Healing by the Pool at Bethesda

By: jdcharles63
Date: 03/12/2023

Here at the Lord’s table, we celebrate the victory won by Jesus, to free us from the crippling effects of our slavery to sin.
Jesus took the penalty of our sin upon himself, when on the cross he suffered the death due to us.

This meal was commanded by Jesus at the time of the Passover, when Israel remembered how God had freed them from slavery, in Egypt.
But the response of Israel after being freed was to refuse to enter the land God had promised them.  They claimed they were not strong enough to take it, and they forgot that God had achieved everything for them.
In Deuteronomy 2:14, we read that for their refusal to accept God’s gift, they were condemned to wander in the desert for 38 years.

And in ch 5 of John’s gospel, we read of a paralysed man by the pool at Bethesda, who had also been waiting for 38 years, to receive healing.
The plight of this man points to the condition of Israel at that time; they were crippled by separation from God, and were waiting for deliverance by the Messiah.

It’s amazing that when Jesus asked this man the simple question, “do you want to be made well?”, he couldn’t answer Yes.
Instead, he repeated a ritual complaint about the motion of the water, and his inability to move when needed.  He had lost sight of his great need for healing, and of God who is the source of healing.
Like the Israelites who fled Egypt, and many in Jesus’ day, he was unwilling to claim God’s provision.  He had allowed daily concerns and rituals to become his focus; he had turned away from God, and become self-reliant.

After healing him, Jesus later told him to “Sin no more.”

Today, mankind is still suffering from the crippling effects of sin and separation from God.
Many cannot see we are not meant to be in this fallen condition, and that our urgent need is for healing from sin through Jesus.

Jesus’ question to the man by the pool applies to us – Do we want to be healed and made complete in Him?  He freely offers that gift, of which this meal is a reminder.
And Jesus’ command to that man also applies to us.  He said, “Rise, take up your bed and walk.”

Jesus invites us to NOT be content with our fallen condition, NOR to focus on our inability and weakness, but to rise up in His strength, and walk boldly in the true life that He offers.


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