Jesus was very strategic during His earthly ministry. He did not randomly or coincidentally do things – every word, every action was in total compliance to His Father’s will and served a distinct purpose.
For example, in John 5:1-18 Jesus performs another miracle; he heals a man who has been sick for 38 years. We might be quick to assume that Jesus had been simply going about His daily routine when yet another person approached Him with a request – similar to “we need more wine, Jesus” or “Jesus, I beg you to heal my son” – to which Jesus graciously responded.
But this situation is totally different. No request is made of Jesus. Quite the opposite: Jesus picks the day, the place, and the man with great intentionality. It was the Sabbath; the location was full of the blind, the lame, and the paralyzed; and the man Jesus selected (and, interestingly, the only one healed that day) could not even give a straight answer to the question, “Do you want to get well?”
There was an underlying drama playing out during the healing moment. Jesus was confronting the Jewish leadership and challenging them to see that they were even more blind, lame and paralyzed than the folks gathered at the pool. And like the man who was eventually healed, they, too, did not recognize or know Who it was that was standing right in front of them.
Oh, and Jesus was particular about the day. After 38 years, the man could have easily waited one more day to get healed. However, Jesus picked the Sabbath – and the outraged Jews tried all the harder to kill Him. The “official persecution” began that day.
In preparation for our time of study this Sunday, let me encourage you to read the following verses:
- John 5:1-18 – a good day for a paralyzed man; a bad day for the Jewish leaders
- John 5:36 – Jesus tells the Jewish leaders why they ought to know who He is
- Isaiah 35:3-6 – because He is doing all the things listed in this prophecy
- John 5: 39-40 – but alas, they are blind – and choose to remain so
While I really look forward to seeing y’all in church Sunday, my prayer for you this week is that you are finding meaningful connection in a Life Group, Bible study, choir – some smaller group of people with whom you can grow spiritually.
“Lord, if you want to use me in any way today, I am available.”
Love God – Love Neighbor – Lead Others