A FAITH THAT WORKS
"For she said within herself, If I may but touch [the hem of] his garment, I shall be whole." Matt 9:21 (KJV)
That woman's faith was not a passive faith; but a faith that works! When she touched the fringe on the hem of Jesus' garment, she not only wanted healing for her body, she was reaching out for forgiveness and cleansing from sin. The fringe/tassel was a reminder to the children of Israel to obey the commandments of the LORD.
"Speak unto the children of Israel, and bid them that they make them fringes in the borders of their garments throughout their generations, and that they put upon the fringe of the borders a ribband of blue: And it shall be unto you for a fringe [tassel], that ye may look upon it, and remember all the commandments of the LORD, and do them ... That ye may remember, and do all my commandments, and be holy unto your God." Num 15:38-40
By faith, she was reaching out to receive the righteousness of the Lord! She had been ceremonially unclean for twelve years because of her infirmity. All that time she was cut off from social privileges. Her uncleanness kept her from touching any hallowed thing. She never entered into the sanctuary --and no priest could touch her without becoming unclean.
Who could understand her loneliness, her sorrows and her feelings of rejection? Who could help her in her time of need? She had spent all that she had on physicians, and had suffered from many painful treatments; but she was not any better and her condition only became worse ...
The Ten Commandments are the perfect law. They showed her God's standard of holiness and defined sin. ("Sin is the transgression of the law." 1 John 3:4) She knew that she needed forgiveness and cleansing for her sins and infirmities. But, the ceremonial law with all its "touch not" ordinances, washings, and sacrifices could not forgive her or make her whole.
The ceremonial law was just a schoolmaster to lead her to Jesus. With the eyes of faith she saw Jesus, The Great High Priest, ministering in the beauty of holiness:
"For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." Heb 4:15-16 (KJV)
Her High Priest was touched by her confidence in Him.
"And Jesus said, Who touched me? When all denied, Peter and they that were with him said, Master, the multitude throng thee and press thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me? And Jesus said, Somebody hath touched me: for I perceive that virtue is gone out of me. And when the woman saw that she was not hid, she came trembling, and falling down before him, she declared unto him before all the people for what cause she had touched him, and how she was healed immediately.
And he said unto her, Daughter, be of good comfort: **thy faith hath made thee whole**; go in peace." Luke 8:45-48 (KJV)
Through faith, that woman received a miraculous healing of her body; but we must remember that we are NOT our body. Peter shows us that our body is like a tabernacle or tent. It is only a temporary dwelling place for us during our pilgrimage here on earth.
"Knowing that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle even as our Lord Jesus Christ hath shown me." 2 Peter 1:14
In the process of time, that woman of faith also put off her tabernacle because: " ... It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:" Heb 9:27.
Whether in sickness, or in health, let us be faithful and have the patience of saints. Knowing that: "Blessed is the man that endureth temptation; for when he hath been approved, he shall receive the crown of life, which (the Lord) promised to them that love him." James 1:12 (ASV)
"Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus." Rev 14:12 (KJV)
I am not a Seventh Day Adventist (and never have been), a natural Jew, or a Catholic. I am simply the least of Christ's brethren who love Him and keep His Commandments.
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