“Do you want to be healed?” That is the question Jesus asked the afflicted man at the Pool of Bethesda. He had been sick for 38 years. He came to the pool because it was commonly known that at certain times the waters of the pool were stirred by an angel. It was said that anyone entering the waters after they were stirred by the angel would be healed.
One wonders why the friends of the man did not stick around to put him in the water after the angel’s visitation. For one reason or another, that we might imagine, no one put him in the pool and by his own admission he was not fast enough to get into the pool after the stirring. We can also wonder if the man ever requested that someone put him in. We may never know.
Or could it be that he was comfortable in his sickness? Perhaps he enjoyed the attention that he received by being carried to the pool each day. Perhaps he enjoyed the company of others in similar condition. Perhaps he enjoyed his sickness. We can only imagine.
When Jesus came to the pool he went straight to the man. Jesus didn’t have to assume anything about the man. He already knew. His question cut right to the heart of the problem – “Do you want to be healed? You would have expected the man to reply with a “yes” or “no”. He didn’t., rather he made an excuse, “I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred. Did he not get into the water or was he not put into the water because he didn’t really want to be healed.
The solution to many of our problems depends upon our will. Do we want to be healed? Do we want to be forgiven? Do we want to forgive? Do we want to give up a grudge? Do you want to be rid of a prejudice, a jealousy, or hatred or racial bias? Do we want peace? The list goes on!
Jesus could not heal the man until he was willing to allow it. Jesus cannot change us or forgive us or even save us until we recognize our need and until we are willing to yield to Him. Whatever our sin or our problem, unless we are willing to be changed or to be made whole, healing can never take place. The question that Jesus asked the afflicted man is both profound and powerful? Do we know our need? Do we recognize our faults? Do we want to be healed? Great changes including transformation of our lives can only come if we really want it.
In His Love, Charles