Matthew 9:23 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Matthew 9:23, NIV: When Jesus entered the synagogue leader's house and saw the noisy crowd and people playing pipes,

Matthew 9:23, ESV: And when Jesus came to the ruler’s house and saw the flute players and the crowd making a commotion,

Matthew 9:23, KJV: And when Jesus came into the ruler's house, and saw the minstrels and the people making a noise,

Matthew 9:23, NASB: When Jesus came into the official’s house and saw the flute players and the crowd in noisy disorder,

Matthew 9:23, NLT: When Jesus arrived at the official's home, he saw the noisy crowd and heard the funeral music.

Matthew 9:23, CSB: When Jesus came to the leader's house, he saw the flute players and a crowd lamenting loudly.

What does Matthew 9:23 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Jesus and the disciples were following Jairus to his house. This ruler of the synagogue had asked Jesus to make his daughter well, though by the time they set off to see her, she was already dead (Matthew 9:18–19; Mark 5:21–24). After being delayed by the woman who touched the edge of His cloak and was healed (Matthew 9:20–22), Jesus and His followers arrive at Jairus's home.

When they arrive, the period of ceremonial mourning has already begun. Very quickly following death, professional mourners would come to make a great commotion on behalf of the friends and family. Instruments would be played amidst loud wailing. This seems unusual to modern readers, especially in the west, but these were the common aspects of mourning—much as flower arrangements and "viewing" services are in modern times.

In the following verse, Jesus will command the mourners to leave. He will tell them the girl is not dead, after all.