Do you really want to be healed?
Scripture reading – John 5:5-7. “Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be made well?” The sick man answered Him, “Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; but while I am coming, another steps down before me.”
Before we get into our story and other stories, let’s read these 2 texts. Together they will harmonize God’s initiative with our response in God’s work of healing and saving:
1) In Luke 19:10: Jesus explains His mission to the fault-finding critical Pharisees: “For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save which was lost.”
2) John 6:44: “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him…”
Jesus says that He is out seeking to save those that are lost (that’s all of us)
God the Father is at work as the Holy Spirit is drawing people to Christ. Scriptures in the OT prior to the flood point out that the Holy Spirit was “striving” with all human race (Genesis 6:3)
In the OT times God was “drawing” His people to Himself with love as this is the most effective way God draws people – Hosea 11:4: “I drew them with gentle cords, with bands of love…”
There is a convincing drawing power in God’s love and in His appeals He makes on human hearts. If not resisted it will lead us to seek and find help from the One who draws us. Before we realize our need and start seeking help, we are sought out by God.
Let’s read the whole story how Jesus heals the hopeless paralytic man – John 5:1-9
What do you think: Did this man desire to be healed?
Did he try what was humanly possible to get healed?
Why wasn’t he healed?
Did he do his maximum what he believed he needed to do in order to get healed? Yes!
Was he looking for healing in a right place?
What do you think? If he knew there was a right way to get healed, would he go for it?
Many today look for help in all the wrong places and in all the wrong ways, yet Christ who understands their plight eventually crosses their pathway…
Yet, people have a freedom of choice. Sadly, most won’t be benefited by what Christ offers (see Jesus’ sermon in His own town’s synagogue in
Comment on the story in
Let’s look at another story – Mark 2:3-5.11.12. “Then they came to Him, bringing a paralytic who was carried by four men. And when they could not come near Him because of the crowd, they uncovered the roof where He was. And when they had broken through, they let down the bed on which the paralytic was lying. When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven you.” I say to you, arise, take up your bed and go your way to your house. And immediately he arose, took up the bed and went out in the presence of them all…”
What do you think: Did this man desire healing?
Was he willing to let others help him to get healed?
Did he understand the cause problem of his sickness? What was the root case of his paralysis? Guilt for committed wrongs – this is why Jesus addressed the forgiveness issue first!
Let’s look at another story – Luke 8:43-48 “Now a woman, having a flow of blood for twelve years, who had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any, came from behind and touched the border of His garment. And immediately her flow of blood stopped. And Jesus said, “Who touched Me?” When all denied it, Peter and those with him said, “Master, the multitudes throng You and press You, and You say, ‘Who touched Me?’ But Jesus said, “Somebody touched Me for I perceived power going out from Me.” Now when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling; and falling down before Him, she declared to Him in the presence of all the people the reason she had touched Him and how she was healed immediately. And He said to her, “Daughter, be of good cheer; your faith has made you whole.”
What do you think: Did this woman desire healing?
Did she do all she could to get healed? Yes – 12 years of searching for cure and spending all her income to find the cure to her sickness.
Finally and at last, when everything else has failed she seeks God’s help through Jesus.
Aren’t we like that too? When everything else fails we may reluctantly consider going to God.
Aren’t most people ashamed of their problems and try to hide them from others?
Why are we ashamed to openly admit that we need God’s help and healing?
What are some common trends that run through the attitude of our 3 examples?
- they recognized and admitted their problems
- they wanted to be rid of their problems
- they believed that somewhere there was a help or solution to their problems
- they started to look for solutions to their problems
- they would not give up and were persistent to find help
- with the exception of the woman whose problem was very sensitive they weren’t playing some kind of hide and seek game
What was the result? They found and received the real help from the right Source. (Unfortunately much of today’s healing is either a fake or counterfeit miracles.)
Let’s look at some other cases of people that found help from Jesus (Only summarize each story):
- Leper cleansed (Matthew 8:2.3.)
- 10 lepers healed (Luke 17:12-19)
- Blind Bartimaeus loudly cries for healing (Mark 10:46-52)
- Centurion and his very sick servant (Matthew 8:5-13)
- Great multitudes come to Jesus with their problems, even bringing their loved ones and friends as recorded at least 4 times in the book of Matthew 12:15, 14:34-36, 15:30.31. and 19:1.2.)
Again, what do all these stories have in common?
People are hurting and they come to Jesus. Most of them openly, some privately even secretly. Yet they come.
Others do not come, or cannot come. But Jesus who is led by the Spirit and is in tune with the Father is aware who and where they are and He goes out to meet them.
- Samaritan woman – John 4
- 2 demon possessed men – Matthew 8:28-33, Mark 5:1-17
Why am I sharing with you all these stories?
Aren’t we in the business in bringing healing of the whole person and sharing Jesus with others?
Are you discouraged at times because many who need it the most won’t seek it?
Many who have such a great need and perhaps even know that they need help won’t come to receive extended help.
Let’s use the example of the Depression Recovery Seminar we had run in Merritt.
How many people you and I talked to are depressed and admitted they are depressed and need help?
Some were even offered free sponsorship and all the help, but they won’t come where help is extended. Why?
- Fear of unknown, ashamed admitting their problems
- Fear of change
- Suspicion instilled by others
- Prejudice or pride
- They are not hurting enough yet
- Love of sinful habits they sense might be addressed
- Satan’s control and hold through addictive habits
- Maybe we are trying too hard and pray too little
- Their time has not come yet – not ready yet to make a change
- Need to hit the bottom first before desiring and reaching out for help
- Some will just choose misery over better life
How should we respond?
When Samaritan village rejected Jesus (Luke 9:51-56), disciples John and James wanted the fire and brimstone to fall on the Samaritans because their rejection hurt their pride.
What did Jesus say? Luke 9:55.56: “You don’t know what manner of spirit you are of. For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives but to save them. And they went to another village.”
There’s always another place another person to work with. Besides, rejection of our best intentions by others may be a test of our level of love or lack of it.
May we like Jesus do our part in extending help to others and leave the results with Him.
Our part is to get in tune with the Lord, be filled with and led by His Spirit and minister to those whose hearts the Holy Spirit has touched and prepared.