Reading: Luke 8
Summary: Luke gives interesting insight into the group who accompanied Jesus as He traveled and preached. Not only did it include the twelve, but also a number of women. Notice also the mention of financial support.
Jesus’ ministry continues in familiar fashion with teaching in parables, healing the sick, raising the dead, casting out demons, and even calming a storm. Interjected among these events is a rare encounter with Jesus’ physical family.
Dead or Asleep?
Has someone ever said or done something so silly or ridiculous that you laughed at them? The intention may not be to be demeaning or hurtful, but the suggestion is just so outlandish it can’t be helped. There’s nothing to do but laugh.
This happened to Jesus. Not that He laughed at anyone, but people laughed at Him. And they did so for the very reasons mentioned above. What Jesus had said was just so ridiculous, they couldn’t help but laugh. And what was that? He suggested that mourners should not weep because Jairus’ daughter was “not dead but sleeping” (John 8:52).
And wasn’t it laughable? This girl was dead. So yes, from a human perspective the suggestion was ludicrous. Asleep? You’ve got to be kidding! And no, Jesus was not saying that she was literally in the condition of slumber from which anyone could awaken her. That requires no special ability or power; it’s not difficult at all. For Jesus, though, raising the dead was not difficult either; about like waking up someone asleep.
Death is totally beyond our capacity to control, but not for Jesus. He took the girl by the hand, said, “Child arise,” and her spirit returned to her and she got up at once. As simple as gently shaking someone from a restful sleep.
The truly laughable thing is that anyone would fail to bow in absolute submission to Jesus Christ, Lord of both the living and the dead.