The Great Physician

Part Two: 38 Years?

Last week we left the crippled man at the Pool of Bethesda where he had waited 38 years for a healing and the stirring of the water [1]. It is the same place where Jesus had healed the man in seconds. All it took for the man’s healing was his trust and obedience to Christ’s command to, “. . .Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.

Many people today metaphorically sit at the Pool of Bethesda waiting for their healing and the stirring of the water. Why are so many people quick to believe a doctor, yet not the spoken words of Christ [2]? We eluded somewhat to this answer in part one of The Great Physician by saying that more times than not, we think in terms of the physical realm – or the flesh, as did the invalid in John chapter five.

[John 5:7] The impotent man answered him, Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me [KJV].

Man is still not accustomed to responding spiritually. The Bible contains many accounts of physical and power manifestations in the natural. This is how God gets our attention like He did for Moses with the burning bush [3], for the Apostles at Pentecost with the cloven tongues of fire [4]. He got the attention of the invalid at the pool by healing him [5], and Jesus definitely got the attention of Mary Magdalene, Mary, Cleopas and his companion, the Apostles (minus Judas Iscariot), Simon, and others when He returned after His death just before His ascention [6].

So then, what did Jesus actually mean when he asked the man at the pool, “. . .Wilt thou be made whole?” The NIV says, “. . .Do you want to get well?” For the reader today, let’s ask Jesus’s question in a different way, “Do you want to get rid of your guilt, shame, regret, strife, anger, jealousy, or a myriad of other burdens and sins? Do you want a new life, spiritually clean and restored to God? Do you want me to heal you not only physically, but emotionally and spiritually as well?

The man at the pool was not only a picture of sinful man, but of Christ’s undying grace, for without Christ, man is lost and separated from God [7]. Like John 14:6 declares, “. . .no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” What Jesus was offering the man at the Pool of Bethesda was salvation, a new life in Christ [8]. The man had waited for 38 years for a healing and Jesus healed him in seconds.

Question? “How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things [9]!

Well brothers and sisters, Christ has sent us all. One of the last things that the Lord commanded before He ascended to heaven was this: “. . .Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature [10]. And as the Lord said in verse 15, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! The Good news is not for personal entertainment, but commanded and mandated to share with every living creature.



[1] All new translations omit v4 of JOHN 5 citing that it was a superstition of the times and that the Bible didn’t really teach this. However, since all new translations are translations of the Alexandria Bible, I find that they should not have omitted this verse. This is my reason: The Alexandria Bible is a dynamic equivalency interpretation which means we need to trust the interpreter. Whereas the translators interpreted the Geneva and the KJV Bibles with formal equivalency, which is a word for word translation from the Antioch Bible. I find that this is a more accurate way of translation. “Word for word” means just that, “word for word.” They could have made a note stating the belief of stirring water as superstitous. (However, I do not have any vegetable soup after my name. 🙂 )
[2] This could very well be friends, family, or pastors. Although there is nothing wrong with seeking these folks, our first focus should be on Christ. The Bible says to seek ye first the kingdom of God and He add all other things unto you. Seek Christ first in all that we do and think. If we don’t seek Him for the little things, we will not seek Him for the big things. Why seek the man of God? Instead, seek the God of man.
[3] Exodus 3:2-4
[4] Acts 2:1-4
[5] John 5:2-9 verse 8
[6] He appeared to Mary Magdalene; Mary, mother of James and Joses; 11 of the Apostles. (He did not appear to Judas Iscariot); Cleopas and his companion on the road to Emmaus in Luke 24:18, just to name a few.
[7] John 14:6
[8] 2 Corinthian 5:17
[9] Romans 10:14, 15
[10] Mark 16:15 (Mark 16:15-19 full mandate.)

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