Saturday, June 4, 2016

June 5, 2016

“While he was saying this, a synagogue leader came and knelt before him and said, “My daughter has just died. But come and put your hand on her, and she will live.”  Jesus got up and went with him, and so did his disciples.  Just then a woman who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak.  She said to herself, “If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed.” Jesus turned and saw her. “Take heart, daughter,” he said, “your faith has healed you.” And the woman was healed at that moment. When Jesus entered the synagogue leader’s house and saw the noisy crowd and people playing pipes, he said, “Go away. The girl is not dead but asleep.” But they laughed at him. After the crowd had been put outside, he went in and took the girl by the hand, and she got up. News of this spread through all that region.”  Matthew 9:18-26

“What determines your reality? How do you decide what is real?”

That is a very important question. You need to have a very good answer. Over the next few posts I want to share some examples of people whose faith shaped their reality. They believed what they believed more than they believed what they saw. Christ was more real to them than their circumstances.

Two great examples are shown in these several verses from Matthew 9.

The local synagogue leader – and position of respect and influence in any community – came to Jesus bearing news that was all too real, his beloved daughter laid dead at home. But he made an amazing statement, ““My daughter has just died. But come and put your hand on her, and she will live.”

Wow! Here is a guy who should have been grieving but instead – he was believing! This dad refused to let death have the last word with his daughter. Though there was nothing he could do he knew that Jesus was in town and was convinced that Jesus WAS the Son of God. So his thought process went something like this – Jesus is in town. Jesus in the Messiah come from God. God is the Creator and Giver of life. Therefore, Jesus is connected to the source of life and He should be able to raise my daughter from the dead. THAT was his new reality – his faith in Jesus.

Since he believed so strongly in Jesus, Jesus was able to believe in this guy and He arose to follow this fellow home to raise his deceased daughter. But before they made it to the end of the block a woman with a debilitating blood disease took her opportunity to touch the Master’s garment. There is an important reason she reached for the hem of his garment and I recommend you do some research on it.

Matthew reveals what she was thinking as she reached to touch Jesus, ‘She said to herself, “If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed.’” Her affliction was real, but her faith was more real. She had a faith that changed her reality. She came with a disease and went home completely healed.

Jesus and the synagogue leader then sped their way to his home. As Jesus entered the house He saw the evidence of a death – mourners and music. Speaking to them, Jesus ordered them to leave. Mourners are for the dead and this girl was not going to be dead. That caused them to mock Him because they were locked into a different reality than He was.

After the commotion was stilled, Jesus went to where the daughter was laid and He proceeded to raise her back to life in respect to the great faith of her father. The father’s faith became reality. By letting Jesus have the last word, death did not.

So, I ask you, “Does reality shape your faith or does your faith shape reality?”