The One Year® Chronological Bible, NKJV (Tyndale, 2013), October 1
The healing of a man who has been lame and dependent on others for thirty-eight years will require a new way of living; therefore, Jesus’ question to the lame man lying at the Bethesda pool, “Do you want to be made well?” (Jn. 5:6), requires a thoughtful response. At first blush, the answer seems obvious—“Of course!”—however, consideration must be given as to how healing will change life more than physically.
It will change the man’s entire way of life:
- It will require involvement – He can no longer hang out with his friends at the pool of Bethesada.
- It will require assuming responsibility – He can no longer lay up all day and expect anyone to give him a hand. Laziness cannot replace lameness.
- It will require hard work – He will be expected to work for the first time in his life and become a contributor to society instead of a taker from society.
- It will require humility – He will have to start at the bottom and learn a trade or skill.
- It will require relationship adjustments – Relationship dynamics will change and will offer new challenges. The family members who have “done for him” for years will expect him to do for them.
In a nutshell, healing of body will require change in every area of this man’s life. Healing will demand relinquishing an old way of life and embracing a new way of life. With healing will come expectations! Simple question. Not a simple answer.
Similarly, coming to Christ for salvation completely changes a person’s life.
Expectations that accompany surrender to Christ:
- Integrity in the work place – Christ-followers who are lazy, late, and complaining defame the name of Christ. Those in the workplace notice!
- Responsibility in the home – Christian wives who nag, overspend, and are negligent in personal and home care, and Christian husbands who are selfish, abusive (verbally and physically), angry and uninvolved fail to reflect Christ. Those in the home notice!
- Morality within relationships – Christ-followers who are addicted to pornography, promiscuous, and commit adultery demean Christ’s temple on earth and misrepresent Him to the world. Those in the world notice!
So, saying “Yes!” to “Do you want to be made well?” demands much more than change in one’s physical state. It is a question crafted to create contemplation—to consider the costs involved. Saying “Yes!” to healing changes everything!
Questions from today’s chronological Bible reading (Jn. 5; Mk. 2:23-28; 3:1-6; Mt. 12:1-21; Lk. 6:1-11):
What attitude among the Jews surfaces in response to Jesus’ activity on the Sabbath and teaching regarding sonship?
What Old Testament story does Jesus use to support his Sabbath activity? What does their anger reveal about confrontation with truth?