THE STORY OF TABITHA
By Sukanya Banerjee
Life is a beautiful gift from God and we must use it to glorify Him and in the service of others. The Bible says in the Gospel of Mark 10:45, “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” The ‘King of Kings and the Lord of Lords,’ JESUS Christ came into this world to serve and give His life for others. Therefore, we as believers of JESUS Christ should follow His path of love, sacrifice and service to others. We must remember that ‘we are in this world but we are not of this world.’ We are here in this world to be a blessing and an inspiration to others. Our life should glorify our Lord by being of service to others just like a woman named Tabitha mentioned in the book of Acts 9: 36 -43.
We have always been familiar with the resurrection of Lazarus mentioned in the Gospel of John chapter 11. But the Bible also mentions the resurrection of a woman named Tabitha in Acts 9: 36 -43. The story of Tabitha begins by addressing Tabitha as a ‘disciple’ who lived in the city of Joppa. Yes, disciples of Christ are not gender limited. There has always been the existence of women disciples of Christ who have made a lasting impact on the society through their sacrificial living of long suffering, love, patience and service to others. Tabitha was one such disciple of Christ who had dedicated her life into the service of widows. Not much information is available about her family background but this portion from Acts 9 beautifully describes her love and service towards the widows who became her family.
The Bible describes Tabitha (or Dorcas) as “a woman full of good works and charitable deeds.” The life of Tabitha clearly points out the attributes required to be a true ‘Disciple of Christ.” Like Tabitha, we should also be engaged in good works, in doing good to others and certainly, in charitable deeds. Tabitha’s life can be compared to the life of a modern-day missionary committed in serving the widows for whom she loved making tunics and garments. The Bible teaches us in James 1:27 that “Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble…” Thus, Tabitha was engaged in pure religious activity of serving others especially the widows and she was never tired of her good deeds. She enjoyed this life of a disciple of Christ.
Acts 9:37 further informs us that this woman of God named Tabitha suddenly became ill and passed away. Her death had completely shattered the widows whom she cared and looked after. The widows were her family who were completely heartbroken by her sudden death. As Tabitha laid dead, surrounded by her family, God sent his Apostle named Peter to raise Tabitha back to life. Peter who was then at a town named Lydda which was very near to Joppa, was informed and brought to the house where Tabitha laid dead. Verses 40 - 41 says, “But Peter put them all out, and knelt down and prayed. And turning to the body he said, ‘Tabitha arise.’ And she opened her eyes and when she saw Peter, she sat up. Then he gave her his hand and lifter her up…” These two verses beautifully describe the marvelous works of a miracle working God whom we serve. God can also lift us up from all our deadly situations in life. Tabitha was dead. But God sent help through his disciple to raise another disciple BACK TO LIFE! Amen.
The final verses especially verse 42 says, “And it became known throughout all Joppa, and many believed on the Lord.” When God sends help, and raises us up from all our death-like situations in life, we become a source of inspiration to others and a glory to God. Our miracle in life brings many disturbed and lost souls to Christ. Our resurrection in life inspires many burdened and lost souls who might have been facing death-like situations and awaiting divine help.
Therefore, as the Bible teaches us in Galatians 6:9-10 “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of faith.…” Tabitha never gave up in serving the Lord by doing good to others. And that is why God sent her help even when she was declared dead by the world, to raise her back to life so that she may not only continue with her good works, but so that many souls may come to the Lord by knowing her story!
Sukanya Banerjee is a Communicator, Vocalist, Writer, English Trainer, Speaker and a Radio Jockey. We would love to get a feedback from you about this article. Kindly post a comment below. Thank you.