The Daughter of Jairus -- By: Carl Armerding

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 105:417 (Jan 1948)
Article: The Daughter of Jairus
Author: Carl Armerding


The Daughter of Jairus

Carl Armerding

“She is not dead, but sleepeth” (Luke 8:52). In spite of this plain statement made by our Lord Jesus concerning the daughter of Jairus, we have generally included her in the number of persons whom our Lord raised from the dead when He was here on earth. We have assumed, of course, that when He said “She…sleepeth” He meant the same as when He said of Lazarus, “Our friend Lazarus sleepeth.” We find, however, that when the disciples thought that He was speaking of Lazarus as “taking rest in sleep” (John 11:13) He told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead.” There is no record of any such statement in connection with the daughter of Jairus. Moreover, when He said “She…sleepeth” He used a different word (καθεύδω) from the one found in John 11:11. The word that He used in connection with Lazarus (κοιμάω) is the same word that Paul used in 1 Thessalonians 4:13–15 in referring to “the dead in Christ.” But the word which Christ used in connection with the little maid is the word which Paul used in 1 Thessalonians 5:6 when he said, “Let us not sleep as do others.” Manifestly, the word “sleep” does not refer to death here, otherwise he would be exhorting the Thessalonians not to die! It is quite clear from the latter half of that same verse that sleeping there is the opposite of watching. And that, we believe, is the case also in 1 Thessalonians 5:10 where the word “wake” should have been translated “watch.” It is so rendered in verse 6 of the chapter .

But there is still another difference to be noted between the case of Lazarus and that of the daughter of Jairus. Of the former the Lord said, “I go, that I may awake him out

of sleep.” But of the latter He said, “Fear not, believe only, and she shall be made whole” (Luke 8:50). The one was a resurrection, the other a restoration. Lazarus thus became a sample of those whom the Lord will raise from among the dead when He comes again to receive His own unto Himself. But the restoration of the daughter of Jairus, on the other hand, may serve as an illustration of the recovery of one who “is dead while she liveth” (1 Tim 5:6). In saying that we are not denying...

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