“Do You Want To Be Made Well?”
Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew, Bethesda, having five porches. In these lay a great multitude of sick people, blind, lame, paralyzed, waiting for the moving of the water. For an angel went down at a certain time into the pool and stirred up the water; then whoever stepped in first, after the stirring of the water, was made well of whatever disease he had.
Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him, "Do you want to be made well?"
[John 5:2-6 NKJV]
Sometimes The Lord shows you an aspect of scripture that you have failed to notice before. The story of Jesus healing the sick man at the Pool of Bethesda is a familiar one, but somehow I have failed to notice - over many readings - that an angel went down at a certain time into the pool and stirred up the water. This was the time to effect healing.
There is a time for everything in the Spirit and the living healing waters have to be stirred up. Without the stirring, without the movement in the water, it would stagnate, algae would grow and the pool would be impure - so it is in the Spirit. If I allow the water of the Spirit to cloud with impurities I cannot be refreshed; there is a barrier between me and God.
Jesus asked the man “Do you want to be made well?”, which might be thought a strange question, and could have received a curt reply; but Jesus knew what was in man, and understood that many of us - after living with a condition for a long time - do not want to be healed.
There is a scene in a comedy film, where a leper complains that, being healed of his leprosy, he has lost his means of income. No one has any sympathy for a beggar who was healthy enough to go out to work.
At the pool of Bethesda ["house of mercy" or "flowing water”] Jesus recognised that the infirmity was spiritual not natural; the man was too lazy to make the effort to enter the healing waters. In the Bible we see a principle, “first the natural, then the spiritual”; but for Jesus the spiritual came first - heal that, and the natural follows.
Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your bed and walk.” And immediately the man was made well, took up his bed, and walked. [John 5:8-9 NKJV]
All it took was a word from Jesus to change the situation. The man had been washed by the water of the word and been made complete. Jesus cut through the excuse. Jesus went straight from “Do you want to be made well?” to “Rise, take up your bed and walk.” The only thing in between was the man’s excuse. For “take up your bed” read “do not lie down or submit to this spirit”. The difference is in this one thing - it is not man who speaks, but Jesus. As we have seen when Jesus spoke to the woman of Samaria ...
Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”
[John 4:13-14 NKJV]
Jesus is the moving of the water.
“Let Your Living Water Flow” - Vinesong
OSWALD CHAMBERS - RUN TODAY’S RACE
Wednesday 24th June 2020
Are we detached enough from our own spiritual hysterics to wait on God? To wait is not to sit with folded hands, but to learn to do what we are told. These are phases of His ways we rarely recognise.
GEORGE and GILL STEWART