The crowd in Capernaum surrounded Jesus. Some people knew Him, some didn’t. Some, like his close friends, knew him well; others were simply curious, enjoying the excitement in the air. But one person in this crowd, a woman, used the swarms of people to hide. She knew enough about Jesus to believe that one touch from Him could provide her relief from years of suffering.
Luke 8: 43-48
43 And there was a woman who had a discharge of blood for twelve years, and though she had spent all her living on physicians, she could not be healed by anyone. 44 She came up behind him and touched the fringe of his garment, and immediately her discharge of blood ceased. 45 And Jesus said, “Who was it that touched me?” When all denied it, Peter said, “Master, the crowds surround you and are pressing in on you!” 46 But Jesus said, “Someone touched me, for I perceive that power has gone out from me.” 47 And when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling, and falling down before him declared in the presence of all the people why she had touched him, and how she had been immediately healed. 48 And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace.”
This woman had spent the last twelve years of her life, (and quite possibly her bank account), pursuing a cure for her ailment. Yet, she continued to suffer. She had tried everything, everything but Jesus.
She likely fought a crushing crowd to see Jesus. She might have heard about his previous miracles. Who knows? No matter what drove her to reach out to Christ that day, she believed if she could simply touch the edge of His clothing she would be healed. It is on that belief that she joined the multitudes surrounding Jesus.
I love verse 44, where she reaches out and touches the fringe on Jesus’ robe and immediately the blood that had flowed for twelve constant years dries up and she is healed.
Immediately. Oh we serve a wonderful Savior!
What happens next makes me laugh. Jesus asks, “Who touched me?”
Jesus already knew the woman who had touched Him. He knew her as intimately as He knows you and me. I think he asked who touched him in order to share publicly what had transpired in secret. His disciples respond in puzzlement. They likely scanned the throngs of people surrounding them scratching their heads. “Many people are touching you,” they said.
Many people were touching Jesus, but only one reached out with intention. Only one reached out in faith. This was the touch Jesus acknowledged. Every time a person reaches out to Jesus in faith he acknowledges the action. Every time.
She comes before Him trembling, falling at His feet and thanking him for her cure. She openly declares that one touch had cured what twelve years of doctors could not. By recognizing her publicly Jesus declares that this unclean woman was now clean. He was not limited or intimated by the Old Testament laws prohibiting this touch. He touched her and allowed her to go, healed, whole and clean.
Ladies, where are you? Have you reached out with intent? Do you stretch out your arm yearning for close and personal contact with Jesus? Or are you in the surging crowd, excited to be close to Him but carrying no real desire to connect on an intimate level?
Jesus response shows us that he desires more from his daughters than a general knowledge of His capabilities. He wants to draw us out from the concealing crowd. He wants us to stand before Him and say, “I believe.” He wants us to know Him, intimately and completely. He wants to look upon us with tenderness, call us HIS daughter, and whisper those precious words: Your faith has made you well.