“‘If a woman has a discharge of blood for many days, other than at the time of her customary impurity, or if it runs beyond her usual time of impurity, all the days of her unclean discharge shall be as the days of her customary impurity. She shall be unclean. Every bed on which she lies all the days of her discharge shall be to her as the bed of her impurity; and whatever she sits on shall be unclean, as the uncleanness of her impurity.”
Leviticus 15:25-26 NKJV
“Now a woman, having a flow of blood for twelve years, who had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any, came from behind and touched the border of His garment. And immediately her flow of blood stopped. And Jesus said, “Who touched Me?” When all denied it, Peter and those with him said, “Master, the multitudes throng and press You, and You say, ‘Who touched Me?’ ” But Jesus said, “Somebody touched Me, for I perceived power going out from Me.” Now when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling; and falling down before Him, she declared to Him in the presence of all the people the reason she had touched Him and how she was healed immediately. And He said to her, “Daughter, be of good cheer; your faith has made you well. Go in peace.””
Luke 8:43-48 NKJV
Having a chronic medical issue is a constant struggle, as one must go through each day dealing not only with each days issues, but also being dragged down by the health problem. I am still working my way through Leviticus. Usually, I skim through this book, and spend little time on the text. This time, however, God has seen fit to focus my mind, and I have found my heart rent each day.
When I got to chapter 15, I thought of the woman with the twelve year issue of blood. Years ago I had a case of presacral edema, or fluid around my tailbone. The skin back there had become extremely macerated and I drained fluid constantly. I found myself leaving wet spots where ever I sat, and I was careful to wear dark pants all the time in hope of hiding my condition. The experience was painful and embarrassing.
When I consider the woman with the flow of blood, I can imagine her constant humiliation, her discomfort and all the adjustments she had to make just to get through each day. I can imagine her mornings, awakening to a new day filled with dread. Through my own experiences, I have deep empathy.
In the passage in Leviticus, she is considered unclean. No one could touch her, for to do so would make them unclean. I can imagine that she walked about in crowded isolation, with others, but totally alone. in this pandemic we are seeing many in just such a situation, such as the elderly, those with underlying conditions, and many others who are forced in solitude for the sake of safety.
In her life in the city, she must have heard about Jesus. I suspect that she had some knowledge of the Holy Scriptures as well. In her need, God gave her faith. I can imagine her seeing Jesus a far off, and walking as fast as her sick, anemic body would carry her, as she tracked Him down.
She was separated by many in the crowd, pushing her back from the One who could bring the healing she needed. I can almost see her lunge, with every bit of courage and all the strength that she could muster, just to get a glancing touch of the hem of Jesus’ garment.
I think of Jesus, all knowing, and all powerful. He knew of the woman from the foundation of creation, of that moment when finger would touch cloth. When he turned to see who had touched him, I doubt that He looked around. I suspect that Jesus locked onto the eyes of the woman, rising from the ground, instantly, with a steady, loving gaze.
Brothers and sisters, I have learned from the book of Levitcus, that God is for us. He has made provision for us in every aspect of our lives. He has illustrated His love and concern for us in the words of the Bible. He has made promises to His people, from the children of Israel, to those of us who believe today. He loves us and desires the best for us.
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.”
Jeremiah 29:11-13 NKJV
Do not fear, my people. Know today that you have the God of Creation for you, who loved you so much, that He left the glory of Heaven to take on human flesh, lived a sinless life, and died on the cross for your sins. He was buried and rose again.
I remember when I was lost in sin. It was like I was like being chronically ill, with no solution in sight. I was caught up in behaviors, and habits that I could not stop. Strongholds abounded.
Many of the people we encounter in our lives are living with secrets, and hidden pains, that drag them down. All too many of them have not heard the Gospel, and do not know of Jesus, who came as the Great Physician to make them whole.
Let us be bold and tell of that great healing. Let us tell them, that they track down this Jesus, only to realize that He has been tracking after them, all along. We are ambassadors of the Glorious God, and proof of His work of salvation in this world.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.”
Ephesians 2:8-10 NKJV
For those of you who are like the woman with the flow of blood. You feel caught up in sin that you cannot stop. Or perhaps you feel an emptiness, or depression that has drained you of your vitality and you don’t know how you are going to make it.
There is healing in forgiveness. We humans have a sin problem. We, by our nature fall short of the glory of God. Jesus came, that our sin debt be paid, that we be reconciled with God.
As God to open your heart today, to let you see that He is real, and get a glimpse of His great love.
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