Mark 5: “A large crowd was following Him and pressing in on Him. A woman who had a hemorrhage for twelve years, and had endured much at the hands of many physicians, and had spent all that she had and was not helped at all, but rather had grown worse, after hearing about Jesus, came up in the crowd behind Him and touched His cloak. For she thought, "If I just touch His garments, I will get well." Immediately the flow of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of her affliction. Immediately Jesus, perceiving in Himself that the power proceeding from Him had gone forth, turned around in the crowd and said, "Who touched My garments?" And His disciples said to Him, "You see the crowd pressing in on You, and You say, 'Who touched Me?'" And He looked around to see the woman who had done this. But the woman, fearing and trembling, aware of what had happened to her, came and fell down before Him and told Him the whole truth. And He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace and be freed from your suffering." We ask, “What does this story have to do with freedom?” It was not enough that the woman believed that merely touching one of Jesus' garments would heal her. She was called by Jesus to confess what had happened, so that her confession of faith would also be a witness for others. Jesus honors her faith and courage to come forward and find salvation: not just for her illness, but also for her soul. Complete healing includes the peace of mind and spirit that accompanies physical healing. Jesus said, "Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering." “Be Freed!!” Freedom! The healing of her body, mind, soul and spirit is her being able to stand in the freedom of eternal life through faith in Christ. This freedom is not the freedom to stomp and trample upon those who are less fortunate than we and build our personal wealth upon the backs of those that we have the power to manipulate and enslave. That is economic Darwinism and is neither Christian nor Democratic. In a Republic, economics should be one of the tools that exist to serve democratic ideals, and not have those ideals manipulated to serve the pursuit of individual wealth and personal greed. True freedom is, in part, the Christian responsibility to care for the less fortunate; the handicapped, orphans, the widowed and other unfortunates. This caring for others makes it possible for everyone to walk in freedom, liberty, and the equality of opportunity that implies equal justice for all. Jesus gives us THE reason to have true faith and hope, so in the knowledge of the resurrection; in the faith that we have in our Savior, let us appreciate true freedom! Let freedom ring! Let there be liberty and justice for all! Let us enjoy the pursuit of happiness, while remembering those that are less fortunate, those who are tired and poor; those who have yet to breathe the pure air of freedom and equality. Galatians 5:1 reads: “It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore, keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.”  Let freedom ring!!

Pastor Jan