Luke 8:46

ESV But Jesus said, “Someone touched me, for I perceive that power has gone out from me.”
NIV But Jesus said, 'Someone touched me; I know that power has gone out from me.'
NASB But Jesus said, 'Someone did touch Me, for I was aware that power had left Me.'
CSB "Someone did touch me," said Jesus. "I know that power has gone out from me."
NLT But Jesus said, 'Someone deliberately touched me, for I felt healing power go out from me.'
KJV And Jesus said, Somebody hath touched me: for I perceive that virtue is gone out of me.

What does Luke 8:46 mean?

Amid an aggressive mob, pushing against and reaching toward Him, Jesus feels a particular touch that draws power from Him. He asks who it is who touched Him. Peter sees the crowd and wonders how Jesus could hope to find the culprit (Luke 8:40–45).

Theologians also wonder why Jesus asked, but for a different reason. Jesus is God. As such, He has all the characteristics of God, like omnipotence and omniscience. Theologians debate as to whether He actively used these characteristics while He was on earth in a physical body. Many say yes—God does not change (Malachi 3:6) and so the character of Jesus' deity did not change. Jesus' question (Luke 8:45) would be consistent with God's habit of asking questions to invite people into conversation, not to gain information (Genesis 3:9; Job 1:7; Exodus 4:2).

Scripture seems to indicate another possibility. When Jesus was a child, He "increased in wisdom and in stature" (Luke 2:52). Hebrews says Jesus "learned obedience" (Hebrews 5:8). When Jesus became incarnate, He "emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men" (Philippians 2:7). That could imply Jesus deliberately limiting His use of certain divine powers to live a fully human life. Does Jesus know who touched Him? We don't know.

Scholars also debate as to what it means that power went out of—in this case, meaning flowed through, not drained from—Jesus. Is this the power He has by virtue of being God? Does the Holy Spirit empower Him (Mark 3:22–30; Luke 4:14)? Again, we don't know as it's not the point of the verse.

The purpose is to draw attention to the woman. She is trying to hide, knowing that by touching a religious leader while in a ceremonially unclean state, she has broken a serious taboo (Leviticus 15:25–30). Jesus is more concerned with her. By calling her out, He can publicly praise her faith and announce to everyone that she is now healed—she is no longer unclean—and she is able to join society again (Luke 8:48).
What is the Gospel?
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