Mark 5:36 - Do not fear, only believe.

Jairus’ daughter is declared dead. And Jesus responds with the above words. And then he resurrects her.

In the fight against sin, many of us get a daily reminder from some voice in our heart, “You will never be free from this. You’re dead. You’re worthless. You’ll always be imprisoned. Give up! You’re a fraud and you’re toast.”

Jesus told the people at Jairus’ house, “The child is not dead but sleeping.”

“And they laughed at him” (Mark 5:40).

Being stuck in sin (any kinds - including not being able to hold our tongue, raging at traffic in the car, compulsively eating too many cookies, lusting, envying others’ looks, coveting others’ things, etc) feels like we’re being punked, put to shame, and being laughed at.

There’s a sense of finality - like death. There’s no fight going on. It’s mostly just failure. Because we’re stuck in this fallen, vulnerable flesh.

Jesus might reply, “Do not fear, only believe.”

In other words, nothing is over, have faith.

It is faith in Jesus that saves people from condemnation. And that sounds crazy.

So let it be no more crazy when we ask, “How do I defeat sin?” and the answer comes back - faith:

Galatians 6:16 - In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one

It’s faith in the Holy Spirit to do the work:

Romans 8:13 - if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

Satan often speaks some kernel of truth when he lies. “You’re dead!” he tells us. And that’s true. “Live by the flesh and die.” But there’s a lot more to the story.

The one who raises from the dead is here! And he has come to attack:

Galatians 6:17-18 - take… the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication.

May God teach us what this means and precisely how to do it with the most devastating effect possible - annihilation of the deeds of the flesh. May he produce in us a harvest of fruit worthy of his name. Lord, may we follow you one step at a time further into the kingdom.