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act of submission; so she, in like manner, expréssed her reverence and faith, and in a moment she felt health return to her feeble frame.
After the first emotions of surprise and joy, she was about to retire unseen, when Jesus, who knew that from himself, as the source of life and health, healing virtue had gone forth, turned about in the crowd, and inquired, “Who touched my clothes ?" Not that he needed to be informed, for he knew who had received the benefit. Nor was he about to chide the trembling woman for her boldness. He designed that she should confess him before the assembled throng, that her faith might be manifested, and Jairus encouraged; whilst, at the same time, his Divine omniscience and power should be displayed before them all.
Master,” said the disciples, “thou seest the multitude on all sides: it is impossible, in such a crowd, to avoid pressing against thee; and dost thou inquire, Who touched me?” Our Lord knew that it was not the accidental pressure of the people, but the touch of faith; and then graciously looked toward the woman, who, perceiving that she was discovered, cast herself at his feet, confessed what she had done, and that she had obtained a cure. No word of reproof was heard ; but, to remove her fears, and complete her joy, his lips confirmed her deliverance." Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole:” thy faith is the means, the instrument, of thy recovery; the power, the virtue, was not in the garment, but in me. From that hour, the woman was healed of her disease.
JESUS AT THE HOUSE OF JAIRUS.
This miracle wrought, Jairus again prepared to lead the way, while the Saviour is yet speaking; perhaps, according to his custom, improving the woman's recovery to her spiritual good; and the disciples and the multitude are already on their progress. The cure that had just been effected must have encouraged the hope of the anxious father. He had heard by report, but now he had witnessed, the miraculous power of the great Teacher. It was as though he already embraced in his arms the restored child; when messengers are seen hurrying along the road: they come from the ruler's house, and soon relate the painful tidings, that it is now of no further use to trouble the Master, for the child is dead-gone beyond the reach of prayer and human help! Oh, how the father's heart must have sunk within him, as he turned aside to weep; while the thought, probably, arose within him, that had it not been for the delay, his daughter might yet have lived !
This new distress only still further displayed the compassion of Christ. He immediately turned to the afflicted parent, to console and encourage him. “ As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, he saith unto the ruler of the synagogue, Be not afraid, only believe, and she shall be made whole.” Fear not, since I am with thee. All shall be well, hopeless as the case appears to you.
Your child shall live; for I have as much power over the dead as the dying; I can as easily bring back those who have passed into the eternal world, as I can arrest their entrance to it. And thou shalt yet find that the delay will only make the mercy the more valued, when it is received: only believe.
They now all went forward, and as they came near to the house, they found the people weeping and wailing greatly, and the minstrels making a noise. In this country, we weep in solitude for those we have lost; we conceal our sorrow from the world: but among the eastern nations, the expressions of grief are violent, and are indulged publicly; hired mourners are engaged to feign distress, who shriek with all the appearance of the utmost despair. During the time the body lies in the house,
049 SLEEPING CHAMBER IN AN EASTERN HOUSE. -MOURNING FOR
TIIE DRAD. when on the
way to the
and for eight days
afterwards, the same excessive grief is displayed. Such was the practice in the days of the prophets, Jer. ix. 17,20; Amosv. 16.* The number of people who attended around the house where one had died, was generally great; and as Jairus was a person of authority, and as his daughter may have been much beloved, many would visit the house, to express their sorrow and sympathy.
Jesus entered the house, attended only by three of his disciples, and the parents of the child. On beholding some of the mourners who were in the room, he commanded them to retire, chiding them for their unseemly noise : Why make ye this ado, and weep?” He then addressed words of comfort to the agitated parents:
“ The damsel is not dead, but sleepeth;” meaning, that her death was only like a short sleep, and that he should soon awake her, as from her slumbers, into perfect health. When some of the people heard his words, they rudely derided him. There may have been something connected with the disorder of so fatal a character, or the proofs of death were so evident, that they were certain she was now lifeless—that her spirit had departed into the unseen world, " and they laughed him to scorn." all out of the room, except those whom he had selected to be the witnesses of the miracle.
When Elijah raised the dead, he first “cried unto the Lord, and the Lord heard his voice," 1 Kings xvii. 21, 22; Elisha “ prayed unto the
* Jews, as well as heathens, hired players on musical instruments, when a death occurred in a family, to soothe and calm the feelings of the relatives. Flutes, and a kind of flageolet, were played at the death of children; but instruments of louder tone when an adult died : the hired mourners sung to the music in a soft and plaintive manner.
He now put
Lord,” when he raised the son of the Shunammite, 2 Kingsiv. 33; Peter“ kneeled down, and prayed,” before Dorcas was restored to life, Acts ix. 40; but Jesus, with majesty, and as the Lord of life and death, took hold of the hand of the maiden, as though he were about to raise her from a pleasant sleep, and said, “Talitha cumi,” or, Damsel, arise!” The words were no sooner spoken, than the departed spirit returned to its earthly abode, the colour of health again glowed on her cheeks, the eyes beamed with life, and she arose as if only awoke out of a refreshing sleep. Oh! who can conceive the delight with which the parents pressed their child to their bosoms: while she threw her arms around their necks, and then looked with wonder and surprise at the Saviour ! “ The maiden arises ! Gaze, gaze with delight,
'Tis no dream of the mind, no deceit of the sight. She arises, she walks ! to your fondling embrace Take the joy of your home, the sole hope of your race: The song for her second nativity raise, And the funeral dirge change for anthems of praise. But stint not your praise to the blessings of earth, This day be the dawn of a heavenly birth!" It is not every spared life that is devoted to the service of God: nor, it is to be feared, did all become the followers of Christ, who received blessings from him when he journeyed on this earth. It was doubtless then, as it is now; many were raised out of their afflictions, who returned again to the follies of the world, forgetful of Him whose mercy they had experienced. Yet who does not indulge the hope, that this “ little maid” became a true disciple of the Saviour?
Again we see the compassion and thoughtful concern of the Saviour: to show that the maid was