Wednesday, June 6, 2012
Do You Want to Be Healed?
John 5:2-6 (ESV)
2 Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, in Aramaic called Bethesda, which has five roofed colonnades. 3 In these lay a multitude of invalids—blind, lame, and paralyzed waiting for the moving of the water4 for an angel of the Lord went down at certain seasons into the pool, and stirred the water; whoever stepped in first after the stirring of the water was healed of whatever he had. 5 One man was there who had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. 6 When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had already been there a long time, he said to him, “Do you want to be healed?”
Isn't this an unusual question? The man is waiting for the stirring of the water. Jesus knows that he has been there a long time. What would the man be there for if he didn't want to be healed? Is it possible that some people get so caught up in the steps which should bring healing that they don't know what they would do if they were truly healed?
I have a Jack Russell Terrier. As a younger dog she would chase any animal that had the misfortune of entering our yard. I noticed that she chased with veracity until she got so close that she might catch her prey. I think she enjoyed the chase but didn't know what to do if she was ever successful.
Some people want to be healed in theory but not in practice. They will come to healing services and seem to desire healing but have no plans what they will do if they are healed. They like the chase but don't know what to do if they ever caught healing. They may even like the attention their illness provides. Healing means giving up the sickness handicap. It means going to work, helping others and filling your time with healthy things.
I don't know if every ill person knows this. They might not realize what they when they are healthy. This man's time was filled with waiting and trying to get into the water. Others' time may be filled with chemotherapy, radiation, dialysis, psychotherapy or any other treatments. And these treatments may be the hand of God touching them for healing. God also uses treatments like these to heal.
But what happens when you no longer have to go for treatments after you have done so for so long? You can get addicted to the treatments too.
So, I believe Jesus asked a very important question to a man who had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. Asking whether or not he wanted to be healed makes perfect sense.
How about you? Do you want to be healed? Healed from cancer, heart disease or mental illness which you may not have caused? Healed from drug, alcohol, pornography or sex addiction which you may have caused? Healed from an injury or a mental breakdown? Healed from a hurt so deep that you can neither sleep nor eat properly?
Do you really want to be healed? What would you do if you are healed?