Today we again see people running to Jesus, this time to receive His healing power in their lives. They bring their loved ones to the Lord, hoping to get them close enough to be made well. While we do not always realize it, we still need Jesus’ help in our lives today just as much as the crowds of first century Galilee.
The Text (Mark 6:35-44)
53 When they had crossed over, they came to the land of Gennesaret and anchored there. 54 And when they came out of the boat, immediately the people recognized Him, 55 ran through that whole surrounding region, and began to carry about on beds those who were sick to wherever they heard He was. 56 Wherever He entered, into villages, cities, or the country, they laid the sick in the marketplaces, and begged Him that they might just touch the hem of His garment. And as many as touched Him were made well.
As Jesus’ traveling ministry throughout Galilee continues, people are now literally running to see Him. The storm that Jesus walked through on the Sea has apparently blown the disciples off course, redirecting them from their Bethsaida destination on the northeast shore to Gennesaret on the northwest shore. Jesus is a great celebrity by now. Everywhere He goes, the people immediately recognize Him and spread the word that He has arrived. People are running not just to see Him themselves, but to fetch and return with sick family and friends that they might be healed, too. As Jesus walks through the towns and countryside, people with all kinds of physical illnesses and injuries are laid out before Him, desperately reaching out just to touch the hem (folded edges) of his robes. Like the woman with the flow of blood from chapter five, these people believe that contact with Jesus will heal them. And God honors their faith; whoever touches Jesus’ clothing is made well. The Lord Jesus does not turn away any of those who come to Him in honest, humble faith. What an incredible sight this must have been!
When was the last time you ran to Jesus? We have so much today that it is often hard for us to realize our desperate need for God. Sometimes God has to take things away from us, even our health, to get us to see how badly we need Him. A great application of today’s passage would be to spend some time really praying for friends and families struggling with their health. The Galileans were desperate to get to Jesus for healing, not just for themselves, but for their loved ones. I tried this type of prayer last night, and I found that God also led me to pray for the spiritual health of my family, friends, coworkers, and students, too. Even those who are currently blessed with good physical health still need God’s ongoing work of sanctification. We are all struggling with trials and challenges as we press on in our walk with Christ. We need Jesus’ help every day. We need prayer like we need the air we breathe. Try running to Jesus in your prayers for yourself and others. You will find a sweet fellowship with the Lord as you come boldly before His throne of grace.