The Woman With An Issue of Blood

Mark 5: 21-43

During his earthly ministry, Jesus healed many people. Why did he heal those sick people? He healed those sick people as signs of God’s kingdom. That’s why right at the beginning of his ministry he said that he came to give sight to the blind, release the oppressed etc and proclaim the year of the Lord. Therefore he did not heal people to surprise people or to advertise his ministry. They were integrally connected to the main purpose of his ministry.

In our today’s gospel passage, we listened to two such healings done by Jesus. Let’s look at these two healings carefully. First of all an influential Roman officer came to Jesus openly and asked him to heal his daughter. Then before he went to Jairus’s house in between we get another interesting incident of healing.

This time it was not an influential powerful person but a woman with an issue of blood. This woman has spent all her wealth to have healing. Now she is poor. She is helpless and hopeless. In this desperate situation, she approaches Jesus.

When she approached Jesus she had to face a big issue which is not elaborated in the text. In that society woman with an issue of blood could not come openly and tell her problem to Jesus. Because she was considered unclean. Now what can she do? On the other hand, if she touches another person that person also becomes unclean. She hasn’t got any option to approach Jesus.

I am sure she would have contemplated on this issue. Finally, she decided to touch the hem of Jesus’ garment. Did Jesus ever ask people to touch his garment to get healing? Then how did she learn this? Touching a powerful person or a holy object to get consolation is a very old custom still practised in our society. I am sure you have seen this in your society.

According to this ancient custom when this woman with an issue of blood touched the hem of Jesus’ garment he accepted that act and encouraged her. Why did Jesus accept this act?

Jesus accepted this act because of the helpless and hopeless situation of this woman. In this story, the writer tries to give the mindset of Jesus in an indirect manner. After listening to the request of Jairus Jesus created space for this desperate woman to have the courage to face society.

As his disciples through this account, we have an important message from Jesus. Often we are busy with powerful and influential businesses. These businesses often alienate us from the hopeless and helpless people of our society.

As Jesus did it is our responsibility to create space for those people to come out of their desperate conditions to face society with courage and determination. As we deal with these people sometimes we find that their way of thinking is different from our way of thinking. At times these thinking patterns can even contradict each other.

Here we should remember that the most important thing is to understand them and their way of thinking to redeem them from various bondages.

Therefore let us ask God to give us his grace to expand our boundaries to understand others to enable them to face their future with courage and determination.