Summary: Blind Bartimaus a picture of a sinner such as I
A Blind Man’s Cry
We see here a picture of a man who was without sight, who heard about Jesus, and cried out for mercy. Too often we hear salvation described in such a light way we get the idea, it’s just turning over a new leaf. Throughout the Bible we see salvation described as a radical change in the person, a new creature, a blind man given sight, a lunatic made sane, and a dead man given life.
Here, I believe, we see salvation shown as a blind man given sight. There are several different stories in the scriptures where blind men are healed, each time it is different. I believe this is so we might understand God is absolutely Sovereign and can do whatever He desires in whatever way He desires.
I. The Person: The first verse we look at v.46 tells us two things about the person we are speaking about. He is blind and he is a beggar.
1. His Condition: He is blind, he cannot see. I must admit the losing of any of my senses would be awful, but I believe I would dread more the loss of my sight. It seems a blind man is at everyone’s mercy. This is the condition God used to describe you and I, before we knew Christ Jesus our Lord. We were without sight. We could see nothing of value to life.
To think you would never see the beauty of God’s creation again. Your loved ones faces you would never again look upon. For you or I to go blind would seem to be an awful thing and certainly a radical change in our lives. We depend so much on our sight, as we go through life.
2. His Circumstances:
He is poor, he must depend upon the alms which he begs to feed him. He probably had no friends of which he could turn for help. A blind beggar’s friends are others that have similar problems. There may have been other beggars that had different infirmities.
Every morning someone probably had to help Bartimaeus to get to the place where he would spend his time begging for alms. He had no thought of God nor the things of God, only for survival. His life seemed hopeless, there was no better for him. Then on this day, he hears the commotion, what’s happening ? he asked. What is everyone talking about. Jesus is coming may have been the reply.
He may have asked, “who is this Jesus?” Haven’t you heard, He is a miracle worker, He is a great healer of the sick, He is a friend to the poor. Bartemaeus may have thought, this may be someone who can help me. A tiny thread of hope began to grow within him. We do not know if this is the case, all we know is that when he heard it was Jesus, something caused him to cry out for mercy.
II. His Plea: (v.47)
“Jesus, Thou Son of David, have mercy on me.” He is crying out to Jesus. Is this man a fit candidate to be a disciple? Surely, he must be cleaned up to come to the Lord of Glory. He cannot expect the Lord to receive him as he is.
One of the disciples may have heard him first. A voice crying out, they looked about to see who this was crying out. Maybe it’s one of the priests, or some wealthy person who is very important. No it’s only this beggar, ragged, dirty and he has no sight. Another time they had seen a blind man and had asked, “who did sin this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” I would imagine, our natures being as they are, this time, the disciple may have thought, just a blind, dirty, sinful beggar looking to take advantage of the Lord’s compassion.
The Bible says, that some there tried to silence this beggar, saying hold your peace, but instead of being silent he began to cry out the more. I would imagine he raised his voice and began to shout. He felt he must get the attention of this man called Jesus.
The title he used for Christ, Thou Son of David, had a significant meaning. The Messiah, long expected by the people of Israel was to come through the lineage of David. Bartimaeus may have been familiar with the scripture that said, Isa 35:5, Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped.
We do not know what was in the mind of this blind beggar except we know his desire was to see. This man called Jesus of Nazareth is passing by, he must call out to him. It’s with just such a thought we sing, “Pass me not o’ gentle Savior, hear my humble cry..” This blind beggar knew he must cry out. “Jesus Thou Son of David have mercy on me.”