“Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew, Bethesda, having five porches. In these lay a great multitude of sick people, blind, lame, paralyzed, waiting for the moving of the water. For an angel went down at a certain time into the pool and stirred up the water; then whoever stepped in first, after the stirring of the water, was made well of whatever disease he had.
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.”
Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your bed and walk.” And immediately the man was made well, took up his bed, and walked.
And that day was the Sabbath”
Imagine being sick for 38 years, being so near to your cure, and yet so far. This man was not only sick, he had no friends or family to help him into the pool.
Surrounding it were five porches. This man “happened” to be lying on one of them near the Sheep gate when the Greatest Shepherd of all the sheep came walking by. What is the Holy Spirit trying to show us? He is drawing pictures for us again!
Secrets In The Hebrew Language.
All names in the Bible have a meaning. When you study them, they add more depth, richness and understanding to the text. The name, “Bethesda,” tells a story of it’s own. Beth means “house;” Hesed means “grace,” in Hebrew. Bethesda is literally “The House of Grace.” t had Five porches, the number of Grace and a Visitor from heaven this day, The King of Grace: JESUS!
(Pool of Bethesda unearthed in early 1900’s)
This man had and infirmity for 38 years. We are not told what was wrong or how it happened. But along came Jesus one day and He “happened” to walk through Bethesda, with its healing pool and five porches, entering by the Sheep Gate. He asked the man if he wanted to be made well.
Kind of a strange question, don’t you think? He was obviously hanging out by the pool in hopes of getting into the water to be healed. You’ll notice, also, that this unnamed man with this unspecified infirmity didn’t answer Jesus’ question. Instead, he told Him about his situation.
Jesus didn’t ask again or wait for an answer. He simply gave him a command: “Rise, take up your bed and walk.” IMMEDIATELY the man was made well!
He didn’t need to wait for the angel to come by now and then to stir the waters. HE WAS WASHED BY THE WATER OF THE WORD OF GRACE PERSONIFIED: JESUS HIMSELF! He now walked away carrying that which had once carried him. He walked out of that place fully restored to life and health!
Faith Comes By Hearing.
Look at that! No request by the man for healing. No sermon about having faith for healing. No qualification given of any kind. Yet obviously the man heard Jesus’ words, believed and acted on them.
This incident, to the Pharisees’ chagrin, happened on the Sabbath.
One word of Grace from the Master of Grace Himself, Jesus, and we can walk with ease, physically and spiritually made whole again!
(God provides meat for the Israelites
in the wilderness)
38 Years Of Wandering?
Like everything in the New Testament, this man’s story is hidden in the Old Testament in a place you would not suspect. He is a picture of Israel wandering in the wilderness for 38 years.
“38 years,” you say? “I thought they wandered for 40.”
Well, yes, they were IN the wilderness for 40 years but their wandering, i.e. “lost-ness” to coin a phrase, was actually 38 years. When they refused to believe God at Kadesh Barnea, they were turned back from the Promisded Land and consigned to wander in the wilderness until that whole, unbelieving generation died off.
Two Rock Encounters.
In the first year and again in their 40th year, the Bible records for us two different “Rock” encounters. The first occurred when the children of Israel had no water, about 3 days after the bitter waters of Marah incident. There is far too much to go through that story here. So, for a complete article on that subject, follow the link below. You will also learn what happened to Moses and why no one can find his grave: He isn’t in it.
These two rock, encounters, the 38 years of wandering and the entering into the Promised Land, are also a timeline.
The two rock incidents depict Jesus’ first and second comings. The 38 years of wandering under judgment depicts the Jewish dispersion which came to an end in 1948, when Israel came back as a nation.
True to this timeline, many of our Jewish brethren in these last days are indeed being healed of their long-standing infirmity as they are washed by the water of the word of grace at the porches of the House of Grace by the Master Himself: JESUS.
But…..when He returns to earth to set things right and rule the earth with justice and righteousness, the entire nation of Israel will be saved in one day!
That’s our jesus! He is the true Pool of Bethesda.