Jesus saw him lying there,
and knew that he had already been a long time in
John 5:6 is a Bible verse in the New Testament where a lame man comes face-to-face with the truth in Jesus.
We live in a very competitive world. We strive for the best and most honored positions.
We desire a place of honor and authority—both during our younger years in school among our peers and throughout our adult years in our professions among our co-workers.
We don’t like to lose; we don’t like to be overlooked, and we certainly don’t want to be last in anything—in comparison to someone else, or in line at the grocery store.
Many of us have a deep-seated fear of loss because it can be (or has been) a place of embarrassment, hurt and disappointment. We have all experienced something in our past where we were in a position of loss or dishonor at some point.
Maybe we were the youngest in the group of neighborhood kids playing softball or basketball, and we always got picked last.
Maybe we didn’t make the cheerleading team, or the sports team or get accepted to the university we so desperately wanted to be a part of. Maybe we got passed up for the promotion at work, or we didn’t get the dream job we hoped for.
To absorb the value of this Bible verse, let’s look at the whole story in John 5:2-9 (NASB), where the fear of loss is evident.
“Now there is in Jerusalem by the sheep gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew Bethesda, having five porticoes. In these lay a multitude of those who were sick, blind, lame, and withered, waiting for the moving of the waters; for an angel of the Lord went down at certain seasons into the pool and stirred up the water; whoever then first, after the stirring up of the water, stepped in was made well from whatever disease with which he was afflicted.
A man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he had already been a long time in that condition, He said to him, “Do you wish to get 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, “Get up, pick up your pallet and walk.” Immediately the man became well, and picked up his pallet and began to walk.”
The man had been sick for 38 years, hoping to get to the pool before anyone else did. Year after year he competed with the others to get down to the pool first, but he lost every year—38 times.
Each year, he waited for a mere chance to get to the pool first, but he was disappointed every time. It had to seem so unfair.
I’m sure you can relate to the pain of disappointment and maybe even the constant stress of competing. Someone else got there before you did. They beat you. There was only one position of healing, or honor, and you didn’t get it.
To make matters worse, maybe it was your biggest enemy, or even your best friend who got the position instead.
Isn’t it interesting that the man in John 5:6 didn’t simply answer Jesus’ question with an immediate, “Yes, I want to be well!” Instead, he went into an explanation of why he wasn’t well and how he always lost.
He didn’t realize Who he was talking to. He addressed Jesus as “sir”.
It’s the same with you and me. Even though we’re saved—living with the power of the living God inside us—we live like we’re beat. We don’t realize what we’ve got a hold of.
Instead of accessing the power within us through faith, we tell God (and others) about why we’re not well and how we lost.
Well, now it’s time to WAKE UP!
Tap into the power of Christ in you! Develop and use your faith! Don’t walk through this life limp and lame, when you’ve got access to the Holy Spirit within you!
Look at the story in John again. Jesus fulfilled the man’s need and desire, but look at what else He did that through faith we can have also.
Jesus took away the need for the man to even go down to the pool. He took away the need to compete. Let that sink in for a moment.
The race to the pool wasn’t necessary when Jesus Himself was present.
Why are you striving for something Jesus has already won for you? You see, the man didn’t need to win; he needed Jesus.
It is the same with you and me. Don’t wait 38 years for Jesus to show up.
He already has!
He is present here and now, and what He offers you is far greater than any victory you could ever experience by competing with others to win on your own. Discover the promises of God and access them through faith.
Study the Bible verses of John 5:6, and tap into the power of Christ within you to live the vibrant, abundant life Jesus died to give you.
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