1 Some time later, Jesus went up to Jerusalem for one of the Jewish festivals. 2 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. 3 Here a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed. 4 5 One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. 6 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?” 7 “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.” 8 Then Jesus said to him, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” 9 At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked. The day on which this took place was a Sabbath, 10 and so the Jewish leaders said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath; the law forbids you to carry your mat.” 11 But he replied, “The man who made me well said to me, ‘Pick up your mat and walk.’ ” 12 So they asked him, “Who is this fellow who told you to pick it up and walk?” 13 The man who was healed had no idea who it was, for Jesus had slipped away into the crowd that was there. 14 Later Jesus found him at the temple and said to him, “See, you are well again. Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you.” 15 The man went away and told the Jewish leaders that it was Jesus who had made him well.
Jesus miraculously heals a man who had been paralyzed for thirty-eight years by telling him to, “Stand up, pick up your mat and walk.” At the time the man did not realize it was Jesus who healed him, this understanding came later when in the temple Jesus declared the man well and told him to stop sinning. The Jewish leaders were upset as the man carried his mat on the Sabbath thereby breaking Jewish law.
This man had been hoping and waiting to be healed for 38 years! That is such a long time to be paralyzed and not going anywhere in life. Interestingly Jesus approach to this man’s healing was action! Note the verbs or doing words he uses; stand up, pick up and finally walk. This passage of Scripture firstly encourages me to pray and cry out to God for healing. It equally encourages me to respond with action when I hear His voice telling me what to do for a better life. How is God telling you to honour your body as the temple of God? Perhaps it is to reduce stress, eat more healthily or exercise more? One thing for me was simply to drink more water each day! If you are new to this space, why not ask God what you can do to honour your body as his temple as healthy living itself promotes and sustains healing.
Dear Lord, thank you that you are the ultimate healer! Show me how to honour and respect you with the body you have given me to do life in. Amen
Written by Ps. Ainslie Woods