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7. Jesus Heals Jairus’ Daughter (Matthew 9:18-26; Mark 5:21-43)

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Main Point: Jesus has power over sickness and death.

Key Verse:

After the crowd had been sent outside, Jesus went in. He took the girl by the hand, and she got up. - Matthew 9:25


Say: Word was spreading about Jesus. This was long before the days of television and movies. It was even before common people had books. People spread news by talking to other people. Those who had seen the miracles of Jesus told others. Then those people told others, and so on. At this time, God had not sent a prophet for 400 years, so these people were not used to seeing miracles. When Jesus arrived, teaching a new message about God’s kingdom, and performing miracles, it was the talk of the town - and the countryside!

Jairus Comes To Jesus (Mark 5:21-24)

Say: We know that many of the Jewish leaders did not follow Jesus. These leaders were very angry that Jesus was teaching things that were so different than the things they taught. But in today’s story, we’ll learn about one Jewish leader, named Jairus, who did put his trust in Jesus. Jairus went to find Jesus when he had a big, big problem. He needed help fast, but Jesus wasn’t nearby. Jesus had been teaching on the other side of the Sea of Galilee, and now He was on His way back. When people heard that Jesus was returning, they crowded at the shoreline. Jairus was one of these people. His problem was so urgent, he probably paced back and forth waiting to catch a glimpse of Jesus’ boat heading to shore. Ask: Have you ever had a big, big problem? Have you ever needed Jesus this much? Let’s read in Mark 5:21:

Jesus went across the Sea of Galilee in a boat. It landed at the other side. There a large crowd gathered around Him. Then a man named Jairus came. He was a synagogue ruler. Seeing Jesus, he fell at his feet. He begged Jesus, “Please come. My little daughter is dying. Place your hands on her to heal her. Then she will live.” So Jesus went with him. - Mark 5:21-24a

Jairus was the leader of the synagogue. Synagogues were buildings where the Jewish people met to study God’s word and worship God. (This is not the same as the holy Temple where sacrifices were made.) Jewish people still meet and worship in synagogues today. It is sort of like our church here. As ruler of the synagogue, Jairus would take care of the building and choose which people would participate in the services. He would have been a very well known and respected man. Jairus was an important Jewish leader, but now he was helpless. His 12-year-old daughter was dying (Mark 5:42).

Teacher Note: The synagogue, as we find it in the New Testament, had its roots in the time after Solomon’s Temple was destroyed and many of the people were carried into Exile. Local worship and instruction became necessary. Even after many of the Jews returned to Jerusalem and rebuilt the Temple, places of local worship continued. By the time of Jesus these places and assemblies were called synagogues (Holman Bible Dictionary).

It’s so easy for us to read through this quickly and not give much thought to it. But today, I would like us to see it as it really happened. This was no small act for Jairus. He wasn’t merely inviting Jesus over for coffee; his little girl’s life was at stake! Try to imagine the sight of Jairus falling at the feet of Jesus and begging Him to come heal his little girl. Teacher: Pre-arrange for an adult volunteer fall at your feet and beg in Jairus’ words. This will be awkward and should grab everyone’s attention. Say: Don’t you think everyone was staring at this point? But Jairus didn’t care. His little girl was dying, and he was certain that Jesus could heal her.

Jesus doesn’t always choose to heal people when we want them to be healed. Sometimes He has a different plan - a better plan, as we’ll see in a few minutes. But Jairus had faith that Jesus was ABLE heal his daughter. Jairus went to Jesus, because Jairus was sure that Jesus had power over sickness. Jairus didn’t worry about his what people were thinking about him. Even though he was an important man, he was not ashamed to ask Jesus for help. He didn’t care if people were staring at him.

Jesus loved Jairus and did not hesitate to go with him. Jesus is full of compassion (Matthew 14:14, 20:34). That means He feels the pain that His people feel. Jesus was pleased that Jairus had the faith to come to Him (Hebrews 11:6).

Application: Jesus feels every bit of the pain you feel. You should never be afraid to bring your needs to Jesus. He longs to help you. He has the power to help when no one else can - and the perfect wisdom to always do exactly what is best for you!

A Sick Woman (Mark 5:24-29)


A large group of people followed. They crowded around Him. A woman was there who had a sickness that made her bleed. It had lasted for 12 years. She had suffered a great deal, even though she had gone to many doctors. She had spent all the money she had. But she was getting worse, not better. Then she heard about Jesus. She came up behind him in the crowd and touched his clothes. She thought, “I just need to touch His clothes. Then I will be healed.” Right away her bleeding stopped. She felt in her body that her suffering was over. - Mark 5:24b-29

This poor woman had suffered for many years. The type of bleeding she had can cause problems such as: a really fast heartbeat, low blood pressure, and a low body temperature. All of these things make a person feel terrible. She tried to get help from doctors. The doctors had taken all of her money, but had not healed her. Back then, doctors didn’t know nearly as much as they know now. Their idea of treatment might have been worse than the disease it self. One thing is certain - she was only getting worse. This woman was helpless and hopeless - until she heard about Jesus.

Like Jairus, this woman had faith in Jesus. She was certain that Jesus could heal her. She knew that He was so powerful that if she could just touch the hem of His clothes, she would be healed. Now that’s faith!

We have all been at a swimming pool in the summertime. If a lifeguard hears thunder or sees lightning, what happens? Everyone has to get out of the pool. Say: The lifeguard clears the pool. He knows that if lightning hits the water, the electrical power will travel through the water and shock anyone who is touching the water. You don’t actually have to touch the lighting to be shocked - touching the water that is touched by lightning is enough! Jesus’ power must have worked something like that. His power is greater than that of lightning. By His power, the entire universe was created! All the woman had to do was to touch His clothing, in faith, and she was instantly healed. She could feel the relief wash over her body. There was no question - she was healed.

Say: Everyone put your hands together like this. Teacher: Hold your own hands together, similar to an “arm wrestling” hold - do not lace individual fingers together. Say: When I say “start,” squeeze your hands as hard as you can, and squeeze until I say to let go. “Start!” Teacher: say the following sentences slowly and deliberately. The woman had heart pain and discomfort all over her body, all the time for twelve years. But as soon as she touched Jesus’ clothing, she felt relief. Now, without moving your hands, stop squeezing. Did you feel relief flood into your hands? That’s what she felt! That’s how she knew she was healed. What joy she felt at that moment!

At once Jesus knew that power had gone out from Him. He turned around in the crowd. He asked, “Who touched my clothes?”

“You see the people,” His disciples answered. “They are crowding against You. And You still ask, ‘Who touched Me?’ ”

But Jesus kept looking around. He wanted to see who had touched Him.

Then the woman came and fell at His feet. She knew what had happened to her. She was shaking with fear. But she told Him the whole truth.

He said to her, “Dear woman, your faith has healed you. Go in peace. You are free from your suffering.” - Mark 5:30-34

Many people were crowded around Jesus. Indeed, many people touched Him. But there was something very different about this woman. She knew that she was helpless. She was truly poor in spirit, and she put all her hope in Jesus. So Jesus asked who had touched Him.

Remember, Jesus did not ask questions to gain information. He already knows everything! He knew the answer to every question before He ever asked it! He asked this question for the sake of the woman and those around Him. When He asked who touched Him, the woman became so afraid! The joy she felt over being healed suddenly turned to fear. She must have felt like a child who had been called into the principal’s office! But Jesus didn’t call her forward because she was in trouble. It was just the opposite! He wanted her to know that she had done very well to put her trust in Him.

The woman was healed. Jesus could have left it at that. But Jesus wanted to give her more. He wanted to give her the peace of knowing that He was happy to heal her. She didn’t have to live her life thinking she had “stolen” this blessing. Jesus poured out His grace on her like a big hug! Not only did He heal her, but He also gave her peace. And one more reason Jesus made her known was to make her an example to others. Her faith was an example to those around her that day, and even to us today!

Let’s not forget that Jesus was on His way to Jairus’ house to heal Jairus’ daughter when the woman touched His robe. I can imagine that Jairus, who was worried sick about his dying daughter, may have thought that this woman’s interruption was a bad thing. After all, this woman caused Jesus stop when He should be running to the little girl. But Jesus did not see it that way at all! The sick woman did not catch Jesus by surprise! Jesus is able to work all things together for good for those who love Him (Romans 8:28). Jesus allowed this “interruption” so that Jairus and the others would learn more about Him. Jesus would receive more glory, and their faith would grow stronger.

Application: Jesus will never think of your need as an interruption in His day! And He will never scold you for coming to Him! No, quite the opposite - He will be so pleased that you had the faith to trust Him and bring your need to Him. Every time you bring your needs to Jesus, you are showing that you have faith in Him - you trust that He has the power and compassion to help you.

Jairus’ Daughter Dies (Mark 5:35-43)

Say: Let’s continue reading in Mark 5:35 to see what happened with Jairus’ daughter:

While Jesus was still speaking, some people came from the house of Jairus. He was the synagogue ruler. “Your daughter is dead,” they said. “Why bother (Jesus) the teacher anymore?”

But Jesus didn’t listen to them. He told (Jairus) the synagogue ruler, “Don’t be afraid. Just believe.” - Mark 5:35-36

Jesus had been delayed on the way to Jairus’ home. I can’t even imagine the pain that gripped Jairus’ heart when he heard the news that it was too late. But Jesus, the author of peace, was quick to say to Jairus, “Don’t be afraid. Just believe.” It was in this moment that Jairus had to make a decision. Would he believe the terrible news, or believe in Jesus? Would he stop in his tracks, or continue walking along side the Healer? He had seen that Jesus had power over sickness. Would he believe that Jesus had power over death?

Teacher Note: Perhaps the bleeding woman had crossed their path at just the right moment to strengthen Jairus’ faith. Jairus was about to face a crisis of faith. This may be one more reason that Jesus made the woman’s healing public.

Jairus trusted Jesus and continued walking with Him towards his home. Jairus had seen Jesus heal; now he would see greater things.

(Jesus) let only Peter, James, and John, the brother of James, follow Him. They came to the home of the synagogue ruler. There Jesus saw a lot of confusion. People were crying and sobbing loudly. He went inside. Then He said to them, “Why all this confusion and sobbing? The child is not dead. She is only sleeping.” But they laughed at Him.

He made them all go outside. He took only the child’s father and mother and the disciples who were with Him. And He went in where the child was. He took her by the hand. Then He said to her, “Talitha koum!” This means, “Little girl, I say to you, get up!” The girl was 12 years old. Right away she stood up and walked around. They were totally amazed at this. Jesus gave strict orders not to let anyone know what had happened. And He told them to give her something to eat. - Mark 5:37-43

Jesus told all the people who were crying about the girl’s death that they did not need to cry. But they laughed at Him. God’s ways are so much higher than the ways of people that they simply did not understand what Jesus was saying (Isaiah 55:9). These people did not have faith in Jesus. They were not invited to enter the home and witness the miracle.

It only took a few words for Jesus to raise the girl. This shouldn’t surprise us too much, because it was God’s spoken word that created the world and all the life that is in it! Of course, the girl’s mother and father, and Peter, James, and John were completely amazed. They each knew that Jesus had power over sickness. And the disciples knew that Jesus had power over nature and evil spirits. But now, this handful of people knew that Jesus had power over death. Do you think that Jairus and his wife realized at that moment that God’s own Son was sitting in their daughter’s bedroom? How blessed they were! Not only was their daughter fine, but they had also come face to face with the long-awaited Messiah.

Application: Today, we have seen two beautiful examples of faith. When the sick woman and Jairus were helpless and hopeless, Jesus was the answer. The woman came to Jesus and Jesus brought healing and peace. Jairus put his trust in Jesus, and Jesus brought life where there once was death. In the kingdom of God, suffering ends, hearts are mended, and new life takes the place of death.

Do you have faith, as these two did? Do you trust that Jesus’ way is always the right way? When you are faced with a very difficult problem, will you bring it to Jesus, and will you walk with Jesus wherever He asks you to go?

Do you trust that God’s timing is perfect? Sometimes He allows delays so that you can learn more about Him. Then He will receive more glory and your faith will grow stronger.

If you don’t think you have this kind of faith, simply ask God for a strong faith. Faith is a free gift from your loving heavenly Dad (Ephesians 2:8, 1 Corinthians 12:9). He will gladly give you the gift of faith (Matthew 7:11, James 1:17).


Key Verse:

After the crowd had been sent outside, Jesus went in. He took the girl by the hand, and she got up. - Matthew 9:25


Main Point: Jesus has power over sickness and death.

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Unless otherwise noted the Scriptures taken from: Holy Bible, New International Reader’s Version, (NIrV®)

Copyright © 1995, 1996, 1998 by International Bible Society / Used by permission of IBS-STL. All rights reserved worldwide.

Special thanks to John R. Cross, The Stranger on the Road to Emmaus, GoodSeed International.

Related Topics: Children, Children's Curriculum

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