Monday, July 2, 2018

31 Days of Healing: Grace Causes Healing to Flow

The southern pool of the pools of Bethesda and fifth porch as seen from the south.
Photo courtesy of Lightstock and

After this there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 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?”

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.”

Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your bed and walk.” And immediately the man was made well, took up his bed, and walked.

And that day was the Sabbath. The Jews therefore said to him who was cured, “It is the Sabbath; it is not lawful for you to carry your bed.”

He answered them, “He who made me well said to me, ‘Take up your bed and walk.’ ”

Then they asked him, “Who is the Man who said to you, ‘Take up your bed and walk’?” But the one who was healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had withdrawn, a multitude being in that place. Afterward Jesus found him in the temple, and said to him, “See, you have been made well. Sin no more, lest a worse thing come upon you.”

The man departed and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well.-
John 5:1-15 (NKJV)

I might like this story a little bit.  This makes the second time I have written about it in my series on 31 Days of Healing. 
You can find the other post here.

This passage of Scripture has been a little confusing for me in the past, and I think for some other people as well. But recently, I looked at it again, and things I believe are significant opened up to me. I want to share those with you today.

It is important to note the setting of the event. We are told that the man is at the pool of Bethesda. The word "Beth" in Hebrew means "house." And the word "hesed" has multiple meanings including mercy, love, grace and kindness. So, the man was at a pool named "The house of grace." Also, the Bible says that there were 5 porches there. Five is also the number of grace in the Bible.

The sick man in this passage of Scripture had been that way a really long time, 38 years. That is longer than Jesus had been alive. Some people have surmised that he could have made it into the water if he wanted it badly enough. That may have been why Jesus asked him, "Do you want to be made well?" Because some people don't want to.

His answer though suggests he didn't have anybody to help him. He was just there. At this point in my walk, I don't think it is as significant to wonder why he hadn't been healed by being in the water already. However, I think it is very important that we examine how or why he got healed when Jesus came into the picture. I think this story is painted for us by the Holy Spirit to demonstrate how we can get healed too.

The man didn't know who Jesus was. So, it wasn't his faith in Jesus that healed him, like we see in other stories. But his story does have something in common with some of the other stories we are told about Jesus- freedom from the law.

Repeatedly we see Jesus healing people on the Sabbath. That made the religious leaders so mad, because they did not think Jesus could be from God because He was "breaking the law." He didn't come to break the law, but free us from it. In John 5, Jesus tells the man to pick up his mat and walk. It was unlawful for Jews to carry their sleeping mats on the Sabbath, because it was considered work. When Jesus said that to him, he was made well immediately! Immediately. I love that word. Immediately that man was freed from the power of the law, and Jesus put him under grace instead.

Grace causes healing to flow. It causes forgiveness and it causes healing. Throughout the Scriptures we see these two side by side, forgiveness and healing.

Jesus came to bring grace, and to remove us from living under the law. The Bible says that,

Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”),-Galatians 3:13 (NKJV)

Everything that Jesus did during His earthly ministry was a picture of what would be available to us as New Testament Believers.

As New Testament Believers, we are not under the law, but under grace. And grace is what causes healing to flow.

For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace.-Romans 6:14(NKJV)

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