What does Mark 5:31 mean?
ESV: And his disciples said to him, “You see the crowd pressing around you, and yet you say, ‘Who touched me?’”
NIV: You see the people crowding against you,' his disciples answered, 'and yet you can ask, 'Who touched me?' '
NASB: And His disciples said to Him, 'You see the crowd pressing in on You, and You say, ‘Who touched Me?’?'
CSB: His disciples said to him, "You see the crowd pressing against you, and yet you say, 'Who touched me? ' "
NLT: His disciples said to him, 'Look at this crowd pressing around you. How can you ask, ‘Who touched me?’'
KJV: And his disciples said unto him, Thou seest the multitude thronging thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me?
NKJV: But His disciples said to Him, “You see the multitude thronging You, and You say, ‘Who touched Me?’ ”
Verse Commentary:
Jesus and the disciples are trying to follow a synagogue leader so Jesus can heal the man's young daughter. On the way, they are nearly smothered by a crowd trying to touch Jesus to receive healing. Jesus feels one person experiencing the healing she is looking for, through a touch of His robes, and He wishes to stop and identify that person.

The disciples respond with incredulity that Jesus would bother to try singling out the culprit. This speaks to the size of the crowd, but it also reflects a small part of the disciples' prejudices against those they consider beneath their notice. A synagogue leader has need of Jesus! Who in this crowd would be worthy enough to justify a delay? This sense of self-importance will grow. The disciples will attempt to "rescue" Jesus from the distraction of children (Matthew 19:13–15) and argue over who is greatest among them (Matthew 18:1–4). John and James will request to sit in places of honor when Jesus comes into His kingdom (Mark 10:35–37). And Peter will struggle for years with the idea that Jesus came for Gentiles as well as Jews (Acts 10:9–33; Galatians 2:11–14).

We are quick to follow the disciples' example when we use our status as Christ-followers to dismiss those who appear outwardly to be far from Him. God makes it clear that we see the outside, but God knows the heart (1 Samuel 16:7). We don't know the relationship between Christ and each person. We don't really know what kind of faith people have. There may be a time, such as here, when we dismiss an entire crowd as being a nuisance not worth our time, but Jesus stops and finds the one lost person (Luke 15:3–10) who is calling to Him in faith.

Jesus' response to the disciples' attempt to keep Him on track is eloquent in its simplicity: He ignores them. He responds to faith (Mark 5:34; 14:3–9; Matthew 15:21–28), not worldly status or even human-based common sense.
Verse Context:
Mark 5:25–34 interrupts a depiction of Jesus healing a synagogue leader's daughter. Before He can get through the crowd, He feels power flowing out of Him. A woman who has been hemorrhaging for twelve years touches His robe and God heals her. This passage shows that God is sovereign over our distractions; He will sometimes give us important work in the midst of other tasks. It also shows that we are not a nuisance to Him. He always has time for us. This account is also found in Matthew 9:20–22 and Luke 8:43–48.
Chapter Summary:
Jesus arrives on the other side of the Sea of Galilee and heals a man afflicted by a ''legion'' of demons. In the aftermath of this event, Jesus once again crosses the waters within this region, known as the Decapolis. There, He is approached by a synagogue leader, begging Him to come and save a dying girl. In the midst of this trip, Jesus stops the crowd to identify a woman who attempted to covertly touch his robes; her faithful act results in healing. Jesus then continues on to the home of the synagogue leader and resurrects his recently-deceased child.
Chapter Context:
Mark 4:35—5:43 sees an increase in the scope of Jesus' miracles. He has just calmed a violent storm on the Sea of Galilee. Now, He expels a legion of demons, heals a woman without overtly acting, and brings a girl back to life. All three situations—related to tombs, blood, and death—show Jesus bringing healing to unclean circumstances. In chapter 6, the tone of His ministry will develop. He will be rejected by those who should know Him best, He will send out His followers to do His work, and His direct link to the Old Testament prophets will be explained.
Book Summary:
The Gospel of Mark emphasizes both Jesus' servanthood and His role as the promised Messiah: the Son of God. This is done through a concise, action-packed style. Mark provides relatively few details, instead focusing on actions and simple statements. This relates to the Gospel's authorship, which is believed to be based on the memories of the apostle Peter. These include many of Jesus' miracles, in contrast to other Gospels which include many more of Jesus' teachings and parables. Mark also makes frequent mention of Jesus' ministry being misunderstood by others.
Accessed 4/23/2024 8:34:16 PM
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