How to Save the Planet: Calling for Sacred Room

Janis Hunt Johnson
5 min readJan 1, 2020
Steve Oust — Pixabay

Clearing a Space for Healing

There are many reports in the Bible of people being healed of various diseases and afflictions. The prophet Elijah, Christ Jesus, and the Apostles Peter and Paul even raised the dead.

One such account of a young girl who is gravely ill is told in three different versions of the Gospel (Mark 5:21–43, Matthew 9:18–26, and Luke 8:40–56). The girl’s father, Jairus, is a well-known leader at the local synagogue, and he begs Jesus to heal her. But while they’re walking along, one of the man’s staff informs him that she has already died, “so don’t bother the Master.”

When Jesus hears the news, he isn’t impressed in the least. He keeps going, telling Jairus not to be afraid, but only to believe.

Jesus arrives at the house, and it’s full of commotion: Relatives and friends are bawling over the girl, making a racket. So the first thing he does is clear the room.

Then he simply tells the girl to “arise,” and miraculously she is alive again.

In Matthew’s version of the story, when Jesus sees all the people making a fuss over the child’s untimely death, he says firmly, “Give place!” and shoos them all out. Then he takes the girl by the hand, and she is alive again.

The word for “place” in Hebrew is makom, which is also a word some people use to indicate God — because God, being all and being infinite, is in every place.

In Mark’s account, Jesus takes the girl’s hand, and says, “‘Talitha cumi,’ which means, ‘Little girl, I say to you, arise.’” And the girl gets right up, good as new.

What Does This Bible Story Have to Do with Saving the World?

Take a moment, and look at the similarity between the word makom (“place”) and cumi (written as koum in some translations) (“arise”). They actually contain the same Hebrew root, koom, meaning to “arise,” “rise,” or “stand.” This root word appears over a thousand times in the Old Testament (see Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament, no. 1999), often connoting a command to show respect; to prepare to take action; to take a stand for what’s right; and to accept God’s promise.

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Janis Hunt Johnson

Author, 5 Smooth Stones: Our Power to Heal Without Medicine through the Science of Prayer. Transformational Editor. From Chicago to L.A., now in Pacific NW.