Other comments on this day's readings can be found here.
Reading 1 - Gen 13:8
"So Abram said to Lot, 'Let's not have any quarreling between
you and me, or between your herdsmen and mine, for we are brothers' " (Gen
Here is put into practice the Bible teaching of submission to
one another (Eph 5:21; 1Pe 5:5; Gal 5:20; 1Co 3:3; 2Ti 2:24; Jam 3:16; Luk
22:24-26. "It is to a man's honor to avoid strife, but every fool is quick to
quarrel" (Pro 20:3). "A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs
up anger" (Pro 15:1).
"FOR WE ARE BROTHERS": Brethren should dwell together in unity
(Psa 133), especially in the presence of the "Canaanites".
"Here was the dominant factor which must guide and influence
all relationships between Abraham and Lot. By comparison nothing else mattered.
Before this overruling bond of brotherhood all else was unimportant. They were
near of kin; they had travelled a thousand miles together, together they had
shared the hostility of a new land and the special dangers of Egypt. And were
they now to squabble over something which only the blessing of God had brought?
We be brethren! A thousand times since Abraham, and another thousand times since
God revived Abraham's Faith in these last days, men have become blind to this
truth and its deep eternal obligations. Many a wrangle about trivialities of
mundane level and many a bickering about spiritual truth of massive unimportance
would have been still-born if only this simple wholesome truth had been written
in larger capitals in home and ecclesia" (HA Whittaker, "Abraham"
Reading 2 - Psa 17:5
"My steps have held to your paths" (Psa 17:5).
"Put all your eggs in one basket: direct moment to moment help
from God. Cast out everything else, and stake all on this. Relying on God's
continuous help does not mean just sitting and waiting for it. It does not mean
just kneeling and praying for it. It means two things: studying His Word, and
obeying His commands: constant thought, constant activity -- doing our own very
best, but always realizing that if God isn't constantly directing, then it's all
a sham and a charade. What guarantee do we have that He will? And how do we know
when He does? Don't worry about that. Just do. You have nothing to lose by
trying, and nothing to gain by questioning. We are promised He will, if we are
doing our part. And let us not get the foolish and conceited idea that we are
'inspired' or 'have the Spirit' just because it seems to work. That's the
quickest way to bring everything to a grinding halt. God can turn His help and
guidance off as quickly as He can turn it on, and He is quick to deflate
presumption. This life is merely for education and training. We can never
actually accomplish anything. Anything we do for God He could do infinitely
better and more quickly Himself. He is patiently teaching us, and preparing us
to be useful in the future (if we are at last approved), and presumption will be
corrected by allowing humiliating mistakes to teach us wisdom" (GV
Reading 3 - Mat 9:18-25
"While he was saying this, a ruler came and knelt before him
and said, 'My daughter has just died. But come and put your hand on her, and she
will live' " (v 18).
A RULER: "One of the synagogue rulers" (Mar 5:22). A president
of synagogue, who had likely ignored Jesus until now. Some synagogues probably
had more than one ruler (Act 13:15). "He WAS a ruler..." (KJV). Was Jairus later
demoted through becoming a follower of Jesus?
CAME: He did not send for Jesus, as might one in his position;
instead, he came to Jesus, as a lesser comes to a greater.
JUST DIED: Note progression in the resurrections performed by
Christ: "about to die" (Luk 7:2); just died (Mat 9:18); about to be buried (Luk
7:12); and dead 4 days (Joh 11:39).
PUT YOUR HAND ON HER: There were various reasons for the
laying on of hands:
Blessing, or benediction: Gen 48:14; Mat 19:13,15;
Transfer of sin to
sacrifice: Exo 29:10,15,19; Lev 1:4,12;
Confirmation by witnesses of a
capital offense: Lev 24:14;
Appointment to office: Num 8:10; Acts 6:6; 13:3;
Outward sign of healing: Mat 9:18; Acts 9:12,17;
of imparting the Holy Spirit: Acts 8:17,19; 19:6; 1Ti 4:14; 2Ti
"Jesus got up and went with him, and so did his disciples.
Just then a woman who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years came up
behind him and touched the edge of his cloak" (vv 19,20).
SUBJECT TO BLEEDING: Ceremonially unclean, and a social
outcast (Lev 15:19-30).
TWELVE YEARS: Compare the 12 years of v 42. Whose misery was
as old as the daughter of Jairus.
AND TOUCHED THE EDGE OF HIS CLOAK: With its border of blue (cp
Num 15:37,38). To do so, she must have fallen to her knees.
"She said to herself, 'If I only touch his cloak, I will be
healed' " (v 21).
The reverse of legal restriction: 'If I touch him, he shall be
unclean too!' A man who could touch unclean, and yet remain pure himself.
HIS CLOAK: "The sun of righteousness... with healing in his
wings" (Mal 4:2), ie borders (Num 15:38 sw) of his garments.
"Jesus turned and saw her. 'Take heart, daughter,' he said,
'your faith has healed you.' And the woman was healed from that moment" (v
DAUGHTER: Mentioned in both miracles here in Mat 9.
YOUR FAITH: And not simply my power....
HAS HEALED YOU: With restored ability to bear children, as
"When Jesus entered the ruler's house and saw the flute
players and the noisy crowd, he said, 'Go away. The girl is not dead but
asleep.' But they laughed at him. After the crowd had been put outside, he went
in and took the girl by the hand, and she got up" (vv 23-25).
"Thy touch has still its ancient power;
No word from thee can fruitless fall.
Hear in this solemn evening hour,
And in thy mercy heal us all."
TOOK THE GIRL BY THE HAND: Christ touches that which is
defiled. Death! the ultimate defilement, yet held no fear for Christ, who
"tasted death" for all men.
AND SHE GOT UP: A parable of baptism: sleep of death, touch of
Master's hand, words: "Arise" and "walk"! Baptism will "raise us from the dead",
but we must "get up and walk" -- or it means... ultimately... nothing at all!