Revive Our Hearts Podcast

His Healing Touch, Part 4

Leslie Basham: Have you exhausted all your resources trying to solve your problem? It's Thursday, March 7; and you're listening to Revive Our Hearts with Nancy DeMoss.

When you wake up in the morning, where do you turn for your source of power? We won't experience true freedom and direction until we rely on God to be our source. Today we'll hear about a woman who experienced the power of God through His Son, Jesus Christ. Let's join Nancy.

Nancy Leigh DeMoss: "The Lord had me release a prisoner I've held captive for over 16 years," a woman wrote and said to me. "Now God can restore the years that the locusts have eaten."

We've been looking over the last several sessions at a woman who found what it was to get to Jesus and how He could set her free from years of chronic illness, years of bondage that had affected her in every area of her life. If you're just joining us, we've been looking in Mark 5. And we're getting to know this woman who is not given a name. We're just told she was a certain woman in the crowd.

Aren't you glad that Jesus knows and cares about a certain nameless woman not only in that crowd; but in the crowd where you live, in the crowd where you work and in the crowd where you go to church? He had compassion on her and met her need. When she got to Him, she found that the issue that she had had for these twelve years was able to be addressed. She had been to many physicians. She had suffered many things at their hands. She had spent all that she had. She was not better; rather, she was worse.

But when she heard about Jesus, Mark 5 tells us that she came up behind Him--I think not wanting to be noticed, not wanting to have anybody point her out. Remember that this is a woman who for twelve years had been living in isolation because, according to the levitical law, she was contaminated. Nobody could touch her. Nobody could touch anything that she touched. For all these years, she'd been afraid to be in a crowd. She had been rejected by crowds.

But now she gets the courage when she hears that Jesus is in the area to come up behind Him--maybe (she was) afraid to actually face Him. But she says to herself, "If I can just touch His garment I know that I would be made well." That is the word for whole. "I know that I would be set free from this bondage that I've been in all these years."

We saw in our last session that when she touched Jesus, immediately the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of the affliction. She knew that she had been healed. How did she know? I don't know, but faith comes from God. God puts faith in our hearts. And she knew that she was set free from that thing that she had struggled with for all of those years.

Verse 30 tells us that Jesus, "Immediately knowing in Himself that power had gone out of Him, turned around in the crowd and said, 'Who touched my clothes?'" Jesus knew that power had gone out of Him. This doesn't mean that He had any less power after helping this woman than He did before. But He knew that the power to heal this woman was not actually in her touch. And it was not anything mystical about His garments.

It was the power of God within Him because Jesus was God. Jesus is God. What had healed this woman was the power of God. In fact, it was the same power that spoke the Word and created this universe. All the worlds came into being by His power.

I was out walking this morning just as the sun was beginning to come up, enjoying and appreciating the beauty of God's creation. As I contemplated the power of God in creating this world, my little issues didn't all seem so major anymore. When I get to know God in the context of His great power--the power of God was dispensed by Jesus according to His sovereign will, according to what He wanted to do.

This woman really had very little to do with her own healing. She exercised faith. She reached out. Out of her desperation, she believed that He could heal her. But she could not heal herself. She had an incurable illness. The issues of our hearts are incurable. We cannot fix them ourselves. Only Jesus and His power can do that. It's a supernatural impartation of His power that is what makes the difference in our lives. That's how we experience eternal life and cleansing and forgiveness and wholeness and healing for the issues of our hearts. It was not her touch but His power that healed her.

Let me just say as an insert here that this woman experienced immediate physical healing. There are times when God does not choose in His sovereignty to dispense physical healing. I think of the apostle Paul, who had some sort of physical ailment. It's not that he didn't want to be healed. It's something that was a great burden to him. But three times 2 Corinthians tells us that he cried out to the Lord, "Please heal me of this affliction!" God in that case chose not to heal the apostle Paul. But God said, "I'll give you what you really need, which is My grace to walk through this affliction."

I had a woman say to me in one of the breaks earlier, "I've had two brain tumors. I would have to look back on those events--those times in my life--and say they were actually a blessing." She was saying, in a sense, "I wouldn't ask God to take it away now that I've experienced the relationship with Him and His grace that has come to me as a result of having walked through those physical difficulties."

The Lord knows exactly what it is that you and I really need. Sometimes what we think we need is for the pressure to be off, but God may know that what we really need is to experience His grace and His wholeness in our lives in the midst of the problem or the difficulty.

Now Jesus says, "Who touched me? Who touched my clothes?" The disciples said to Him in verse 31, "You see the multitude thronging you and you say, 'Who touched me?' I mean, everybody is touching you. There are people all around touching you."

But isn't it interesting that Jesus knew how to distinguish between the many people in that crowd who were just part of the religious crowd pressing around Him and the one person who was coming in faith, expecting Him to do something about her issue? I think of all the people who come to church--your church and mine--on Sunday morning. They're pressing in. They're doing their religious thing. But Jesus knows that there's someone in that crowd who is serious about getting the issues of their heart dealt with. That's why Jesus singles out this woman.

Now when Jesus says, "Who touched My clothes?" it's obvious that He is not asking out of ignorance. He was God. He knew who had touched His clothes. So why is He asking this perhaps very timid, scared woman to identify herself? Well, there could be a number of reasons. I think one obvious reason is that He knew it was important for this woman to make a public confession of what had been a very private matter in her life.

The Word of God says that we must not only believe in our hearts that Jesus is the Son of God and that He is our means of salvation, but we must also confess it with our mouths. Jesus said, "If you're ashamed of Me, ashamed to confess Me publicly, I will be ashamed of you." This woman needed to say publicly what it was that God had done for her. She needed an opportunity to express her faith. Jesus wasn't going to let this woman hide. Her faith had to be confessed openly.

Then I think that Jesus wanted a personal relationship with this woman. He didn't want her to just pass by Him in the night and just be another statistic of just one more person He had healed. I think He was saying, "I healed you for a relationship. I'm not going to let you just go, and go on with your life as it was. I want to know you. And I want you to know Me."

Then I think there's something else important that probably happened when Jesus made this woman come forward and tell the truth about what had happened. After twelve years of living with this kind of illness and this kind of rejection and isolation, chances are that there were some old tapes playing in this woman's mind. She could have been healed, but gone home and continued to hear those tapes playing that said, "Unclean! Unclean!"

I think Jesus knew that by her coming forward and telling her story that He was going to push the stop button on that recorder and put in a new tape that said, "You're clean! You're clean!" She had to now begin the process of thinking a new way about who she was.

It reminds us of that passage in 1 Corinthians 6 where the apostle Paul lists all sorts of sins--fornicators, idolaters, adulterers, homosexuals, thieves. He says, "None of these will inherit the kingdom of God, and such were some of you." But he says, "That's not who you are any longer. You were washed. You were sanctified. You were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus. You're a new person."

Verse 32 tells us that as He was looking for this woman, Jesus looked around. That word means He was looking penetratingly. He was determined to identify this woman and have her identify herself. Verse 33 says, "The woman, fearing and trembling, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell down before Him and told Him the whole truth."

Luke's Gospel says it this way: "She declared to Him in the presence of all the people the reason she had touched Him and how she was healed immediately."

You know, you may have experienced deliverance from bitterness, from some particular sin issue in your life; but you're not really free until you can confess it before the Lord and in the presence of others. Until you can say, "This is my testimony. Here is where I was. Here is what was the issue in my life. Here is what God has done for me."

Those past failures that we tend to want to hide and cover and not have anybody know about--those actually can become a very important part of our life message.

Leslie Basham: That's Nancy DeMoss giving us important perspective. Nancy will be right back, but first we want to let you know about a book that serves as an example of the type of life message that Nancy was just talking about. Glenda Revell was unwanted at birth, born to an alcoholic mother and abused as a child. But God used her struggles to draw her to Himself. Glenda's Story is an inspiring account of the way God can change a life after years of pain. We have the book available in our resource center for a suggested donation of $8.

To order, you can call 1-800-569-5959. You can also visit our Web site, ReviveOurHearts.com. If you have a testimony you're eager to share, then write and tell us about it. We'd love to hear what God has done for you.

Well, are you living like the Christian woman God has called you to be? Yes? No? Maybe? We'll help you clarify your answer on tomorrow's broadcast. Hope you'll join us then. Now again here is Nancy.

Nancy DeMoss: What has Jesus done for you? Has He saved you from sin? Has He saved you from yourself? Has He delivered you from sinful habits and bondages? Think back about what Jesus has done for you over the course of your knowing Him. Then let me ask you this question: Are you still hiding in the crowd or are you willing to come forward publicly to testify and say, "I praise God! This is what He has done for me!"

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