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JAIRUS (jā'ĭ-rŭs, Gr. Iaeiros). A synagogue ruler whose child Jesus raised from death (Mark.5.22; Luke.8.41). The Gospel accounts vary somewhat in details, but all agree that the miracle of rising from death occurred.

JAIRUS jā ī’ rəs (̓Ιάϊρος, G2608, W-H ̓Ιάειρος; LXX Ιάϊρ, for Heb. יָאִֽיר, meaning, He will enlighten, or in 1 Chron 20:5 for Heb. יָעִ֗יר, He will arouse). A name found in the OT, Apoc., Jos. War, and the NT, in the last lit. being used for a synagogue official whose dead daughter Jesus raised to life.

The NT incident, located near Lake Galilee (Mark 5:21-24, 35-43; Luke 8:40-42, 49-56; Matt 9:18, 19, 23-26), tells how a synagogue official named Jairus unnamed in the Matt. parallel implores Jesus to come and raise to life his twelve year old daughter, which the Savior did.

Although the words, “Jairus by name” in Mark 5:22 are omitted by two ancient MSS (D and itala), there is no reason to suspect, as some have done, that the name was not a part of early MS material, but added from Luke later. Observe that most of the early Markan MSS support the inclusion of the name, and that this and other NT names occur in 1st and 2nd cent. ossuary inscr. (FLAP, 333).

That the word “Jairus” may be from Heb. יָעִ֗יר, “he will awaken” (as rarely, 1 Chron 20:5), which corresponds to the daughter’s “awakening,” does not show that the narrative is a legendary resurrection as some have claimed, because Jairus is generally used for Heb. יָאִֽיר, “he will enlighten,” and because, as Mark (5:41) and Luke (8:54) show, this was not an “awakening” but a “rising” (ἔγειρε, “get up”).


A. Plummer, Gospel According to St. Luke, ICC (1898), Luke 8.

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (1915)

ja’-i-rus, ja-i’-rus (Iaeiros; 1 Esdras 5:31; Additions to Esther 11:2).

See Airus; Jair.

ja’-i-rus, ja-i’-rus (Iaeiros): A ruler in a synagogue near Capernaum whose only daughter, aged about 12 years, was raised from the dead by Jesus (Mt 9:18-26; Mr 5:22-43; Lu 8:41-56). The accounts of the miracle are substantially the same, but vary in detail. According to Mark and Luke the arrival of Jairus in Capernaum fell immediately after the return of Jesus from Gadara, but according to Matthew the sequence of events was that Jesus had returned to Capernaum, had called Matthew, had joined the feast of the publicans, and had just finished His discourse on fasting when Jairus came to Him. Matthew and Mark both testify to the great faith of Jairus, who besought of Jesus that He should but lay His hand upon the maid and she should live. According to Matthew she was already dead when Jairus came to Capernaum; according to the others she was on the point of death; but all agree as to her death before the arrival of Jesus and His followers at her abode. Matthew implies that Jesus alone was present at the actual raising; Mark and Luke state that Peter, James, John and the parents were also there. The healing of the woman with the issue of blood by Jesus on the way is given by all.