Being made whole
REV. RUBY ANN DARLING
Published: Oct 03, 2013
Wilt thou be made whole? – John 5:6
How many of us are in very unpleasant conditions and surroundings because we were not ready to give a definite answer to our existing situations?
Help was at hand, available and ready to be delivered, but we faltered, hesitated, procrastinated and opportunity passed us by. Even as you read, today can be your day for the greatest change to come in your life, if only you would be responsive and truthful. The question is, “Wilt thou be made whole?”
Unusual stories of marriage proposals are always media sensationalized – sky balloons, highway billboards, shopping malls, visits to work places and just about anything that will raise eyebrows. However, when the question “will you marry me?” is asked, many times before answering, hands cover faces, mouths drop open, tears flow before composure is gained to shout “yes”.
It was during an unspecified feast of the Jews that Jesus went to Jerusalem and while there he went to a pool by the sheep gate that was surrounded by five porches. Perhaps this could have been a double pool with porches and so designed that it could accommodate the many people who constantly stayed there because of the healing efficacies that the pool at Bethesda was known for. Bethesda meaning “house of mercy”, and reference to the “sheep gate” was because it was the common place for the marginalized, overlooked, despised, rejected and forsaken.
“In these lay a great multitude of impotent folk, of blind, halt, withered, waiting for the moving of the water. For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had.
“And a certain man was there, which had an infirmity 30 and eight years. When Jesus saw him lie and knew that he had been now a long time in that case, he saith unto him, ‘Wilt thou be made whole?’ 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.’
“Jesus saith unto him, ‘Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.’ And immediately the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked: and on the same day was the Sabbath.”
This healing of the impotent man at the pool of Bethesda is peculiar only to the Gospel of St. John. At a certain season an angel was dispatched from heaven to stir the “Olympic-sized” pool and the first one in was the only one to be healed. Wow! Can you imagine the movements at the edge of the pool?
Here was a man who for 38 years was struggling to get in the pool so that he could be healed. After 15 years, his determination and stickability never left him because his hope and faith was so well grounded that one year when the angel came with healing power in his wings, he would be healed.
What great faith. So astonished was he when Jesus asked him if he wanted to be healed, he replied with a whining pity party excuse. He did not have anyone there who could put him in the pool when the water was stirred. It could be that he was not willing to take personal responsibility either for his disability or his healing.
But Jesus, who is full of compassion, acted decisively on his behalf. He gave a command to the man to do what he could not do – to rise, take up his bed and walk. And he did. He did not question Jesus or his authority; as a matter of fact, he may not have known who Jesus was. In obedience to the command of Jesus the man acted; and he was healed. What the water could not do for him, Jesus did.
Yes, you have been suffering, lonely, financially distressed, misinterpreted, laughed at, scorned, put and let down, totally outcast, single parent, it does not matter the length of time, Jesus is asking you today “wilt thou be made whole”? It would be in your best interest if only you would not begin a long and sad story, but answer in the affirmative and begin life anew. Say yes!
Today begins the best day of the rest of your life.
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