Siloám Part 2: The Sent One

2 Corinthians 3:18
“18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.”

As you saw in part 1, “Siloám,” means, “Sent One.”  There is great purpose in the meaning of its name but also in the history of this pool.
Construction Of Siloám.
Siloám was a rock-cut pool on the southern slope of the City of David, the original site of Jerusalem.  It was located outside the walls of the Old City to the southeast and was fed by the waters of the Gihon Spring, carried there by two aqueducts.
It was constructed to provide a water supply inside the Jerusalem to protect it from a siege.  It was fed by the newly constructed Siloam tunnel.
Prior to this, the Gihon Spring had emptied in a large open basin at its source, before being conveyed to the City by an aqueduct. This basin is sometimes known as the Upper Pool (2 Kings 18:17, Isaiah 7:3).  But the aqueduct was very vulnerable to attackers.  So, under threat from the Assyrian king Sennacherib, Hezekiah sealed up the old outlet of the Gihon Spring and the Upper Pool, and built the underground Siloam tunnel in place of the aqueduct.
This pool (obviously) was in use during the time of Jesus.  Some scholars, influenced by Jesus commanding the blind man to wash in the pool, suggest that it was probably used as a mikveh, or baptismal.
No Degrees Of Dead.
There are no degrees of dead. Dead is dead. Outside of Christ, we are all equally dead in trespasses and sins, spiritually speaking. Every single one of us needs a Savior!  As the scriptures say, “There is NONE GOOD; no not one.”
This fact is clearly demonstrated in the three resurrection miracles recorded for us in the Gospel of John. We all need to be washed of our sins in the “Pool” of the Sent One. Then, once we are saved, we wash daily with the water of the word to get the dust of this life off our feet.
Three Resurrection Miracles.
Jesus raised Jairus’ 12-year-old daughter, the widow of Nain’s son, and Lazarus.
Jairus’ daughter had been dead for probably less than an hour, and the widow’s son for 12 hours or so.  But Lazarus was was dead FOUR DAYS!
The first two miracles the scribes and Pharisees could possibly dismiss or explain away.  They were always looking for a way to discredit Jesus.  Perhaps these two had simply unconscious.  But Lazarus resurrection they could not deny.
Understanding this fact helps explain what Jesus meant after a terrible tragedy occurred.  The Tower of Siloám collapsed, killing many people, which we will soon discuss.
We All Equally Need A Savior.
Romans 3:23 says that “all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” These three miracles perfectly drive home the message that we are all EQUALLY wicked sinners.
As limited, mortal beings, we like to think some people are more evil than others,  like the Hitlers or Sadam Houseins of the world, but God doesn’t see it that way.  To Him, DEAD IS DEAD.  No one is any more or less DEAD than any other and every one needs the same exact thing:  A SAVIOR!
Different Degrees Of Sin.
Though we are equally all sinners, there actually are definite degrees of sin.  Jesus Himself said so.  When He was delivered to the Roman magistrate, He told Pontius Pilate  “He who delivered Me to you has the GREATER sin.”  
There are also different degrees of punishment and condemnation according to Matthew 23:14.
Though the three people above who were raised back to life were all equally dead, they had been dead for different lengths of time, depicting degrees of sin.  
Why Jesus Came.

Jesus came to seek and save those who were lost.  He didn’t come to make bad people good; HE CAME TO MAKE DEAD PEOPLE LIVE.  It is only human to think that there is some good in us somewhere, but that’s just our tendency toward self-righteousness.  The scriptures say point blank that “In our flesh dwells no good thing.” Romans 7:18.

Jesus’ Biggest Problem.

Self righteousness was the biggest problem Jesus encountered when He walked this earth.  The Pharisees, who were really full of themselves, came to Him time and again about various petty little issues concerning the law.  But they didn’t really want answers to their questions; they just wanted to trap Him, like the woman “Caught in the act” of adultery.  What an obvious set-up that was.  You notice that the man was not also dragged before Jesus?  Last time I looked, adultery takes two. (She was probably sleeping with one of them. 🤨)

(For more on that topic, you may follow the link below:

Pharisees’ Point Of View.
Why were the Pharisees so angry and jealous? Here’s an idea of how things looked from their point of view:
For 1500 years, the Jewish people had been under the law of Moses.  Read through Leviticus sometime.  There are lots of laws regarding how to treat the diseased and the unclean, what food was clean, what was unclean, explicit details about offering sacrifices that would be acceptable to God, etc., etc.  Including the big Ten, there are 613 laws in all!
For all those years, the priests were the central figures.  Everyone had to come to the them when they were sick to be diagnosed and treated of diseases or pronounced either clean or unclean according to Levitical law. They were the center of attention.
Now and then people were healed, though none from any really debilitating diseases like leprosy.  The only recorded healing of this dreaded disease was Naaman who wasn’t even a Jew.  In fact, he was the commander-in-chief of their arch enemies, the Syrians.  You and I would call them , “The ultimate bad guys!”
Well anyway, it isn’t very hard to imagine that, after a while, the priests began to get pretty puffed up with the perception of their own importance, is it?
Countless Healings.
Fast forward now to Jesus’ day.  Everywhere He went, He healed ALL who were sick or oppressed of the devil. That amounts to COUNTLESS THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE!  Not all are recorded, however.  Not even close. The Holy Spirit recorded only a handful of them in the gospels, 33 to be exact, to teach us about Jesus.  This can give the mistaken impression those were the only miracles He did…..until you come across this little verse below from John’s gospel:
“And there are also MANY other things that Jesus did, which if they were written one by one, I suppose that EVEN THE WORLD ITSELF COULD NOT CONTAIN THE BOOKS THAT WOULD BE WRITTEN. Amen.
John 21:25
WOW!  What an awesome statement!
Jesus Healed ALL Who Came To Him.
So picture this:  A sea of needy people of all descriptions; diseased, blind, deaf, lame, demon-possessed, you name it.  Picture them lined up on both sides of the road, several rows deep perhaps, along whichever way Jesus would pass, each one hoping for a word, a look, or a touch from The Master.
Ah, but behind Him there was a sea of excited people jumping, screaming, crying, shouting and all PRAISING GOD!  They thronged the road behind Him because JESUS HEALED THEM ALL!
Priest’s Jealousy.
You know what He told them to do, right? Exactly what the law required them to do:  Go and see the priest to be pronounced clean!
Where previously there had been virtually no one healed, NOW THEY WAS A CONSTANT STREAM OF THEM!  WERE INUNDATED! Jealous?  You bet they were!
(The paralytic and his friends.)
Healing Of The Paralytic.
Jesus created such a stir that a whole bunch of these hypocrites followed Him to a home in Capernaum to see Him for themselves.  The house was so full, in fact, that the friends of the paralytic, who actually needed to see Jesus, had to bring him up on the roof, tear open a hole, and lower him down.  It was the only way they could get him in front of Jesus!
The righteousness of the Pharisees was based on the “Works of the law.”  It still is.  They preach, “Do good, get good, do bad, get bad,” thinking they are preaching the gospel.  THEY ARE NOT.
God knows we can’t not keep the law.  It wasn’t given for us to try and keep in the first place.  It was designed to expose our sinfulness and OUR DESPERATE NEED FOR A SAVIOR!  That it does VERY WELL.
Remember, the strength of sin the THE LAW.  Those who teach morality need to remember that, not that morality isn’t important mind you.
(Only Jesus can perfectly keep the Law.)

Jesus is the only One Who can–AND DID–keep it perfectly in thought, word and deed.  “Thy word have I hid in my heart,” is referring to Jesus.  Remember where God told Moses to put the the tablets of stone?  Inside the Ark.  And what, or more to the point, “Who,” is the Ark?  It’s Jesus!  The Law was put inside Jesus!

Because of His perfect obedience and His payment in full on the cross, His righteousness is now credited to us as our own when we accept Him as Savior.  We are now IN CHRIST.  He fulfilled it for us: We benefit!

The Arrogance Of The Pharisees.

In Luke 13, some Pharisees…..well, it was probably the Pharisees, though it isn’t specified…..told Jesus that Pilate had mingled the blood of some Galileans with their own sacrifices.  They were hinting, more like implying, that maybe those who were slaughtered were “Greater sinners” because of the kind of death they died.

Back then, you see, most Jewish people despised the Galileans.  They went out of their way to avoid contact with them.  They were considered uneducated in Holy Writ, had either “mixed (Gentile) blood” or were just plain Gentiles and therefore suspect.  In fact, if Jews from Jerusalem had to travel to the Galilee region, they gave Samaria a wide berth.  Check the map below.

(Route around Samaria.)
Tragedy At Siloam.

Luke 13:2

“…..Jesus answered and said to them, “Do you suppose that these Galileans were worse sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered such things? 3 I tell you, no; but unless you repent *{metanoia} you will all **LIKEWISE PERISH….”

Then Jesus reminds them of the incident in Jerusalem where 18 people were killed when a tower fell on them:

“…….. 4 Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloám fell and killed them, do you think that they were worse sinners than all other men who dwelt in Jerusalem? 5 I tell you, no; but unless you repent *{metanoia} you will all **LIKEWISE PERISH.” {Note this for later}
*(METANOIA- Change your mind; believe that I, Jesus, came to save you.)

45AD8C17-9166-4D56-9437-392A9C943CF6(Collapse of the Tower of Siloám.)

…and, in fact, the ones who did not “Metanoia,” did indeed “LIKEWISE PERISH” when Tiberius Caesar destroyed the Temple in 70 AD.  There was left not one stone upon another.  Many people were crushed underneath the stones of the destroyed Temple, just like the people who died when the tower of Siloám collapsed.

Titus Flavius Josephus
The famous Jewish historian, Josephus, recorded that NOT ONE CHRISTIAN DIED.  They had listened to what Jesus said, remembered His warning, and heeded it, which is recorded in Luke 21:20-22.  All believers in Y’Shua fled to Petra, in Jordan!

Petra In Jordan.

The Fig Tree.

Then Jesus proceeded to tell them the following parable of the vineyard with the barren fig tree.

6 “He(Jesus) also spoke this parable: “A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none. 7 Then he said to the keeper of his vineyard, ‘Look, for three years I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and find none. Cut it down; why does it use up the ground?’ 8 But he answered and said to him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and fertilize it. 9 And if it bears fruit, well. But if not, after that you can cut it down.’

This “certain man” is The Father. God, The Father, has a vineyard; and the “keeper” is Jesus.  What are vineyards full of? Grapes.  Grapes are for blessing. Wine, which is made from grapes, typifies not only God’s love, but being intoxicated with it.

His vineyard, a type of the Church, somehow has a fig tree planted in the middle of it. The word in the Greek for planted is in the passive voice, meaning He didn’t plant it; someone else did by stealth. 
First Mention Of Figs.
There is a principle, or “Law,” if you will, of “First Mention,” in studying scripture which states that the very first time any important word is mentioned in the Bible, scripture gives that word its most complete, and accurate, meaning to not only serve as a “key” in understanding the word’s Biblical concept, but to also provide a foundation for its
fuller development in later parts of the Bible.
The first time figs are mentioned, Adam and Eve are sewing fig leaves together to cover their nakedness.  This is a portrayal of righteousness by works; i.e. “Self-righteousness.”
The Holy Spirit is painting a picture of the LAW COMING INTO THE CHURCH BY THE SIDE, BY STEALTH, getting mixed up with grace:  MIXTURE.

Jesus Found No Fruit.

You see, God never meant for us to live according to our own righteousness, which is nothing more than filthy rags (soiled sanitary napkins in today’s jargon.  YUK!)

Jesus came to His own people seeking fruit on the fig tree, Israel.  He looked and looked for three years and wanted to let it alone for one more year. He would dig around it and fertilize it by dumping the dung of righteousness by works on it, hoping it would finally bear fruit. If, after all that, there was still no fruit, it would be cut down.
Sadly, it did not produce much fruit at all.  There weren’t enough people willing to let go of their self-righteous works to be used as dung for the whole tree.

It’s the same deal today.  We need to teach people to turn from works of self-righteousness and teach them the truth about their righteousness in Christ APART FROM WORKS. They need to give up their fruitless introspection…..their filthy-rags righteousness as Paul calls it.

Put away your dressing room mirror and look at Jesus.  It’s the only way true transformation can occur.

We are transformed by beholding JESUS’ GLORY….. not our gory; and we all are equally in need of a Savior, because there are no degrees of dead. We all equally need Jesus, our Siloám,  The Sent One.

Please follow the link below to Part 3:

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