The miracle working God of the Old Testament is still a miracle working God today!
Psalms 77:14 (TLB) You are the God of miracles and wonders! You still demonstrate your awesome power.
Job 5:9 (NLT) He does great things too marvelous to understand. He performs countless miracles.
Jeremiah 32:27 (NIV) “I am the LORD, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me?
Do you really want to be made well?
John 5:1-5 (NKJV) After this there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. (2) Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew, Bethesda, having five porches. (3) In these lay a great multitude of sick people, blind, lame, paralyzed, waiting for the moving of the water. (4) 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. (5) Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years.
We want to acknowledge Pastor Rick Renner for his insights on this story of miraculous healing from his messages on the Miracles of Jesus Christ.
- Pool of Bethesda was not always named this.
- At one time it was a beautiful place for the rich and educated of the day to go and bathe and have some spa treatment.
- It was usually spring fed either with warm spring water or fresh, natural, and clean spring water.
- It was ornately decorated with marble and frescoes – similar to what we see has been excavated in Pompeii, Italy today.
- Over time the spring water must have dried up as we see the water was not moving.
- Because of the five porches surrounding the pool, the wind did not even stir the water and it must have become stagnant.
- Because of this, the wealthy and the educated moved to another pool and the sick people moved in.
- The Scripture says that there was a great multitude of sick people lying there almost on top of each other waiting to be healed.
- The name “Bethesda” means “house of mercy” or “place where mercy was poured out”.
- The sick people waited for the angel to come and stir and agitate the water and then the first one in would get healed.
Suppositions about the man:
- This man had been in this condition 38 years.
- We can assume that he first went there with faith in his heart that he would get healed, but maybe over time, he had lost hope
- He had seen many of his friends get healed and yet he was still lying there.
John 5:6 (NKJV) 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?”
Jesus walks up on the scene and sees the man lying there.
Jesus always sees more than just the outward circumstances – he sees what is going on in the inside of the man.
1 Samuel 16:7 (NKJV) But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at his physical stature, because I have refused him. For the LORD does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”
- Jesus could see this man’s heart.
- He could see that the man had faith at one time but had lost hope of being healed
- Jesus asks the man a very unusual question, “Do you want to be made well?”
- This question is very important.
- After a long time of waiting and lying there in the same sick condition, year after year, he had begun to adapt to his circumstances.
- He thought and acted like a sick person.
- All of his friends were sick people that had been lying there with him.
- All of their conversations must have been about their conditions and what they were feeling that day.
- Someone had been providing for him – food, clothing, etc.
- Once he was healed, he would have to begin assuming some responsibility.
- He would have to get a job.
- He might have to get some education.
- He would have to get some new friends and become a healthy member of society.
- Jesus was really asking him, “Do you really want me to radically change your life? Do you want everything in your life to be transformed?
- Receiving healing was not just about feeling better.
Many people today say they want to change and experience Jesus’ miracle working power in their lives – until they really understand what will be required of them
They have grown accustomed to their dysfunction, their sickness, or their financial situation.
To leave these would be to leave what they understand as normal and that with which they have grown comfortable.
Look at how the man responded to Jesus’ question:
John 5:7 (NKJV) The sick man answered Him, “Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; but while I am coming, another steps down before me.”
- The man offered a detailed excuse as to why he was still sick and in the condition that he was.
- Many times, I have seen people do the same thing when asked a similar question.
- “I would be changed but my husband…” or “I would be changed but my wife…” or “My boss…”
Perhaps we have not received our miracle because we are not through making excuses and being willing to change to the new well condition.
Jesus then seeing through the man’s excuses gives him a command of faith.
John 5:8-10 (NKJV) Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your bed and walk.” (9) And immediately the man was made well, took up his bed, and walked. And that day was the Sabbath. (10) The Jews therefore said to him who was cured, “It is the Sabbath; it is not lawful for you to carry your bed.”
- One thing to note is that the religious leaders were blinded and offended at the miracle this man had received.
- Instead of seeing God’s goodness, they saw him violating the rules.
- Not everyone is going to celebrate with you that you have decided to change your situation and receive your miracle.
- Don’t let that stop you from receiving your miracle – make up your mind you will receive what God has for you and transform your life.
The Greek word for “cured” is the word “therapeuo” which is where we get the word “therapy”. This word means a healing touch that requires corresponding action.
Think about it, someone gets some kind of surgery such as knee replacement or hip replacement, it usually requires physical therapy to aid in the healing process.
Jesus did not just release His miracle-working power, the man responded to it with corresponding action to cooperate with and confirm the healing process.
You do not have to wait 38 years for your situation to change. When the man obeyed Jesus’ instruction the power of God took root in him, and he was completely healed. After 38 years, this man’s time had come. Your time has come too!
Hebrews 13:8 (NKJV) Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.