Luke 8:40-56 by Pastor Dan Walker
Being a father in today's world is a great privilege and a great responsibility. In this Father's Day message we study the story of a father who was in a tragic and seemingly hopeless situation with his daughter. Yet, we'll learn that with Jesus, nothing is impossible. Discover how you can replace fear and worry with faith in Jesus in your difficult or hopeless situations.
Duration:37 mins 56 secs

Happy Father’s Day! Let’s begin with a video on a Broader Perspective on Father’s Day. Being a father is an awesome privilege and a great responsibility. Today our message is entitled “When It Seems Hopeless.” There may be times in the life of a father where the situation seems hopeless. I believe that God wants to bring hope into your life today that will never give up.

Ephesians 3:14-15 (ESV) For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named,

When we think about what being a father means we need to look at the example of our heavenly father. As a father, we should seek to be like our father in heaven. As He treats His children, so should we raise our children.

Ephesians 6:4 (ESV) Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.

Fathers are to use discipline and instruction with their children. Not discipline and instruction of their own choosing, but that of the Lord, which is found in God’s Word. Discipline is meant to discourage wrong behavior, whereas instruction is to encourage and reward right behavior. The most essential task of a father is to see that their children become children of God by being saved. Then they seek to see their children grow in the Lord through water baptism and Spirit baptism.

Proverbs 14:26 (ESV) In the fear of the LORD one has strong confidence, and his children will have a refuge.

In order to bring up godly children, fathers need to have a strong relationship with their heavenly Father as well. In Proverbs, this is often spoken of as having the fear of the Lord. When a father is walking in the fear of the Lord, he will have a strong confidence. This is a strong confidence in the power of the Lord in his own life and in the lives’ of his children.

The promise to a father who fears the Lord is that his children will have refuge or protection in the Lord as well. The responsibility of a father for his children continues after they leave the home. A father with adult children can continue to bring blessing into his children’s lives through prayer, counsel and support. Today, we are going to learn from an example in God’s Word, what we are to do when things seem hopeless. When things seem hopeless for our children, our family or ourselves, God still has a plan. Nothing is impossible for Him.

Seek Jesus when it seems hopeless

Luke 8:40 (ESV) Now when Jesus returned, the crowd welcomed him, for they were all waiting for him.

Jesus had just returned from setting a demonized man free, as we talked about last Sunday. By this time in His ministry, the news about Jesus healing people was spreading far and wide. A huge crowd was waiting for Him as his boat landed on the shore.

Luke 8:41 (ESV) And there came a man named Jairus, who was a ruler of the synagogue. And falling at Jesus’ feet, he implored him to come to his house,

The first person to meet Jesus was a father named Jairus. Jarius was an important person, the ruler of the new synagogue in Capernaum. Jairus was in a hopeless situation, and he came to seek Jesus’ help. Jairus did not merely talk to Jesus, he knelt at Jesus’ feet.

Kneeling he begged Jesus to leave the assembled crowd and immediately come to his home, some distance away. We see both the humility and boldness of Jarius to seek Jesus and make such a request. What was Jairus’ hopeless situation that lead him to seek Jesus’ help so earnestly?

Luke 8:42a (ESV) for he had an only daughter, about twelve years of age, and she was dying.

What a heart-breaking story. As a father, Jairus had only one child. This child was a twelve year old daughter and she was so sick that she was dying. Time was of the urgency, as any delay would result in his daughter’s death. The situation was too late for any doctor’s help and so Jesus was Jairus’ only hope. Otherwise, this truly was a hopeless situation for this father.

What can we as fathers today, learn from Jairus’ example of seeking Jesus in a hopeless situation? Let’s first think about children who are still living at home, as this man’s daughter was. What kind of seemingly hopeless situations could a father encounter with his children today? Certainly, health situations similar to Jairus’ situation happen today with children. Doctors cannot cure every disease and we need to seek Jesus’ help.

The salvation of your children is something that you should be seeking God’s help with on a daily basis. Even when they have made a decision for the Lord, we need to daily seek that they will continue to believe and walk with the Lord. Children today are tempted with various addictions that can destroy their lives. We must do battle for them by seeking God in prayer for their protection from the devil’s schemes. A father is supposed to be a warrior for God, fighting battles to keep his children safe and secure in the Lord’s care. Seek Jesus when it seems hopeless.

Touch Jesus when it seems hopeless

Luke 8:42b-43 (ESV) As Jesus went, the people pressed around him. And there was a woman who had had a discharge of blood for twelve years, and though she had spent all her living on physicians, she could not be healed by anyone.

Jesus began walking toward Jarius’ home, but the crowd continued to press around Him. In that crowd was a woman who had a long-term bleeding condition. She had spent all her money on doctors, but none of them could cure her condition. This woman was in another hopeless situation, there was nothing more that she could do on her own. Not only was the condition painful, but it caused her to be unclean. Being unclean meant that she could not be out in public and was not supposed to touch anyone else or they would be unclean. Yet, here she was, in the middle of a crowd, trying to get close to Jesus.

Luke 8:44-45a (ESV) She came up behind him and touched the fringe of his garment, and immediately her discharge of blood ceased. And Jesus said, “Who was it that touched me?”

So, this sickly, weak woman, pressed through this enormous crowd until she got close to Jesus. Not only was this physically difficult, undoubtedly many people were upset with her. She was unclean and was not supposed to be in that crowd. When she was close, she reached out and touched a tassel at the bottom of Jesus robe. As she touched the robe, she felt that the flow of blood had stopped. Jesus then asked the question, Who touched me?”

Luke 8:45b-46 (ESV) When all denied it, Peter said, “Master, the crowds surround you and are pressing in on you!” But Jesus said, “Someone touched me, for I perceive that power has gone out from me.”

Jesus was being touched by dozens of people in the crowd, so His question made no sense to Peter. Jesus explained that the touch He was talking about was a unique touch. A touch unlike any other, for at that touch the power of the Holy Spirit had been released. That power of the Holy Spirit had instantly healed the woman of this hopeless disease instantly.

Luke 8:47-48 (ESV) And when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling, and falling down before him declared in the presence of all the people why she had touched him, and how she had been immediately healed. And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace.”

The woman heard Jesus’ question and came forward. She gave a God story in front of the crowd, telling how she had been healed. Jesus called the woman, daughter, indicating that she was a child of God. He said that it was her faith that had made her well. She reached out in faith, believing that if she could touch Jesus’ robe, she would be healed and she was.

The word in the Greek language for “made you well” is sozo which literally means saved. So, I believe that this woman was both healed by faith and saved by faith. She had not been in peace before, but now she was in the Lord’ peace. Touch Jesus when it seems hopeless.

Let’s apply the principles we’ve learned in this point to the lives of fathers. It’s one thing to pray to the Lord in hopeless situations. It’s quite another to reach out to touch Jesus in faith. A prayer that reaches out to touch Jesus in faith is a prayer that believes that God will answer the prayer. That is the kind of bold and courageous faith that fathers need for their own lives.

It is sad to read of stories of fathers who have shipwrecked their lives and faith, not only for the destruction in their own lives, but for the consequences for their children. A father must keep his relationship with the Lord as his first priority in order to lead his children to do the same. A father who is reaching out to touch Jesus with faith will raise up children who do the same. And the opposite is true as well. A father who does not seek God will not be able to raise children who seek God. It is not enough as a father to bring your children to church, as good as that may be. You must be an example to your children of a Christ follower in all of your life. Touch Jesus when it seems hopeless.

Believe Jesus when it seems hopeless

Luke 8:49-50 (ESV) While he was still speaking, someone from the ruler’s house came and said, “Your daughter is dead; do not trouble the Teacher any more.” But Jesus on hearing this answered him, “Do not fear; only believe, and she will be well.”

Let’s think for a minute about what was going on here. Jairus was probably frantic, desperately waiting for Jesus to come to his house to heal his dying daughter. However, Jesus did not seem to be in any hurry at all. He was spending time talking to the woman with the issue of blood who had been healed. Now, the worst of news came. Because of Jesus’ delay, his daughter had died.

The messenger told him to give up, it was hopeless, now that she had passed away. But Jesus turning to Jairus, told him, do not fear, only believe and she will be well. You see fear and faith cannot coexist. Fear destroys faith, but faith destroys fear. Jesus challenged Jairus to believe and his daughter, although dead, would be healed.

Luke 8:51-52 (ESV) And when he came to the house, he allowed no one to enter with him, except Peter and John and James, and the father and mother of the child. And all were weeping and mourning for her, but he said, “Do not weep, for she is not dead but sleeping.”

Jesus removed from the house all those who had no faith for the girl to be resurrected. His closest disciples were with Him to learn, along with Jairus and his wife. Jesus spoke to the mourners and told them that the girl was not dead but sleeping. Jesus did not mean that the girl was not physically dead, but that she would be brought back, as though waking from sleeping.

Luke 8:53-55 (ESV) And they laughed at him, knowing that she was dead. But taking her by the hand he called, saying, “Child, arise.” And her spirit returned, and she got up at once. And he directed that something should be given her to eat.

Those with no faith laughed at Jesus and those who had faith. For them, death was final and there was no hope. But those with faith knew that nothing was hopeless with Jesus. Jesus commanded the girl to arise. Her spirit, which had left her on death, returned and she came back to life and got up. Jesus instructed that she be given something to eat to strengthen her after her illness. Jairus had believed Jesus when it seemed hopeless and received a miracle.

Let’s now apply these principles for fathers whose children have left the home and perhaps had grandchildren. There may be times when you’re tempted to fear regarding the direction that your children or grandchildren are taking in life. You can no longer speak into their lives on a daily basis. Yet, we must learn to believe and not fear. Your responsibility for your children and grandchildren as a father is still there.

Your daily prayers for those children are essential for their protection, both physically and spiritually. Those who have wandered away from God can be brought back through faithful prayers. Those are walking with God can be strengthened. As you pray, God will give you words and ways to speak faith and God’s truth into their lives. Do not fear, believe Jesus when it seems hopeless.

 On this Fathers’ Day, God wants each father listening to know that your heavenly father is with you. Even though there will always be things in your life that seem hopeless from a natural viewpoint, with Jesus nothing is hopeless. Seek Jesus daily in prayer, even when the situation seems hopeless. Reach out to touch Jesus in faith when you can’t see a way through. Believe that all things are possible with Jesus even though it’s impossible for you. Replace fear, worry and anxiety with faith. God wants to give you a faith that can move mountains and bring the dead back to life. Be encouraged this Father’s day, God is with you.