Pity and Power (Luke 8:22ff)
Wind and Waves (verses 22-25)
With at least four experienced seamen aboard, they had probably attempted all the usual protocol to save the ship, but the storm was stronger than most, and the disciples were perishing. Even in the midst of the heaving sea and the howling wind and the hysterical disciples, Jesus is majestically calm, ready to show pity toward the faltering faith of the disciples, and to exercise His power to save them. When Jesus rises to rebuke the storm, it is quieted in complete and abrupt submission, proving that He is both creation’s Creator and creation’s Lord. Rebuked for their lack of faith, the disciples turn from their fear of the storm, which is impersonal and non-holy, to fear, astonishment, awe, and amazement of Jesus, who is personal and Holy.
What comfort can you find in knowing that your Savior is also Creation’s Lord who shows pity and exercises power in rescuing His own? What are the heaving seas and howling winds in your life? What might it look like in each of those situations to turn away from panic and sinful fear, to a calm and reverent fear of Christ in light of His complete authority?
Demoniac Delivered (verses 26-39)
The demoniac falls at Jesus’ feet in fear, calling Him “Christ, Son of the Most High God,” and gives the answer to the question that the disciples had asked, “Who then is this?” The demons knew their ultimate demise, and requested permission to enter the pigs. The mighty forces of nature obey Him, and the evil spirits do what He commands. Yet, the townspeople, with hard, callous, fearful hearts, would rather have Him go far away than have to abandon the sins that they love so much. Rather than granting the new disciple’s wish to go with Jesus, Jesus tells him to stay where he is that he might proclaim the greatness of God in his present context. In this we see that true missionary activity begins at home.
In what ways do you see God’s wisdom in placing you exactly where you are, right now? How might you be increasingly intentional about proclaiming the greatness of God in your present context?
Hemorrhage Healed (verses 43-48)
This woman had spent 12 years as one who is unclean, her and all she came in contact with. Everything she touched, everywhere she sat, whoever she came near became unclean. She could have no fellowship, no social interaction, and no worship at the synagogue. Yet her hopeless grief becomes joyous relief as she touched Jesus not just with her fingers, but with faith.
Jairus and Jesus (verses 40-42; 49-56)
While the townspeople of Gerasene said, “Please go away,” Jairus came to Jesus saying, “Please come!” He did not demand anything, but rather came utterly desperate. While Jesus is displaying His power and pity in the healing of the woman, hope is fading for Jairus’ daughter, and eventually the delay results in the little girl’s untimely death. Jesus’ instructions are simply to believe; to believe that He is who He says He is, and to put all hope in Him. As Jesus takes her by the hand, life and immediate health are restored to her. Jesus shows that in the midst of spiritual activity, He is also very practical, concerned that something be given her to eat. It is another display of His power in raising her from the dead and pity in noticing her hunger.
– In what other ways in Scripture do we see that God cares for us both in our spiritual needs as well as our practical needs?