And at once the man was healed, and he took up his bed and walked. Now that day was the Sabbath. 10 So the Jews said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath, and it is not lawful for you to take up your bed.” 11 But he answered them, “The man who healed me, that man said to me, ‘Take up your bed, and walk.’” 12 They asked him, “Who is the man who said to you, ‘Take up your bed and walk’?” 13 Now the man who had been healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had withdrawn, as there was a crowd in the place. 14 Afterward Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, “See, you are well! Sin no more, that nothing worse may happen to you.” 15 The man went away and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had healed him. 16 And this was why the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because he was doing these things on the Sabbath. 17 But Jesus answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I am working.”

18 This was why the Jews were seeking all the more to kill him, because not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.

19 So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise. 20 For the Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing. And greater works than these will he show him, so that you may marvel. 21 For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whom he will.22 The Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son, 23 that all may honor the Son, just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him. 24 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life. (John 5:9-25) 

Last Week’s observations:

  1. Jesus knows everything about you
  2. Jesus has great compassion toward you
  3. Jesus has absolute power over everything

The Scene:

One thing I’ve discovered about Jesus is that He never does anything unintentionally. He’s never haphazard about anything. Here is a lame man, one out of the multitude of invalids who were waiting for the healing waters to be stirred. He chooses specifically to heal this one man. Verse 9 says, “And at once the man was healed, and he took up his bed and walked…”(John 5:9a) How awesome! This man was immediately healed. No one would complain about a lame man being healed, right? Well, it’s a little more complicated than that.  Here is where the tension sets in: “Now that day was the Sabbath.” (John 5:9b) It was on the Sabbath! Why couldn’t he wait until the next day to heal this man? He deliberately healed him on the Sabbath. You can feel the tension.

Verse 10: So the Jews said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath, and it is not lawful for you to take up your bed.” (John 5:10)  You don’t do anything on the Sabbath! You certainly can’t be moving your furniture on the Sabbath! Verse 11: But he answered them, “The man who healed me, that man said to me, ‘Take up your bed, and walk.’” (John 5:11)  Now we’ve got problems. First, there’s a man was moving his bed on the Sabbath. Second, someone healed this man on the Sabbath. Third, the man who did the healing is giving instructions to break the Sabbath. Verse 12: They asked him, “Who is the man who said to you, ‘Take up your bed and walk’?” Who is this guy and where can we find him? Verse 12: Now the man who had been healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had withdrawn, as there was a crowd in the place. (John 5:12)

This week’s observations:

This healing was for the sake of holiness

The place where Jesus healed this was crowded. There was literally a multitude of invalids and likely many who were not invalid. In the midst of the crow, Jesus anonymously slips in and heals this man and gets away from the crowd with out drawing attention to him.

The man who was healed didn’t have the normal faith prerequisite that precedes healing. In fact, he didn’t even know who it was that had healed him. So, why this man, why did Jesus heal this man? I’ve begun asking this question about my own healing. I have prayed since I was a young child to be healed from a severe case of asthma. I was hospitalized numerous times as a child and suffered ever since. For thirty-five years I received no healing. Then a little over a year ago, it was gone. I went from having to take my inhaler several times a day to not at all. It is totally gone! Why me? Why after 35 hears?

Jesus heals for different purposes. Ultimately, every healing is for the glorification of God. We will have plenty of sermons to explore the reasons behind healing, but in this particular case, he healed this man for the sake of holiness. Verse 14: Afterward Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, “See, you are well! Sin no more, that nothing worse may happen to you.” (John 5:14) In other words, I’m more concerned with your hear than your health. I healed you body in order to reach your soul. I chose you and healed you freely! You didn’t earn it and you don’t deserve it. It was by my grace that you have been healed. Accept my grace. By hearing and accepting, you do not come into condemnation, but pass from death unto life. Now accept it an live in that grace, live in that power and sin no more.  He was healed for the sake of holiness.

Recap: Jesus healed this man, but he didn’t know who healed him. The Jews saw him carrying his bed and accused him of breaking the Sabbath. They wanted to know who healed him and told him to carry his bed on the Sabbath, but he didn’t know. Later that day, Jesus found this man in the temple and had a conversation with him. Apparently he discovers who Jesus is as we’ll see here in verses 15-16.

The man went away and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had healed him. And this was why the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because he was doing these things on the Sabbath.(John 5:15-16)

The Jews are really angry with Jesus and even persecuting Him. But this changes from persecution to a plot to kill when Jesus responds to them. But Jesus answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I am working.” (John 5:17) Okay, what’s the big deal? Here’s the big deal: The Jews understood that Jesus was making some pretty bold claims. You might read this and think Jesus was just claiming to be a good helper to God, which He was merely claiming to be serving God. But that’s not what the people there heard. Verse 18: This was why the Jews were seeking all the more to kill him, because not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God. (John 5:18)

 Jesus is equal with the Father

The Jews concluded that Jesus was making himself to be equal with God. How did they draw that conclusion? They were there! The Jews reached this conclusion that Jesus was claiming equality with God, but that’s not the surprising part of the story. The most important part of this story is that Jesus doesn’t refute their conclusion. In fact, He even makes is more obvious.

So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise. For the Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing. And greater works than these will he show him, so that you may marvel. (John 5:19-20)

Jesus does only what the Father does. They are in perfect unity, One God existing eternally (without beginning or end) in one essence as three co-equal persons: Father, Son & Holy Spirit.

Hearing Jesus and believing results in eternal life

For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whom he will. The Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son, that all may honor the Son, just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him. Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life. (John 5:21-25)

Jesus claims equality with God, having the power to raise the dead and judge the world. When we don’t honor the Son, we don’t honor the Father. When we misplace Jesus, we miss God. On the other hand, when our eyes are open to see and believe the greatness of Jesus, His power; His authority; His divinity add His grace, we escape judgment and pass from eternal death to eternal life!