Friday, February 13, 2009

The Woman with the issue of Blood

For the List of "Women of the Bible", click Blog Archive, 2008 December.
Glossary is given at the end of the Chapter for * marked words.

Read Scripture Reference: Luke 8:43-48; Mark 5:25-34; Matt 9:20-22.
25 Questions & Answers

#1. Fill up the blanks. Mark 5:25-26.
And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for _____ years. 26She had suffered a great deal under the care of many _________ and had _______all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew _______.

#1. And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. 26She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse.

#2. True or False. The woman subject to bleeding in the story is healed spiritually and physically.

#2. A woman who had been bleeding for 12 years could not be healed by physicians. We know nothing else about this woman's whereabouts. The precise nature of her problem is not known. For long 12 years she endured a slow hemorrhage. She suffered a great deal and could not be healed even with the care of many doctors and had spent all she had. Probably her existence would have been wretched because she was shunned by the people since anyone having contact with her was made ceremonially unclean. But Jesus healed her both spiritually(Go in peace) and physically(be freed from your suffering) as a result of her simple act of faith.

#3.True or False. Jesus wanted the Woman and the crowd to know that his garments had not caused her healing, but the strength of her faith.

#3. True. Mark 5:34 He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering."

#4. What is faith?

#4. The terms "faith" and "believe" occur almost 500 times in the NT.It is in Paul's letters that the meaning of faith is most clearly and fully explained. Faith is trust in the person of Jesus, the truth of his teaching, and the redemptive work he accomplished at Calvary. Unbelief, or lack of faith in Christian Gospel, appears everywhere in the NT as the supreme evil. Only faith can save a person who remain in sin and eternally lost.

See what the NT talks about faith.
(1) Rom 10:17 Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ.
(2) Heb 11:1 Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.
(3) Heb 12:2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith,

#5. Over and over again we read that faith was the key that led to healing. Give 3 examples about faith and healing in the Scripture.

#5. (1) He healed 2 blind men. Matt 9:29 Then he touched their eyes and said, "According to your faith will it be done to you".
(2) Acts 3:1616By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus' name and the faith that comes through him that has given this complete healing to him, as you can all see.
(3) Mark 2:5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, "Son, your sins are forgiven.

#6. True or False. Jesus said, in the absence of faith, healing may not take place.

#6. True. (1)Mark 6:5-6 He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them. 6And he was amazed at their lack of faith.
(2) Luke 9:40-41 I begged your disciples to drive it out, but they could not."
41"O unbelieving and perverse generation," Jesus replied, "how long shall I stay with you and put up with you? Bring your son here."

#7. Scripture also reports healing did not take place even with faith. Infirmities may teach us valuable lessons about our faith. Provide 3 examples.

#7. (1)Paul, a tremendous man of faith and a mighty minister in the early church said about his own infirmity in 2 Cor 12:7-9. To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. 8Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.
(2) Psalm 119:71 It was good for me to be afflicted, so that I might learn your decrees.
(3) Romans 5:3 Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance.

So, not all are healed because it is God's ultimate decision to heal or not to heal. He has authority over all disease and sickness. He can choose to heal whomever he chooses, whenever he chooses. We don't always know all of the answers as to why.

#8. Did Jesus confine his miracles to believers only?

#8. Jesus did not confine his miracles to believers only. At times he healed people who did not know who he was(John 9:35-36). Obviously, the dead bodies Jesus raised did not have faith. It was a manifestation of Jesus' power over death.
Jesus did not bless the faithless. It is essential to trust Jesus.

#9. How did she hear about Jesus' healing power (Mk 5:27)?

#9. (1) She was there when Jesus returned from healing the demoniacs of the Gerasenes(vs 21-25).
(2)She must have heard that Jairus, an official at the Synagogue, had beseeched Jesus to heal his daughter (vs 23).
(3) She had heard "about Jesus" from the crowd(vs 27).
(4) The Galilee area had previously seen Jesus heal a paralytic (Mk 2), a man with a shriveled hand (Mk 3), diseases and evil spirits of a large crowd(Mk 3), raise a centurion's servant from the dead (Lk 7), raise a widow's son from the dead (Lk 7:14-15).
(5) Others had been healed by Jesus in Galilee through touching him (Lk 6:19).

#10. When she heard about Jesus (Mark 5:27), What did she plan to do?

#10.She believed in Jesus. Her faith destroyed her unbelief and gave her courage to touch him. Faith demanded action to be released. So she must have forced the crowd to give her way to reach behind Jesus. Her determination to establish a point of contact to release her faith helped her to receive the healing from Jesus. Thus she got her miraculous healing.

#11. This time she believed that this Faith Healer Jesus could heal her "No Charge" unlike the other Doctors. She said over and over, "If I just touch His clothes, I'll be healed" (Mk 5:28). What were the taboos(= socially or culturally prohibited) and trends(=prevailing tendencies) she must be willing to break to achieve the healing?

#11. (1) As an unclean woman she was unwelcome in society,ie socially isolated because everything and everyone she touched became ceremonially unclean
(Lev 15:19-30).
(2) Sexual relations would have been unclean (Deu 24:1).
(3) Worship in the synagogue would have been barred to her since she could not make atonement for her blood flow (Lev 15:28-30).
(4) As an unclean woman if she touched Jesus, under normal circumstances, she would make him ceremonially unclean.
(5) As a woman she was restricted from touching a man in public.

#12. If this Woman was in USA and was sick and tired of being sick and tired of bleeding for 12 years, What would have had happened?

#12. She would have been dropped by her insurance company and would have been fired from the job for taking too many sick days, by the time she met up with Jesus. After her miraculous healing, if she had applied for health insurance, she probably would have been turned down flat for risky pre-existing medical conditions. But it's possible that she might have qualified for partial coverage, meaning everything covered except the uterus.

#13. True or False. The Bible directs that the loss of blood leads to loss of vitality and that a draining away of the blood leads to death.

#13. The word Blood occurs over 400 times in the Bible and is especially frequent in Leviticus, Ezekiel, and Hebrews. For the most part Bible references are directed toward the practical observation that loss of blood leads to loss of vitality and that a draining away of the blood leads to death. Genesis 9:5 says (literally), "Your blood, belonging to your lives, I will seek . . . from the hand of man . . . I will seek the life of man." In this verse "seeking your blood" is parallel with "seeking the life," and both mean exacting the death penalty. When blood is shed, life is terminated, and the Lord seeks requital for the shedding of blood by demanding the life of the murderer (Gen 9:5; cf. 37:26; 2 Sam 1:16; Pss 30:9; 58:10). Blood is the life of the flesh (Gen 9:4; Lev 17:11); The flesh and blood in their proper union constitute a living creature, (beast or man), but when they are separated death takes place.

#14. Does Bible record menstruation any where?

#14. Menstruation recorded in Scripture as given below.
Laws relating to menstruation: Lev. 15:19-30; 20:18; 2 Sam11:4; Ezek. 18:6.
Cessation of menstruation in old age: Gen. 18:11.
Immunities of women during menstruation: Gen. 31:35. Rachel's words here are the only mention in Scripture of a typical monthly menstrual cycle.
About Sanitary pads: Isa. 30:22.
Figurative use of menstruation: Isa. 30:22; Lam. 1:17; Ezek. 36:17.

#15. What does Leviticus say about uncleanness for regular and irregular period?

#15. Levit 15:19 " 'When a woman has her regular flow of blood, the impurity of her monthly period will last seven days, and anyone who touches her will be unclean till evening.

Levit 15:25-27 " 'When a woman has a discharge of blood for many days at a time other than her monthly period or has a discharge that continues beyond her period, she will be unclean as long as she has the discharge, just as in the days of her period. 26 Any bed she lies on while her discharge continues will be unclean, as is her bed during her monthly period, and anything she sits on will be unclean, as during her period. 27 Whoever touches them will be unclean; he must wash his clothes and bathe with water, and he will be unclean till evening.

#16. How come nobody from the crowd had prevented this unclean woman from joining in with the crowd?

#16. Apparently, she or her disease was not well known to the people of the crowd. In this society, even during a regular period, women were supposed to avoid all tactile contact with men, including husbands, even to the point of avoiding a chair on which the husband was likely to sit, fearing ritual uncleanness might be transferred.

#17. Why did she touch the hem of Jesus' garment?

#17. May have several reasons, but 4 are given below.
(1) A show of her faith in Jesus and his power to heal.
(2) She knew that the hem contained the fringe(tassel) known as zizit*. This was the holiest of the garb* worn by a Jew.
(3) It would have been difficult to fight the throng(crowd) standing up and reaching to Jesus.
(4) She was risking all sorts of horrible censure if it was discovered she dared to touch Jesus as well as the men in the crowd, being in a chronic unclean condition.

#18. What is the importance of tassels on Garments?

#18. See Numbers 15:37-40, Deu 22:12. It represented the 613 laws of God. The children of Israel were to wear blue cords upon the fringe of their garments- a reminder to "do all my commandments and be holy".
The LORD said to Moses, 38 "Speak to the Israelites and say to them: 'Throughout the generations to come you are to make tassels on the corners of your garments, with a blue cord on each tassel. 39 You will have these tassels to look at and so you will remember all the commands of the LORD, that you may obey them and not prostitute yourselves by going after the lusts of your own hearts and eyes. 40 Then you will remember to obey all my commands and will be consecrated to your God. 41 I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt to be your God. I am the LORD your God.' "

Deut 28 outlines the consequences(blessings and curses) of obedience and disobedience to the commandments.

Exod 28:33 Make pomegranates of blue, purple and scarlet yarn around the hem of the robe, with gold bells between them. Here the Lord is instructing Moses on the making
of the High Priest's garments.

She heard about Jesus, a new rabbi with miraculous power in town. So she figured out even the colors of the hem of his robe. So she believed Jesus is the true High Priest of Israel with healing power.

#19. Jesus blocked her escape and silence the crowd with a curious question, "Who touched me? What happened then?

#19. She recognized that she was in the presence of God. Eventually the woman, seeing that she could not go unnoticed, came trembling and fell at his feet. In the presence of all the people, she told why she had touched him and how she had been instantly healed (Lk 8:47). When he made her publicly confess her healing, her private affliction became a matter of public record. She was afraid the rabbi would censure her because she had broken several laws. But instead of scolding and shaming her, Jesus praised her. He had not addressed her as woman or sinner, but called her daughter. He restored her social standing. She was no longer alone, but part of his family by virtue of her faith.

#20.Is there any other confession of faith in the Bible like this woman's confession?

#20. (1) God made Adam and Eve confess the truth so that they could be saved (Gen3).
(2). The Philippian jailer and his household believed in Jesus and were saved (Act 16:31-32).

#21. Many people touched him on that day. Jesus did not heal all who touched him in the crowd. How Jesus perceived her secret touch and he knew the power left him to the faith destination like a power cable?

#21. Jesus knew "in his spirit" (Mk 2:8) both her need and her touch.
Luke says Jesus noticed her, Mark says He saw her.

#22. There are many healing promises in the Scripture. Provide 4 examples?

#22. (1) Exod 15:26 He said, "If you listen carefully to the voice of the LORD your God and do what is right in his eyes, if you pay attention to his commands and keep all his decrees, I will not bring on you any of the diseases I brought on the Egyptians, for I am the LORD, who heals you."
(2)Psalm 30:2 O LORD my God, I called to you for help and you healed me.
(3)Psalm 103:1-4 1 Praise the LORD, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name. 2 Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits- 3 who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, 4 who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion,
(4)Rev 21:3-4 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away."

(I am not sure whether all healing takes place here in earth or in heaven? If you have experienced and are sure of the answer, please email the publisher).

#23. How many kinds of uncleanness mentioned in the Bible?

#23. Two kinds of uncleanness: Moral and ceremonial. Forms of ceremonial uncleanness: (1) Many foods regarded as unclean in the OT. (2) Other forms of ceremonial uncleanness: contact with the dead (Lev 11:24-40; 17:15; Nu 19:16-22), leprosy (Lev 13; 14; Nu 5:2), sexual discharge (Lev 15:16-33),
childbirth (Lev 12:6-8).
In Christianity uncleanness has become moral, not ceremonial.

#24. Jesus condemned the cumbersome systems of defilement developed by the Scribes and Pharisees. So the Council's Letter to Gentile Believers placed only 'four' restrictions on the new believers, what are they(Acts 15:28-29)?

#24. It seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us not to burden you with anything beyond the following requirements: 29You are to abstain
(1) from food sacrificed to idols,
(2) from blood,
(3) from the meat of strangled animals, and
(4) from sexual immorality.
Thus, in the New Testament era, uncleanness has become moral, not ceremonial.

#25. When you evaluate this story, do you believe the doctors' and drug companies' charges must be tied up with healing, such as no cure no charge?

#25. The woman in this story became destitute* because doctors sucked up all her money with out healing her. Doctors were more interested in their financial gain than in her cure. Doctors' billing policy then was same as today- healed or not, charge any way, meaning work with out warranty. She went to see the Doctors for one thing, her physical bleeding. But she end up having two things, her bleeding grew worse and made her a destitute by systematically bleeding her wealth too.

A British news is given below. If you think it is the way to go, talk to your Legislative Reps and Senators and make sure they change the Law.

July 26, 2007
No Cure, No Charge: How to make a drug company bankrupt.

Now here’s an interesting idea that is being tested in the UK. A drug company has agreed to charge the country’s National Health Service for its multiple myeloma drug Velcade (bortezomib) only if it cures the patient.

It will refund the full cost of the drug to every patient who doesn’t respond to the drug, provided it is prescribed according to the company’s specifications. Doctors should use the drug only if other drugs have failed, and the patient is not suitable for bone marrow transplantation.

A correspondent for the British Medical Journal commented: “The announcement was a sobering reminder that most medicines do not work in all patients.”

We think it’s a great scheme. If it was adopted globally, drug companies would be bankrupt by Christmas.

(Source: British Medical Journal, 2007; 335: 122-3).

If you want to know about the problems of drugs, you need to research on few drugs. For example, study the "fact sheet" of a cholesterol lowering drug "Lipitor" and other 10 or 20 top selling drugs. Study the benefits and risks/side effects, total worldwide sales of Lipitor, how many litigations against the company, are the government, FDA, and the congress working for the interest of the people or the lobyists, is it acceptable to damage other organs and systems of the body when taking medication to lower the cholesterol. Share your expectations with proper authorities.


1)beseech = beg somebody to do something

2)destitute = desperately poor due to lack of money, resources, or possessions;

3)garb = A distinctive style or form of dress (the garb of a Rabbi).

4)Issue = This is a KJV term referring to (a) offspring (Genesis 48:6; Isaiah 22:24; Matthew 22:25; compare 2 Kings 20:18; Isaiah 39:7)
(b)to a bodily discharge.
The KJV applied issue to male pathological discharges such as that associated with gonorrhea (Leviticus 15:2-15), to normal menstruation (Leviticus 15:19-24), and to female pathological discharges (Leviticus 15:25-30; Matthew 9:20).
Normal discharges resulted in ritual uncleanness for one day which was removed by simple washing.
Pathological discharges resulted in uncleanness until seven days after the return to full health and required an atoning sacrifice. In Ezekiel 23:20 the seminal emission of stallions is one element in a graphic depiction of Judah's idolatry.

5)zizit = the fringes or tassels worn by orthodox Jewish men, formerly on the corners of the outer garment, now on the four corners of the tallit, Deut. 22:12.


Mat 9:20-22

20Just then a woman who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak. 21She said to herself, "If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed."
22Jesus turned and saw her. "Take heart, daughter," he said, "your faith has healed you." And the woman was healed from that moment.

Mk 5:25-34
A large crowd followed and pressed around him. 25And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. 26She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. 27When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, 28because she thought, "If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed." 29Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering.
30At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, "Who touched my clothes?"
31"You see the people crowding against you," his disciples answered, "and yet you can ask, 'Who touched me?' "
32But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. 33Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. 34He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering."

Lk 8:43-48
As Jesus was on his way, the crowds almost crushed him. 43And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years, but no one could heal her. 44She came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak, and immediately her bleeding stopped.
45"Who touched me?" Jesus asked.
When they all denied it, Peter said, "Master, the people are crowding and pressing against you."
46But Jesus said, "Someone touched me; I know that power has gone out from me."
47Then the woman, seeing that she could not go unnoticed, came trembling and fell at his feet. In the presence of all the people, she told why she had touched him and how she had been instantly healed. 48Then he said to her, "Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace."

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