After this there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.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. 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?” 7 The sick man answered him, “Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, and while I am going another steps down before me.” 8 Jesus said to him, “Get up, take up your bed, and walk.” 9 And at once the man was healed, and he took up his bed and walked.
Now that day was the Sabbath. 10 So the Jews said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath, and it is not lawful for you to take up your bed.” 11 But he answered them, “The man who healed me, that man said to me, ‘Take up your bed, and walk.’” 12 They asked him, “Who is the man who said to you, ‘Take up your bed and walk’?” 13 Now the man who had been healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had withdrawn, as there was a crowd in the place. 14 Afterward Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, “See, you are well! Sin no more, that nothing worse may happen to you.” 15 The man went away and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had healed him. John 5:1 - 15 (ESV)
We read in the Gospels that whenever Jesus heals someone, he not only physically heals but he also heals
spiritually. When Jesus meets with the lame man at the Pool called Bethesda, he has a conversation with
him about being made well, or whole again. The man makes the excuse that he can’t because he is too
far away from the pool. Jesus gives him an alternative to the pool by healing him by merely speaking.
Once the man was physically made well, from his infirmity, Jesus adds that the man must stop sinning.
This could imply his infirmity is related to his sin but is not definite and it does not mean that all
infirmities are related to sin. Jesus tells the man to stop sinning because he needs to go and pursue
holiness, so when the Day of Judgment comes nothing worse will happen. After this encounter the man
goes back to the Jews and tells them Jesus healed him.
There are many similarities of Jesus’ encounter with the lame man at the pool as with his conversation
with the Samaritan woman at the well. In both instances Jesus gives restoration to the individuals and
deals with sin. In this instance I have two observations we can apply in our everyday relationship with
 The Pool called Bethesda means the house of mercy or the house of outpouring. It was a well-known place of healing. It probably was not actually a magical pool that healed people but was most likely a place that traditionally people thought to have powers to heal.
Jeff has been in ministry for well over two decades. He currently serves as Campus Pastor at West Bradenton Baptist Southside Campus in Bradenton, Florida.
Jeff Has authored an Advent Devotional (The Advent of Jesus) and a devotional on the book of James (James: Where Faith and Life Meet). Both are available on Amazon.
He is married to Carrie and they have four children, Micaiah, Gabe, Simon, and Berea.
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