“As Jesus and His disciples were leaving Jericho, a large crowd followed Him. Two blind men were sitting by the roadside, and when they heard that Jesus was going by, they shouted, ‘Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!’ The crowd rebuked them and told them to be quiet, but they shouted all the louder, ‘Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us! Jesus stopped and called them. ‘What do you want me to do for you?’ He asked. ‘Lord,’ they answered, ‘we want our sight,’ Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they received their sight and followed Him.” Matthew 20:29-34
In the gospel of Mark we are told the name of one of the two blind men—Bartimaeus. (Mark 10:46) Outside of this mention of the name of one of the two men little is known about the episode yet it was an important enough event to be included in the Gospels.
It was not unusual to find two people with disabilities together because they could help each other as well as provide companionship in an age where people with disabilities were often considered as outcasts. What is unusual is that without seeing Jesus they cried out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!” In the account given in Mark 10 Jesus calls Bartimaeus over (there is no mention of the other man in that account) and asked him “What do you want me to do for you?” (Mark 10 49-51)
In Marks account the response to the blind man’s request for healing is, “Go, your way, your faith has made you well, and immediately he received his sight and followed Him on the way.” (v. 52) It is interesting in the Gospel of Matthew there is no mention of faith on the part of either of the two blind men and yet Jesus healed them.
Also the two accounts of the healing differ in how the healing took place. In Mark Jesus simply spoke but in Matthew Jesus touched their eyes. Both accounts agree however on the essential result and that is the men received their sight and followed Jesus.
You and I are also spiritually blind until Jesus should open up our eyes by both calling us and touching us. It is only through the experience of feeling the touch of Jesus in our personal lives that we can ever hope to have our eyes open to His compassion and love, and then follow Him.
What do we want from God would be a good question to ask ourselves? These two blind men wanted their sight but they received so much more. They received the compassion and love of the God of the Universe as well as their sight.
In the gospel of Luke when the man was lowered through the roof of the house where Jesus was staying so that Jesus could heal him and give him the ability to walk again he also received more than he could ever of dreamed. “And when He saw their faith He said, “Man, your sins are forgiven you,” Luke 5:20.
As Christians we need to be ever on the lookout to notice when Jesus passes by. We also shouldn’t be afraid to call out to Him in our weakness and our need. It is sad to hear brothers and sisters say that they don’t talk to Jesus about hurts and discouragements in their lives because they think their problems are too small or insignificant for Jesus to care about. Let me assure you, Jesus cares about every aspect of your life from the largest problem to the smallest detail.
And just like the healing He brought to Bartimaeus and his friend, Jesus brings healing and restoration when we call out to Him. It is interesting that throughout the gospels the emphasis is upon spiritual healing followed by physical healing. What is of the utmost importance to Jesus is that we have put our faith and trust in His saving power to deliver us from sin, Satan and death. Remember in the story we just quoted in Luke Jesus said to the religious leaders, “Why do you question in your hearts? Which is easier, to say, ‘ Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘rise and walk?’” Luke 5: 22-23
Some of you are alone in your faith with no family support or friends to encourage you. You long for a spiritual healing in your family or for God to bring you a Christian friend to hold you up. The aspect of the story I love the most about the two blind men is that Jesus has compassion on them. Please, listen closely to what I’m saying, God loves you unconditionally and He has a world of compassion for you. No one can snatch you out of God’s hand, but we must never give up. I know it is easy to feel rejected and lonely when no one you love cares about your spiritual wellbeing.
My mother became a Christian at the age of 14 and died at the age of 92. In all those years she went to church alone and lived as a Christian regardless of how the rest of the family was living. She longed to be invited to people’s homes after church or have fellowship with other Christians, but week after week she went home alone while she watched others enjoy fellowship without her. But, my mom never threw in the towel and if it hadn’t been for her faithfulness you wouldn’t be reading this blog today.
The key to living with full sight is to never give up regardless of how difficult your journey, because Jesus never passes you by. He always hears your cry and responds in compassion. You are destined for heaven and don’t allow anyone to snatch that from you. Don’t let differences, hurts, and anger break your relationship with God. God holds no grudges so why should we?
Let God touch you that you may have sight and follow Him. If husbands, wives, friends or neighbors oppose us so be it, still we follow. By the way have you ever wondered where Jesus was going when He passed by the two blind men? He was on the road to Jerusalem and the cross. As He contemplated His approaching torture and death He had time for two blind outcasts. He gave them sight that day but soon after He would give them eternal life through His death and resurrection.
God give us eyes to see our own weakness
and stubbornness in resisting you.
Take the blinders off our hatred, anger,
and frustrations and let us accept your love
for us and others. Make us whole. Amen.
* The persecution of Christians has not stopped. If anything it’s increased. The main stream media doesn’t talk about it much anymore but that doesn’t mean it’s not happening. Pray and stay informed and inform others. Please take the time to read some of their stories at http://thebeggardanced.com/nine-oclock-club/ there is much more on the internet…