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In Jesus heals the man at the pool of Bethesda we learn some surprising and amazing things that apply to us and our needs, today. The paralytic man was confronted with the question of his life...and ours. 

Jesus Heals The Man at the Pool of Bethesda-1

Harmony Of The Gospels Series 9, John 5:1-8

For more information about Jesus see these books on the History of Jesus Christ

"Some time later, Jesus went up to Jerusalem for a feast of the Jews. Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate a pool, which in Aramaic is called Bethesda and which is surrounded by five covered colonnades. Here a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed. One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, "Do you want to get well?" "Sir," the invalid replied, "I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me." Then Jesus said to him, "Get up! Pick up your mat and walk." At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked."

What's up with us? We bounce around life, from one weakness to another. If you're like me, most of the time your focus is on an illness, a weakness or some disability that seems to almost paralyze you from any progress. How long will we shake in our boots over battles God has already won? Maybe your battle is with a sin area, like lust or dishonesty or gossip; maybe it's a weakness, like alcoholism or drug addiction, or a chronic illness there seems to be no help for. Whatever your areas are, be assured you aren't alone. I've got 'em, too. We all do. It seems we get over one just to find a bigger one to take its place. Maybe you've met people like I used to be; priding myself on God's healing as if I'd done it. So, then pride became the issue I needed healing from. I'll tell you from experience, God's healing for pride is not pleasant. What are we to do? Some of these best-selling books on the healing of Jesus can help you understand.  These books How do we escape this seemingly perpetual cycle of weakness and sickness? It begins with an understanding illustrated by our Scripture passage, this week. We must understand, no matter how things seem, that:

Jesus will heal anyone who wants to be healed.

Jesus healed the paralytic despite his obvious doubt, despite the fact he clearly didn't even know who Jesus was. Jesus started by asking:

1. The Right Question: "Do you want to get well?"

Let's start by covering the vs 4 controversy. The KJV and other old translations include a verse 4 which is an explanation as to why all the disabled people were laying around this pool of water…'because whoever was first in the water after an angel stirred it, would be healed. Discoveries of numerous older and more reliable manuscripts of this chapter happened after the KJV was written. These manuscripts do not include vs 4. Most, nearly all, Biblical translation scholars agree that vs 4 was later added by a scribe to further explain the story. Moral: The Bible, in its original writing, is God's perfect Word. Not every translation reflects the original writing. Still, all the differences are listed in a book about the size of a giant print deck of cards, and all those differences are in areas of minor significance.

Assuming the explanation in vs four is accurate, and everyone was there waiting for an angel to stir the water so they could be healed, why would Jesus ask such a stupid question? "Do you want to get well?" 'Of course he does!' we all yell back to the Bible. 'Why would he be there if he didn't want to get well?' Is it possible Jesus knew something we don't? Very! First of all, we all know of people who profess to want help out of their circumstance, but really want help to stay in it. I call them the "will work for food" people. In California, it's a common sight…people sitting at heavy traffic areas with a hand-printed, cardboard sign that says "will work for food", or some variation on that theme. Dennis, a friend of mine who is a general contractor, used to stop at every one he could find and offer them simple, unskilled labor type work. Out of numerous stops, he found not one who would take him up on his offer, though they all seemed to be able bodied. He got a wild and entertaining array of 'reasons' people couldn't work paintbrushes and brooms. His conclusion, and mine, was that they didn't want to "work for food." As long as people continued to toss money to them for just sitting there, looking sad.

Continued at Jesus heals man At The Pool Of Bethesda-2

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