In our church, we are going thru the Gospel of Mark. In Mark 5 there is the wonderful account of a woman who had an issue of blood for 12 years. According to Lev 15, this meant that this woman had spent those 12 years in an experience of walking death. Everyone she touched became ritually unclean. She was prohibited from engaging in activities in the Temple, which represented the presence of God and the worship of Him. It is hard for us to comprehend what her life must have been like.
Added to that, Mark tells us that she had spent her everything she had on doctors in an attempt to be cured from this affliction (Mark 5:26). Clearly, a cure was not to be had. Eventually, we could assume this malady would lead to her death.
But she had heard about Jesus’ ability to heal, and He had come to her region. Perhaps she had even seen Him heal others. In Mark 3:10 it says that the sick were touching Jesus and were healed. She decided she would do the same.
She thought if she could touch His clothes she would be healed. My guess is that this would be a scary undertaking for someone who made others unclean by simply touching them for the last 12 year. When she touched the Lord, she was healed completely and instantaneously.
Jesus knew that someone was healed by touching Him. When He saw her, He said, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace, and be healed of your affliction” (Mark 5:34). He wanted her to know that it was her faith, not magic clothes that caused her healing.
The part of the Lord’s statement that caught my eye was when He told her to “go in peace.” For 12 years she had had no peace with anyone. She had been afflicted in every area of her life. The fact that she had been set free from her “affliction” meant more than she no longer had a physical ailment.
Recently, GES had a regional conference in Charlotte. The topic was Romans 5–8. That section starts off with this statement: “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Rom 5:1). When a person believes in Jesus for eternal life, he is declared righteous by God. Prior to that, the unbeliever is under the wrath of God. His experience is the opposite of being at peace. He is under the power of sin with no way out. His experience is one of death. But with faith in Christ, he has peace with God.
I cannot help but see this woman in Mark 5 as an illustration of what happens to the believer. She knew what had happened to her. She knew what a difference her faith in Jesus made. Before, she was alienated from the Temple and the presence of God, but the Messiah had changed everything. It is interesting to me that this is the only place in the NT where Jesus calls someone by the tender title of “daughter.” She was now at peace.
When we believed in Jesus we went from enmity with God to peace. We were set free from the power of sin. Prior to that, we were afflicted in ways we did not even realize.
Don’t you know that that woman walked away from her encounter with the Lord full of joy? She knew what the peace Jesus brought her meant. Do we?