Two Daughters

Steven Bouma-Prediger

READ : Mark 5:21-43

“Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace, and be healed of your disease.”

(v. 34)

One daughter was twelve years old. The other daughter had suffered from a menstrual
problem for twelve years and thus was perpetually unclean. One daughter was the much
beloved child of a prominent leader of the local synagogue. The other daughter was
nameless, homeless, and alone. One daughter was near death. The other daughter wished she
were dead – except that she had heard about a wandering Jewish rabbi with the power to
heal. And so she veiled herself, approached him as part of a large crowd, and secretly
touched his coat.

But then her worst fears came true. She was found out. Knowing her dire predicament,
she threw herself at Jesus’ feet and appealed to his mercy, spitting out her whole sad
story. As the crowd gasped and parted, some began to gather rocks to stone her for making
them unclean and violating the Law. Others expected (at least) harsh words of judgment
from Jesus. Instead, having listened to her story, Jesus said: “Daughter, your faith has
made you well; go in peace.” So, too, with the other daughter; because of faith Jairus’s
daughter is raised from the dead. Both healings testify to the presence of God’s kingdom and the power of faith.


Help us to rest in your mercy, God of grace upon grace, and increase our