Luke 8:43
And a woman having an issue of blood twelve years, which had spent all her living upon physicians, neither could be healed of any,
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(43) Neither could be healed of any.—It is, perhaps, worth noting that while St. Luke records the failure of the physicians to heal the woman, he does not add, as St. Mark does, that she “rather grew worse” (Mark 5:26).



Luke 8:43 - Luke 8:48

The story of Jairus’s daughter is, as it were, cut in two by that of the poor invalid woman. What an impression of calm consciousness of power and of leisurely dignity is made by Christ’s having time to pause, even on His way to a dying sufferer, in order to heal, as if parenthetically, this other afflicted one! How Jairus must have chafed at the delay! He had left his child ‘at the point of death’ and here was the Healer loitering, as it must have seemed to a father’s agony of impatience.

But Jesus, with His infinite calm and as infinite power, can afford to let the one wait and even die, while He tends the other. The child shall receive no harm, and her sister in sorrow has as great a claim on Him as she. He has leisure of heart to feel for each, and power for both. We do not rob one another of His gifts. Attending to one, He does not neglect another.

This miracle illustrates the genuineness and power of feeble and erroneous faith, and Christ’s merciful way of strengthening and upholding it. The woman, a poor, shrinking creature, has been made more timid by long illness, disappointed hopes of cure, and by poverty. She does not venture to stop Jesus, as He goes with an important official of the synagogue to heal his daughter, but creeps up in the crowd behind Him, puts out a wasted, trembling hand to touch the tasselled fringe of His robe-and she is whole.

She would fain have glided away with a stolen cure, but Jesus forced her to stand out before the throng, and with all their eyes on her, to conquer diffidence and womanly reticence, and tell all the truth. Strange contrast, this, to His usual avoidance of notoriety and regard for shrinking weakness! But it was true kindness, for it was the discipline by which her imperfect faith was cleared and confirmed.

It is easy to point out the imperfections in this woman’s faith. It was very ignorant. She was sure that this Rabbi would heal her, but she expected it to be done by the material contact of her finger with His robe. She had no idea that Christ’s will, much less His love, had anything to do with His cures. She thinks that she may carry away the blessing, and He be none the wiser. It is easy to say, What blank ignorance of Christ’s way of working! what grossly superstitious notions! Yes, and with them all what a hunger of intense desire to be whole, and what absolute confidence that a finger-tip on His robe was enough!

Her faith was very imperfect, but the main fact is that she had it. Let us be thankful for a living proof of the genuineness of ignorant and even of superstitious faith. There are many now who fall with less excuse into a like error with this woman’s, by attaching undue importance to externals, and thinking more of the hem of the garment and its touch by a finger than of the heart of the wearer and the grasp of faith. But while we avoid such errors, let us not forget that many a poor worshipper clasping a crucifix may be clinging to the Saviour, and that Christ does accept faith which is tied to outward forms, as He did this woman’s.

There was no real connection between the touch of her finger and her healing, but she thought that there was, and Christ stoops to her childish thought, and lets her make the path for His gift. ‘According to thy faith be it unto thee’: His mercy, like water, takes the shape of the containing vessel.

The last part of the miracle, when the cured woman is made the bold confessor, is all shaped so as to correct and confirm her imperfect faith. We note this purpose in every part of it. She had thought of the healing energy as independent of His knowledge and will. Therefore she is taught that He was aware of the mute appeal, and of the going out of power in answer to it. The question, ‘Who touched me?’ has been regarded as a proof that Jesus was ignorant of the person; but if we keep the woman’s character and the nature of her disease in view, we can suppose it asked, not to obtain information, but to lead to acknowledgment, and that without ascribing to Him in asking it any feigning of ignorance.

The contrast between the pressure of the crowd and the touch of faith has often been insisted on, and carries a great lesson. The unmannerly crowd hustled each other, trod on His skirts, and elbowed their way to gape at Him, and He took no heed. But His heart detected the touch, unlike all the rest, and went out with healing power towards her who touched. We may be sure that, though a universe waits before Him, and the close-ranked hosts of heaven stand round His throne, we can reach our hands through them all, and get the gifts we need.

She had shrunk from publicity, most naturally. But if she had stolen away, she would have lost the joy of confession and greater blessings than the cure. So He mercifully obliges her to stand forth. In a moment she is changed from a timid invalid to a confessor. A secret faith is like a plant growing in the dark, the stem of which is blanched and weak, and its few blossoms pale and never matured. ‘With the mouth confession is made unto salvation.’

Christ’s last word to her is tender. He calls her ‘Daughter’-the only woman whom He addressed by such a name. He teaches her that her faith, not her finger, had been the medium through which His healing power had reached her. He confirms by His authoritative word the furtive blessing: ‘Be whole of thy plague.’ And she goes, having found more than she sought, and felt a loving heart where she had only seen a magic-working robe.

8:41-56 Let us not complain of a crowd, and a throng, and a hurry, as long as we are in the way of our duty, and doing good; but otherwise every wise man will keep himself out of it as much as he can. And many a poor soul is healed, and helped, and saved by Christ, that is hidden in a crowd, and nobody notices it. This woman came trembling, yet her faith saved her. There may be trembling, where yet there is saving faith. Observe Christ's comfortable words to Jairus, Fear not, believe only, and thy daughter shall be made whole. No less hard was it not to grieve for the loss of an only child, than not to fear the continuance of that grief. But in perfect faith there is no fear; the more we fear, the less we believe. The hand of Christ's grace goes with the calls of his word, to make them effectual. Christ commanded to give her meat. As babes new born, so those newly raised from sin, desire spiritual food, that they may grow thereby.See this passage explained in the notes at Matthew 9:18-26, and Mark 5:21-43. Lu 8:40-56. Jairus' Daughter Raised and Issue of Blood Healed.

(See on [1603]Mt 9:18-26; and [1604]Mr 5:21-43).

40. gladly received him, for … all waiting for him—The abundant teaching of that day (in Mt 13:1-58; and see Mr 4:36), had only whetted the people's appetite; and disappointed, as would seem, that He had left them in the evening to cross the lake, they remain hanging about the beach, having got a hint, probably through some of His disciples, that He would be back the same evening. Perhaps they witnessed at a distance the sudden calming of the tempest. Here at least they are, watching for His return, and welcoming Him to the shore. The tide of His popularity was now fast rising.

See Poole on "Luke 8:41"

And a woman having an issue of blood twelve years,.... The Persic version reads, "there was a woman in that city", &c. in the city of Capernaum; See Gill on Matthew 9:20.

Which had spent all her living upon physicians; she had applied to one physician and another, and had consumed all her substance in this way:

neither could be healed of any; though she had followed the directions and prescriptions of many, who pretended they were able to cure her; See Gill on Mark 5:26.

And a woman having an issue of blood twelve years, which had spent all her {n} living upon physicians, neither could be healed of any,

(n) All that she had to live upon.

Luke 8:43-48. The woman with an issue (Matthew 9:20-22, Mark 5:25-34).

43. which had spent all her living] Literally, ‘having in addition spent’ her-whole means of livelihood.

neither could be healed op any] St Luke, perhaps with a fellow- feeling for physicians, does not add the severer comment of St Mark, that the physicians had only made her worse (Mark 5:26). The Talmudic receipts for the cure of this disease were specially futile, such as to set the sufferer in a place where two ways meet, with a cup of wine in her hand, and let some one come behind and frighten her, and say, Arise from thy flux; or “dig seven ditches, burn in them some cuttings of vines not four years old, and let her sit in them in succession, with a cup of wine in her hand, while at each remove some one says to her, Arise from thy flux.” (Lightfoot, Hor. Hebr. ad loc.)

Luke 8:43. Ἰατροῖς, physicians) Luke, being a physician himself, writes candidly.—προσαναλώσασα) The πρὸς implies, besides his affliction of body.—οὐκ ἴσχυσενθεραπευθῆναι) was not able—to be healed, i.e. the physicians were not able to heal her.

Verses 43, 44. - And a woman having an issue of blood twelve years, which had spent all her living upon physicians, neither could be healed of any, came behind him, and touched the border of his garment. It may be assumed that the disease from which she suffered made her, according to the Levitical Law, ceremonially unclean: this had separated her in a great measure for a very long period from all contact with the outer world. This would well account for her shrinking from any public appeal to the great Physician. The border of the Lord's garment which the woman touched was one of the four tassels which formed part of the Jewish tallith, or mantle; one of these was always arranged so as to hang down over the shoulder at the back; it was this one which the sufferer's fingers grasped. There was a certain sacredness about these tassels, as being part of the memorial dress enjoined by the Levitical Law, which, no doubt, induced the woman to touch this particular portion of the Saviour's dress. And immediately her issue of blood stanched. This is not the only instance of this kind of strange faith mingled with superstition being signally rewarded. The case of the miraculous efficacy of the handkerchiefs and aprons which had had contact with Paul's body (Acts 19:12) is an interesting example. A still more startling one exists in the healing influence of the shadow of Peter falling on the sick as he passed along the street (Acts 5:15). The lesson evidently intended to be left on the Church of Christ by this and similar incidents is a very instructive one. Faith in Christ is a broad inclusive term: it is accepted and blest by the Master, as we see from the gospel story, in all its many degrees of development, from the elementary shape which it assumed in the case of this poor loving superstitious soul, to the splendid proportions which it reached in the lives of a Stephen and a Paul. Faith in him, from its rudest form to its grandest development, the Master knew would ever purify and elevate the character. It would, as it grew, be the best teacher and the truest monitor of the noble, generous life he loved. Therefore he watched for it, encouraged it, helped it; and his Church, if it would imitate its Master, would do well to follow his wise and loving example by fostering in every form, however crude, faith m Jesus Christ; for this incident in the Divine and perfect life which we have just dwelt on, teaches us with striking clearness that he can and will bless the dimmest, most imperfect faith, the faith of the little child, and of the poorest untaught one. Luke 8:43Had spent (προσαναλώσασα)

Only here in New Testament. Some texts omit who had spent all her living upon physicians. Luke, with professional sensitiveness, omits Mark's statement that she had suffered many things from many physicians, and was not bettered but made worse.

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