Summary: Jesus offers us the healing that we need in thsi world.
Clarice Lukenbill, Spencer, Ind. Christian Reader, "Lite Fare." I overheard two older men talking about their health problems at our church. "My new doctor doesn’t just treat the symptoms, he treats both the mind and the body." "Hmm," the second man grunted and thought for a moment; then he asked, "Does he give a discount if the mind is already gone?"
A lady said early one Sunday morning I was awakened by the telephone. Thinking it was my son playing a joke on me, I picked up the receiver. In a hoarse whisper, the person on the other end asked, "Who is this?" Still convinced it was my son, I replied in a fake hoarse voice, "It’s your mother. What do you want?" To my horror the person identified herself as a church member who had been up all night with a terrible sore throat and was asking for prayer.
When you look around you at church on any given Sunday, what do you see? You see a lot of nice people who for the most part appear to have it all together.
When you leave the church and go out into the workplace on Monday, what do you see? Many people who appear to have it all together.
When you dig a little deeper with people, you find out that there are many hurting people who need healing from Jesus.
I am not just speaking of healing from physical illness. There are plenty of people who need that and our prayer list is a testimony of that.
What I am talking about are people who are truly hurting inside. The deeper you dig, the more pain you see. They have fears of losing their jobs, losing their spouse, their children or losing their lives.
When you look around you, you will see many hurting people who need the healing hand of Jesus in their lives.
Today as we continue our Journey with Jesus we find Jesus back in Jerusalem for the Passover. The date is AD 28 sometime between March and May. About three to four months have elapsed since Jesus healed the nobleman’s son in Capernaum. In this passage we will see the third recorded miracle of Jesus in the book of John.
On His way to celebrate the Passover, Jesus is about to encounter a person who is in dire need of healing in his life. Not only a physical healing but also a spiritual healing.
Today I hope that you will accept the healing that Jesus has to offer for your life!
I. THE NEED FOR HEALING 1-5 READ
As we read the text, this must have been a sad sight to behold. In Jesus day if you were sick, blind or lame, you were on your own. The government was not there to help you and the Jewish leaders were not always the most charitable people during Jesus day.
One of the reasons for this is that many felt that if you had physical aliments, that it was because of some sin you or your family committed in the past.
If you were blind or paralyzed, you were at the total mercy of other people. If you could not walk you had to have people who were willing to carry you to a public place so that you could beg for food and money.
Here we have Jesus standing in the midst of all these sick people. These people were lying by the pool of Bethesda because they though that when the waters stirred that an angel of the Lord caused it and the first one in was healed.
When you look at verses 3b and 4, these passages are not in the earliest or most reliable manuscripts. These verses would appear to be a later addition by a scribe who was trying to explain why the people were at the pool in the first place. The pool was fed by an underground spring that would bubble up on occasion and cause the waters to stir. The people would gather here because the porticoes would protect them from the weather.
This was a pathetic site to behold.
Here are all these sick people thinking that these waters would heal them. What a cruel site. These hurting people were putting their faith in some legend.
Just imagine being a person who was paralyzed lying next to this pool awaiting the waters to stir when all the sudden they stir, but since you cannot move, people push you aside and get into the water before you can. It was every person for themselves.
The ironic little twist to this scene is that the word “Bethesda” means “house of mercy.” Here all these people were fighting to get something they thought would help them. The scene here was not a very merciful one to see.