Sunday, September 02, 2007

Do you have faith that surprises Jesus?

A few days ago I wrote about the seriously aggressive faith demonstrated by the paralytic and his buddies as they ripped a hole in the roof of a house to get to Jesus. Well, today I am considering the extreme faith demonstrated by the woman who pushed her way through a crowd just so she could touch the clothes of Jesus and be healed.

You know the story, this woman had been bleeding for 12 years and the only thing the doctors could take away from her was her entire bank account. She was worse off than ever and now poor. However, she heard about this man named Jesus who had the power to heal people. She had so much faith that Jesus could heal her that she believed all she had to do was touch his clothes and she would experience healing.

Hearing that he was in town, she rushed out to touch him only to see that a huge crowd had already surrounded him as he walked through the streets. What was she to do? Did she go home and wait for a more convenient time? No. Did she figure that it must not be God’s will for her to be healed today? No. Did she begin to doubt? No. Instead she pressed through the thick crowd with persistence in order to touch Jesus; just a touch, that is all she needed.

Upon reaching Jesus she touched him and the power was released from Jesus to her and she was healed. Here’s an interesting point, Jesus was not even aware of the woman or of her need, yet she was healed. In fact, Jesus stopped and wanted to know who just touched him because he knew the “power had gone out from him”. It was almost like he was caught off guard and surprised by what had happened. The disciples reminded Jesus that crowds were touching him as he walked. But Jesus knew something special had just happened. The woman told Jesus it had been her and Jesus responded to her saying “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering. “

Isn’t it something that Jesus didn’t seek her out? Rather, she sought out Jesus. It wasn’t the touch of Jesus that healed her, instead it was her faith in the healing power of Jesus displayed in her actions to press through the crowd and touch him. She wasn’t healed because she stayed home and just believed that Jesus could heal her. No, she was healed because she put her faith into action and aggressively pressed through to touch Jesus.

Do you have this kind of active faith? Are you pressing through the crowds to touch Jesus or are you just sitting at home passively waiting for Jesus to come touch you? This woman demonstrates that we can go after the power of God. We don’t have to wait around. In fact, serious faith won’t just wait around. Have you surprised Jesus lately with your faith?


jeff said...

The Centurion in Matthew 8 asked Jesus just to say the word, not bother to come to his house to heal his servant, and it says that Jesus marvelled at his faith. That is a cool concept.

But is shooting to marvel Jesus the proper motivation for faith? I think the humility of their faith is what made it amazing. Seems that shooting for marvelling Jesus would do away with the faith issue wouldn't it?

Eric Jones said...

Nice add with the Centurion account. Also a nice add about our motivation. The motivation of our faith must be pure. It must come out of a pure, circumcised, humble, and repentant heart. But, I do think it is healthy for us to examine our faith and be challenged by the extreme faith of others and to desire to see this type of faith evidenced in our lives.

Anita Hensley said...

Faith that would astonish Jesus is by necessity- humble.
Faith for 'faith's' sake, slick faith, name it claim it 'faith', prosper me 'faith' never fool Him for the real thing.
Shooting for astonishing Jesus with our true faith is a worthwhile pursuit.

jeff said...

I agree. Well done.