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Mark 5:42

ESV And immediately the girl got up and began walking (for she was twelve years of age), and they were immediately overcome with amazement.
NIV Immediately the girl stood up and began to walk around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished.
NASB And immediately the girl got up and began to walk, for she was twelve years old. And immediately they were completely astonished.
CSB Immediately the girl got up and began to walk. (She was twelve years old.) At this they were utterly astounded.
NLT And the girl, who was twelve years old, immediately stood up and walked around! They were overwhelmed and totally amazed.
KJV And straightway the damsel arose, and walked; for she was of the age of twelve years. And they were astonished with a great astonishment.

What does Mark 5:42 mean?

As with Peter's mother-in-law (Mark 1:30–31), the girl's recovery is full and immediate. The reaction of those who witness this event is exactly what one would expect: amazement, astonishment, and surprise. Given the tragic nature of this particular case, it's also understandable that these people would be "overcome" with emotion.

The girl is first described as Jairus' "little daughter" (Mark 5:23). "Little daughter" is from the Greek root word thugatrion. In Jewish culture, a girl from birth to age eleven is a child, from eleven to twelve is under-age, and from twelve to twelve-and-a-half is a "young daughter." Some time during her twelfth year, she becomes a legal adult.

The healing of Jairus' daughter presents a moral dilemma for the Christian. She is healed as part of God's plan for Jesus' ministry, but from a human viewpoint, she is merely in the right place at the right time. If the people of Decapolis hadn't run Jesus back across the Sea of Galilee, or if He had decided to go to Bethsaida instead of Capernaum, where we assume they were, the girl would have died and no one would have thought anything about it. Without question, there were many other children who died in Israel that year who were not near enough to Jesus to be healed.

The dilemma raised is painful, and challenging. Why does God allow children to die? If life is so precious, why does He let babies die in the womb? Perhaps more troubling, why does He save some and not others?

The day-to-day workings of the world are an opaque mix of human free will and God's divine work put into play for His glory and our salvation. In the modern world, His primary work is done through His followers in the church. In as much as childhood death bothers us, it is our responsibility to study medicine, feed the hungry, and support research of childhood diseases. God's love is not shown in His miraculous works so much as it is in the hands of His followers. Children are proved to have value when we do the work that shows we value them.
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