculiar question since the whole crowd was pressing in on Him. But only one touched Him in faith for healing!

f.         The situation is the same today. I think we have a lot of folk around who use the name of Jesus freely. They are running around saying that it is Jesus this, and Jesus that, and people think they certainly know Him. Surely they know Him, but they have touched Him as the crowd touched Him—not like this woman touched Him, for she touched Him in faith for healing.

(3) The faith of the miracle  (33-34)

a.       The woman is probably ashamed and embarrassed.  She was unclean and her touch would have made anyone she touched unclean.

b.       But as we have seen before, the reason Jesus doesn’t become unclean when He touches an unclean person like a leper or a corpse, is because He transfers cleanliness and life.

c.        Haggai 2:10-14 makes the point that if something clean touches something unclean, then the thing that was clean is defiled.  Not so with Jesus. The details of the miracles where Jesus transfers cleanliness parallel the spiritual healing that Jesus brings where He cleanses us of our sin.

d.       I also think that the numerous events where Jesus touches unclean people illustrate the doing away with the law and the whole idea of ritual uncleanness.  Something new was happening and Jesus accepts all people who believe in Him no matter what their status is in the society.

e.       Jesus declares to the woman that it was not the touch but her faith, which healed her.

(4) The effects of the miracle

a.       First, I want to point out that Mark uses a word to indicate that she was healed.  But the word usually means “saved.”  There is a double entendre or double meaning here.  Not only was she healed physically, she was healed spiritually.  She was saved.

b.       Second, we need to ask, “When did she demonstrate her faith?”  She had faith that He could heal her when she approached Jesus.  She demonstrated her faith further when she touched him.  She was focused on touching His garments as if they had some magical powers, but God was gracious enough to respond to her faith even though it was not mature.

c.        I think one of the reasons Jesus stopped was to tell the woman that it was her faith that healed her so that she wouldn’t continue in her superstition.

d.       Does God answer children’s prayers?  Do they understand how it all works? There are still times when I don’t pray very smartly, but God still understands my heart and answers.  God uses inadequate faith, imperfect faith, immature faith, etc. He responds and then clarifies it later. 

e.       How many of you became Christians through hearing or reading a verse in the Bible that is truly a justification passage like John 3:16?  How many of you became a Christian after hearing some passage or passages that were not justification related, but convicted you anyway?  Since not everyone raised their hand, maybe I should ask how many of you have not yet become a Christian?



3. Back to Jairus

(1) The report (35)

a.       Jairus is with Jesus and when Jesus stops to help the woman, Jairus is probably wishing Jesus would hurry.

b.       The father who had come, when he saw our Lord talking to this woman and dealing with her, I’m sure thought, Oh, why doesn’t He hurry? Doesn’t He know that my little girl is so sick at home that she’ll die unless He moves?

c.        Our Lord purposely did not move. He healed this woman, and while He is dealing with her one comes with a message, which is whispered to the father.[4] 

d.       The message?  Jairus’ daughter is dead.

(2) The response (36)

a.       Do not be afraid, just believe.

b.       It must be possible then, not to fear, even in the face of death. 

c.        And if faith can eliminate fear in the worst scenario that you can face, then faith can eliminate fear for any situation.

c. The compassion of Jesus  (37-43)

a.       When they get to the house, He tells them not to cry because she is not dead and they laugh at Him. 

b.       Was she dead?  Yes.  The text says, “Her spirit returned.”  Why does He say she is only asleep?  Because He knew it was not permanent. 

c.        She wasn’t going to stay dead.  Jesus says the same thing with Lazarus, the disciples misunderstand and he corrects them saying, “no, he is really dead.” 

d.       Sleep is a euphemism for “temporal” death.  Paul even uses this term for believers. 1Co 15, 1Co 11.

(1) His  privacy

a.       He did not let anyone follow except the three.  So Jesus goes to the home and puts out those who don’t believe.

b.       When they were out, He goes in and the record tells us:[5]

c.        This was going from a public to a private instruction.  This miracle is for Jairus' family and for the disciples. 

(2) His power

a.       “Talitha cumi” was an expression of the Aramaic that the little girl would have understood. It was her native tongue and I think it could be translated “Little lamb, wake up!”

b.       That’s what he said to her and that is a sweet, lovely thing. We find that our Lord raised a little girl, He raised a man in the vigor of young manhood (the widow’s son at Nain), and then probably a mature man or even a senior citizen, Lazarus. He raised them all the same way. He spoke to them![6]

c.        I think this little girl represents the little folk, those little ones before they reach the age of accountability. And He said to her in this lovely way, “Little lamb, wake up.”

d.       I know right now I’m speaking to a lot of folk who have lost little ones. Some have lost their little ones, what a sad thing it is.

e.       It’s wonderful for me to know that although they has been in His presence for many years, one of these days He’s going to speak those words again, “Little lamb, wake up!”

f.         He’ll be talking to those little lambs who left us to soon. Then that little form that was laid away will be raised from the grave, the spirit joined to the glorified body, and we will again have our little ones some day.

g.       What a wonderful, beautiful thing this is. It is a demonstration of His power.[7]

h.       Isn’t that practical? If a twelve-year-old girl, or boy for that matter, were waked up from sleep and were made well, what would they want? Food, of course. So He told them to feed the little one. How practical this is and how wonderful it is.

i.         These are the three great miracles that to my judgment demonstrate the great message of the Gospel of Mark.

j.         He is God’s Servant with God’s power.

k.        He is a Man of action and He has come not to be ministered unto but to minister and to give His life a ransom for many.

l.         Here we see Him in this chapter doing three wonderful miracles. He casts out demons from the man in Gadara. He heals the woman with an issue of blood. He raises this little twelve-year-old daughter of Jairus.[8].


·          From the healing of the woman we see that it is faith in Christ, not magical touches that heal. The power is in a person, not a fabric or formula.

·          The removal of her unclean physical condition parallels the process of salvation in which Jesus removes an unclean spiritual condition. The miracle is an illustration of salvation.

·          The raising of Jairus’ daughter affirms the deity of Christ and proves that He is the Messiah.  Matt 11:5 quotes Isa 35.

·          The delay in following Jairus resulted in more glory to God because Jesus had the opportunity to raise the girl from death and not just heal her.

·          Death is not a serious barrier for Christ to overcome.


·          God can use inadequate faith, respond to it and clarify it later. 

·          When medicine is hopeless, hope in God.

·          Jesus told the lady to "go in peace." Peace is the result of faith.  How many of you have panic attacks?  Not to trivialize the panic attacks, but panic is the opposite of peace, and the root cause is not really believing that God can get you though the situation.

·          It is Jesus who guarantees our resurrection from the dead.  Because He lives, we too shall live (Paul tells us). It is him that turns death into sleep from which we can awake

·          We learn a ministry model from Christ:  Don’t be afraid to leave the needs of the crowd to deal with an individual. If need drives your ministry, you will burn out because there will always be need. And I think we often assume the needs of the many are more important than the needs of the few.  We are numbers oriented. But as I’ve studied the miracles, it seems that the multitudes witnessed the miracles and were amazed, but it never says they “believed.”  It is always the individual that Jesus is dealing with who believes.

·          The compassion of Jesus demonstrated in this miracle should bring reassurance that He is not too busy with the rest of the world to care for me individually.

·          Sickness and death strike the young as well as the old.

·          Sometimes the Lord’s delay brings a greater demonstration of His power.  So don’t give up. And when you are tempted to ask God why He is taking so long, remember this principle.

·          The answer to fear is faith.  We see this principle a lot.  The number one sin of the disciples was a lack of faith.  It is our number one problem too.


[1]J. Vernon McGee, Thru the Bible commentary [computer file], electronic ed., Logos Library System, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson) 1997, c1981 by J. Vernon McGee.

[2]J. Vernon McGee, Thru the Bible commentary [computer file], electronic ed., Logos Library System, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson) 1997, c1981 by J. Vernon McGee.

[3]J. Vernon McGee, Thru the Bible commentary [computer file], electronic ed., Logos Library System, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson) 1997, c1981 by J. Vernon McGee.

[4]J. Vernon McGee, Thru the Bible commentary [computer file], electronic ed., Logos Library System, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson) 1997, c1981 by J. Vernon McGee.

[5]J. Vernon McGee, Thru the Bible commentary [computer file], electronic ed., Logos Library System, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson) 1997, c1981 by J. Vernon McGee.

[6]J. Vernon McGee, Thru the Bible commentary [computer file], electronic ed., Logos Library System, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson) 1997, c1981 by J. Vernon McGee.

[7]J. Vernon McGee, Thru the Bible commentary [computer file], electronic ed., Logos Library System, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson) 1997, c1981 by J. Vernon McGee.

[8]J. Vernon McGee, Thru the Bible commentary [computer file], electronic ed., Logos Library System, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson) 1997, c1981 by J. Vernon McGee.