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Prayer's Reward

It's Jesus. Luke 8.48-56

Luke 8 Part 2 (6)

Pray Psalm 102.1-4.
Hear my prayer, O LORD,
And let my cry come to You.
Do not hide Your face from me in the day of my trouble;
Incline Your ear to me;
In the day that I call, answer me speedily.
For my days are consumed like smoke,
And my bones are burned like a hearth.
My heart is stricken and withered like grass,
So that I forget to eat my bread.

Sing Psalm 102.1-4.
(St Chrysostom: Not What My Hands Have Done)
Lord, hear my prayer and cry; hide not Your face from me!
In my distress and tears I sigh – Lord, hear my earnest plea!
My days like smoke blow past; my bones are scorched with sin.
My heart, like wilted, withered grass bends low to earth again.

Read Luke 8.1-56; meditate on verse 48-56.


1. What did Jesus say to the woman?

2. What did he say to the people at Jairus’ house?

In response to their prayers, Jesus brought the great hopes of both Jairus and the woman to reality. She was healed and saved; his daughter was restored to life. Faith, expressed in earnest, humble, trusting, persistent prayer, can bring rewards from the Lord, Who seeks faith in us.

But those rewards will not always match up to our expectation. We sometimes say that God hasn’t answered our prayer, when what we really mean is that God hasn’t told me what to do or given me what I requested. But God hears the prayers of His humble, faithful children, and He answers them according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. He has promised that if we call on Him, He will answer us and show us great things and even mysteries we have not known before (Jer. 33.3).

The unbelief of the people gathered at Jairus’ home did not keep Jesus from His determined course. He was answering the prayers of a faithful servant; He would not be deterred though the whole community and the whole world did not believe.

And so it is today. Jesus is ready to hear and answer our prayers. He will do so, above all else, by giving us more of Himself – His Presence, attention, Word, and Spirit – and, if it suits His purposes, according to our request. We must never give up on prayer. Never doubt the Lord’s good intentions to hear and answer. And never think that we know best what’s best for us in every situation. The great reward of prayer is to know that our Lord and Savior hears, cares, and answers out of the abundance of His eternal wisdom, goodness, and love.

Treasures Old and New: Matthew 13.52; Psalm 119.162
“Do not weep; she is not dead, but sleeping” (Lk. 8.52).

Whether it happened right then, or it happened later, the truth of what Jesus said rings true. For each one of us who draws breath will one day stop. And we, too, will be sleeping in Christ. Or if it should happen simultaneously with Christ’s return, then we will be awake. Either way, Jesus’ miracle for Jairus and his daughter is a picture of what happens upon a person’s death and resurrection.

“Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed—in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed” (1 Cor. 15.51, 52). Can you hear the thrilling music of Handel’s rendition of this?

“For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words” (1 Thess. 4.16-18).

There is much comfort to be experienced in these words! We dare not be like the mourners in Jairus’ living room. “And they ridiculed Him, knowing that she was dead” (Lk. 8.53). Well, they didn’t know anything. They just ridiculed. And cruelly. In front of grieving parents, you do not ridicule anyone. What were they thinking?

But isn’t that the way folks can be when they don’t want to believe Jesus’ words? For if you believe Him, then you take on the responsibility of having to do what He says. “…for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins” (Jn. 8.24). “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me” (Jn. 10.27).

“If you love Me, keep My commandments” (Jn. 14.15) “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me” (Lk. 9.23). To ridicule is so much easier.

When we are ready to stop ridiculing, and start believing, that is when we experience the glories of prayer. To be in communion with Him, believing and trusting, so that whatever He says is what we believe to be true. And the eternal joy and glory of this truth is: “Jesus is ready to hear and answer our prayers. He will do so, above all else, by giving us more of Himself.”

“Prayer’s Reward.”

For reflection
1. What makes Jesus so desirable as the reward of all our prayers?

2. What have you learned about prayer from Jairus and the woman Jesus healed?

3. How are you hoping to see your own prayer life improve, so that you know more of prayer’s reward day by day?

This woman came trembling, yet her faith saved her. There may be trembling, where yet there is saving faith. Observe Christ’s comfortable words to Jairus, Fear not, believe only, and thy daughter shall be made whole. Matthew Henry (1662-1714), Commentary on Luke 8.41-56

Pray Psalm 102.5-14.
Pray that God would revive His Church and that we would recover our vision of Jesus and our calling to seek His Kingdom and glory.

Sing Psalm 102.5-14.
(St Chrysostom: Not What My Hands Have Done)
With loudest groans and cries, and leanness in my soul,
no shelt’ring place arrests my eyes, no rest to make me whole.
My enemies grow strong; I weep with bitter tears.
My days are like a shadow, long; God’s face is no more near.

But You, O Lord, abide forever in Your place.
Arise and stand on Zion’s side and lavish us with grace!
Revive Your Church, O Lord! Let all her dust and stones
Be strengthened by Your mighty Word, and compact be as one.

T. M. and Susie Moore

You can download all the studies in our Luke series by clicking here.

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Except as indicated, all Scriptures are taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. For sources of all quotations, see the weekly PDF of this study. All psalms for singing are from The Ailbe Psalter (Williston: Waxed Tablet Publications, 2006), available by clicking here.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
Books by T. M. Moore

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