Slow but certain

Slow but certain

Do not be afraid any longer, only believe. – Mark 5:36

Mark 5:22-42

 22 Then came one of the rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name, and seeing him, he fell at his feet

 35 While he was still speaking, there came from the ruler’s house some who said, “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the Teacher any further?”

 36 But overhearing what they said, Jesus said to the ruler of the synagogue, “Do not fear, only believe.”

 38 They came to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and Jesus saw a commotion, people weeping and wailing loudly.

 39 And when he had entered, he said to them, “Why are you making a commotion and weeping? The child is not dead but sleeping.”

 40 And they laughed at him. But he put them all outside and took the child’s father and mother and those who were with him and went in where the child was.

 41 Taking her by the hand he said to her, “Talitha koum,” which means, “Little girl, I say to you, arise.”

 42 And immediately the girl got up and began walking (for she was twelve years of age), and they were immediately overcome with amazement.

Cardiac arrest strikes almost 600,000 people each year, killing the vast majority of those individuals. About 400,000 occur outside of a hospital and less than 6 percent survive. Approximately 200,000 occur in hospitals, and 24 percent survive.

Each minute is important! Indeed, the likelihood of survival decreases by 10 percent with every passing minute. The time between cardiac arrest onset and the first chest compression is critical.

Timing is often critical for the success of modern medical emergency care procedures. Not so for the Father, the Lord God omnipotent. He is the Lord and commander of time, life, death, health, and recovery. Time and death are not insurmountable obstacles for the Father, they are no more than already vanquished tiny grains of sand. To the Father, death is but sleep.

One day He will awaken everyone who sleeps (1 Thessalonians 4:17, Revelation 20:11-12).

When the daughter of Jairus was extremely ill and death was looming, he sought the best medical intervention possible. He came to the Lord Jesus Christ and asked Him to come and lay hands on her (Mark 5:23). The Lord Jesus Christ responded and accompanied Jairus to make a house call. Seemingly, the timing was critical, and He needed to get there before it was “too late.”

But, on the way a woman with an incurable disease, in desperate need of medical attention, stealthily and cautiously approached the Lord Jesus Christ. She reached out and touched His garment and was immediately made whole. He stopped in His tracks. He was aware that the power of life had gone out. He looked around searching the faces in the crowd to identify the person of faith who had been healed. The woman came forward and He comforted her.

He did a bit of spiritual triage. Which is more critical and requires immediate care: a terminal condition with fast-approaching death or a chronic and inconvenient health issue? The Lord Jesus Christ is never controlled or bound by human conjecture or opinion. His ways and thoughts are higher than ours and He is constantly in touch with the Father, receiving direction and guidance.

How much time elapsed? Mark does not tell us. But now bad news arrived. The word reached them that it was “too late.” The little girl had already died. The Lord Jesus did not flinch, He proceeded on to the home of Jairus.

Jairus must have been heartbroken. Yet the Lord Jesus Christ did not comfort Jairus when the news of his daughter’s death came. He challenged him to faith instead. Regardless of our circumstances, God always urges us on to faith and away from fear (Barclay).


The Father is in control. He has a plan and also a precise time for completion. We can trust Him to accomplish His perfect will.

Father, it is so easy to fall into fear in the face of tough, demanding obstacles. Challenge me to faith.


This was not a resuscitation or healing. It was a resurrection from death to life. The little girl’s family and friends would not have mistaken near death for actual death. They had already begun to mourn. But for the Lord Jesus Christ, death, the separation of the soul from the body, is nothing more than sleep.

The crowd was not amused but mockingly laughed when He boldly declared, “The child is not dead but sleeping” (Mark 5:39).

What happens next is remarkably vivid, beautiful, and poignant. The original words that Jesus spoke in Aramaic are preserved for us. Taking the little girl’s hand in His, Jesus said, “Talitha Koum.”

The Aramaic Talitha translates as “little girl” or “little lady” or more literally, little lamb. Talitha is a feminine form of the word for “lamb” or “youth.” Koum is an imperative meaning “arise!”

Can you hear the tender but authoritative words as they fall on the little girl’s cold, dull ears? Can you see her eyes flutter and open wide? The first thing she saw was the face of Jesus, and then the faces of her mother and father, and then the three enraptured apostles (Hughes)!

In difficult, challenging, or even horrific circumstances we have a choice between fear and faith. When we exercise faith, the face of Jesus is not too far off.


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