30 At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”
31“You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’ ”
32 But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. 33 Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. 34He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”
Many times it is hard for Western women of the 21st century to fully comprehend the restrictions that women lived under during the days that Jesus walked the face of the earth. Our culture is so very far removed from the customs and traditions of the ancient Hebrews. In studying what was permitted and what was not permitted, one thing we understand is that Jesus did more to elevate the status of women than any other single human being in all of history. His compassion faileth not.
The woman described in Mark 5, had been ill for twelve (12) long years. Not just a headache. The King James Version calls her ailment as an "issue of blood." Other translations describe her affliction as: "...constant bleeding," "...a discharge of blood,"...."...a hemorrhage,"..."chronic bleeding."..."a bloody flux." Under hygienic social restrictions the woman would have been banished from normal routines. She was considered "unclean." Much like a person diseased with leprosy , she would have been excluded from community activities and forced to announce her "uncleanness" when in a public place. This woman had endured such a heavy weight of afflictions for over a decade. Yet, hope sprang to the forefront of her soul as she heard the testimonies of those others that had been perfectly healed of divers kinds of illnesses. So hopeful was she that she dared to defy the societal restraints that accompanied her affliction and seek relief at any cost. Perhaps it was her desperation that prompted her courage or her courage that circumvented her desperation. Perhaps the two worked in tandem. Nevertheless, the woman assumed a position that would both hide her from judgmental eyes and position her to touch "but the hem of his garment."
On her knees, under the radar of the critical Pharisees, she hunkered down and waited for the crowd to carry Jesus past her quivering body. For she "thought, If I can but touch his clothes, I can be healed." Two very exceptional realities are presented to us in this passage. First, the position of humility is by and far the one that gains ground in the spirit world. We have been versed in the Proverb: "Pride goes before a fall." However, the enemy has done a switcharoo with this verse: Proverbs 61:18 states: " Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall."
The difference is life threatening. If a person believes pride may make them fall, they are rather confident that they can get back up and continue on. But, if pride brings destruction, there is no recovery. Pride is a deadly sin whether you are saved or an unbeliever. Only the opposite spirit will bring us into the healing presence of Almighty God; "...humble yourself under the mighty hand of God and in due season He will lift you up."
Secondly, our unnamed heroine in Mark 5, was tenacious. Not only willing to get as low as necessary to obtain what had been beyond her grasp for twelve very bloody years, but her bold, clandestine assertiveness won for her the desire of her heart. Her remarkable unspoken faith manifested in a prophetic act of laying hold of the goodness of God, even the hem of His anointed garments. Immediately, the issue of blood was dried up and she knew in her body that she was healed.
Amazingly, she was not the only one that knew that healing virtue had flowed downward to fill the valley of despair. Jesus, stopped and asked His disciples to identify the person that had received the healing impartation. Encompassed about by hundreds, maybe thousands of bustling, eager inquirers, the disciples were"put-off" that the Master would even ask such a question. "Are you serious?'' they replied.
Jesus was serious for He had felt the virtue leave his body. Silently he searched for the glow of supernatural health that would be evidenced on someone's countenance. Just a few feet away from Jesus, she suddenly appeared at his feet, again.
Trembling with awe-struck fear and the after -effects of the anointing that breaks every yoke, she haltingly confessed that she was the recipient of His ever-flowing mercy and grace. Kindly, gently, with great compassion the Lord lifts her to her feet and pronounces a blessing: “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”
Do you find it compelling that even though she was already healed, even though Jesus already knew that healing virtue and gone from His body, he still instructs her to go in peace and be freed from suffering. Was this an admonition to throw off the lingering emotional traumas that so often accompany pro-longed physical afflictions.? He released peace over her troubled psyche and instructed her to walk free of any lingering emotions of self-pity, fear or rejection. "God in peace and be freed from your suffering."
Touching the hem of His garment always brings healing. And when we are open with the Lord's questioning, and "tell Him the whole truth," we often find ourselves pouring out of our hearts the horrible years of horrific trauma that will continue to hamper even our healing if not identified and released. Jesus knew this and dealt with this woman on all three levels of her being: 1) physical, "Your faith has healed you. 2) spiritually, "Go in peace." and 3) emotionally, "be free from our suffering."
Let us not neglect such a great salvation! The Lord has truly proided for us everything we need pertaining to life and godliness, let us not give up until we walk healed, whole and in complete peace and freedom.