Does the Bible ever seem foreign? Does it ever feel as though the stories are outdated and no longer applicable? At times, I find myself thinking how incredible it must have been - for those “early Christians” - to live in an era when Jesus walked our very streets and spoke our very words.
It becomes so effortless to classify these biblical conversations as historical. We hardly have paralytics littering on our sidewalks. We do not have huge crowds that follow prophets on foot. What could possibly be taken from these historic accounts of people and Jesus Christ?
John 5:6-8 tells of one such account:
“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.” – NIV
Well, for starters, this passage teaches me that Jesus responds to hearts in need. This passage teaches me that He sees us. Even in a huge a crowd, when others walk by us, Jesus will see us.
This passage teaches me that we must admit our need to the King. Even though the condition of the invalid was clear, Jesus asks, “Do you want to get well?” We may think that our pain is more than obvious, but God will not do what He is not asked to do.
Finally, this passage teaches me that Jesus calls us to take action. He calls us to “Get up!” This man would have missed his miracle, if he had not had the faith to move.
Has Jesus healed our pain? Has Jesus seen us?
I doubt this man ever forgot his encounter with the King, have we?