The bible tells us the purpose of the signs from Jesus. Here in John 20:31 we are told, “But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”
In verse 2. It says, “Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate a pool, which in Aramaic is called Bethesda and which is surrounded by five covered colonnades.” The Sheep Gate in Aramaic is called “Bethesda”, which means “House of mercy.” From now on we will see what happened in this pool.
Let us read verse 3. It says, “Here a great number of disabled people used to lie--the blind, the lame, the paralyzed.” In this passage we wonder who the blind, the lame, and the paralyzed are? We know that these people represent the many neglected and ignored people in this world.
Let us read John 5:3. It says, “One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years.” This man in this passage from John’s Gospel had been sick for 38 years. He must have really suffered without hope for all these years. However a message of hope was given to him. The man was lame, so he couldn’t get into the pool by himself. He needed someone to take him. But there was no one to help this sick man to get into the pool. He was troubled and in despair. However, he was given hope. Because Jesus came to the man.
Let us look at verse 6. It says, “When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, "Do you want to get well?"
Verse 7 says, "Sir," the invalid replied, "I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me."
Let us look at verse 8. It says, “Then Jesus said to him, "Get up! Pick up your mat and walk." We understand what this means. However, this sick man might not have understood. Because he was not able to walk. Who is Jesus? What does Jesus mean to the man and to us? Jesus is our Lord and Savior. Nothing is impossible with Jesus. He could do, can do, and will be able to do these things for his people. The man had been sick for 38 years. He must have been in despair. Because he said, there was no one who took him into the pool. For this man, Jesus came and said, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” What happened to this sick man? He stood up and walked. This is a miracle. Nothing is impossible with Jesus.
Jesus says in John 16:33, “In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” This means that believers of Christ might have troubles in this world, but we disciples of Jesus can overcome our troubles, because our Lord Jesus Christ overcame.
Let us go back to the passage from John. There were many who were in despair near the pool of Bethesda. Among those, there was the sick man who had been lame for 38 years. One day, he hears that he would be healed once he got into the pool of Bethesda when it was stirred by the angel. Sadly there was no one, who took him into the pool. For that man, Jesus came there and healed him.
In this passage, the sign guides people to the right place. The sign helps them to meet JESUS. Once we met Jesus, we are healed and transformed. These signs continue to help us to live and work for Jesus.
Today our Lord talks and helps each one of us. We need to see Jesus. We need to meet him. We need to live and work for him here on earth. I continue to pray for each one of you that our Lord Jesus will be with you, guide you, and bless you at all times.
Rev Dr Je Cheol Cook