Topic: Are You Sure You Want To Be Well?
(Self Assessment 184)
Background: One day Jesus went up to Jerusalem for one of the Jewish festivals. Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate, a pool, which in Aramaic is called Bethesda. Here a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed.
As Jesus the greatest physician of all time passes through, let’s follow Him closely to observe what He will do and say so that we may learn for our own walk with Him.
Text John 5: 5 – 14
5 One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. 6 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?”
7 “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.”
8 Then Jesus said to him, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” 9 At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked. The day on which this took place was a Sabbath, 10 and so the Jewish leaders said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath; the law forbids you to carry your mat.”
11 But he replied, “The man who made me well said to me, ‘Pick up your mat and walk.’ ” 12 So they asked him, “Who is this fellow who told you to pick it up and walk?”
13 The man who was healed had no idea who it was, for Jesus had slipped away into the crowd that was there. 14 Later Jesus found him at the temple and said to him, “See, you are well again. Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you.” Amen
1. Now the bible did not particularly state a reason, but in your opinion, why do you think Jesus chose to pass by the pool of Bethesda where all the sick are gathered? (Acts 10: 38)
2. Thirty-eight years is such a long time to be sick. Also, lying beside a healing pool for that long without the hope of a breakthrough could be devastating too. However, why do you think Jesus rather asked the man, “Do you want to get well?”; instead of going on directly to make him well?
3. Read verse 7 again. What are your personal thoughts about the invalid’s response to Jesus’s simple question? Especially where he emphasized how he had no one to help him and also how people seem to get ahead of him.
4. Verse 8 is very interesting. Jesus ministered healing to the man not by casting out a demon or by commanding healing. He spoke directly to the man’s psyche to empowered his will and he was able to rise up again unaided. What do you think happened there?
5. The Jewish leaders were always around to invoke one law or the other, just to challenge a deliverance or breakthrough for any of God’s children. It seems they did not necessarily care if a particular deliverance brought joy and liberty to another seed of Abraham:
a) Do we see this in our churches today too?
b) why do you think ‘religious folks’ struggle to understand that the human soul, with its deliverance and reconciliation to God, is more important to the Father than observing strict religious rules just to provide a legal framework for suppressing others who do not measure up?
6. How does Verse 11 confirm that the man’s sickness could have been partially psychological (if not fully)? In other words, how does the verse prove that his sickness may have had to do with the way he had thought and viewed the situation all these years?
7. Read verse 14 again:
a) In your opinion, what does the statement, “stop sinning or something worse may happen to you”, mean and also suggest?
b) Will you, therefore, agree that sin can lead to our not being completely whole physically and spiritually?
c) From your knowledge of scripture, how does sin contribute to our being tormented in the physical?
d) What valuable lesson does the verse teach against the theory that once a person is delivered, he/she remains always delivered?
8. What have you learnt from today’s Bible study?
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