In John chapter 5 it reads:

“1 After this there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew, Bethesda,  having five porches. In these lay a great multitude of sick people, blind, lame, paralyzed, waiting for the moving of the water. For an angel went down at a certain time into the pool and stirred up the water; then whoever stepped in first, after the stirring of the water, was made well of whatever disease he had. Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be made 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, “Rise, take up your bed and walk.” And immediately the man was made well, took up his bed, and walked.”

This was not Jesus’ only occasion of healing a paralytic (see Mark 2:1-12), but it is the place that is interesting Bethesda (House of Mercy) as that is exactly what Jesus showed. Personally I also find that the link between healing and Bethesda is kept alive by the fact (intentional or not) that one of America’s main Naval hospitals and National Institutes of Health are in a town of that name.

Jesus’ ability to show mercy is not just limited to physical healing, however.  He came to show the ultimate act of mercy: ” . . . While we were still sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:8).”

Lord, let today be a Bethesda day, as I am always in need of your mercy.

Friends, how about you?


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