Sixth Sunday of Easter 5.5.13 John 5.1-9

27 04 2013

I Have No One

Here we  see compassion triumph over law and healing as a stepping stone to trouble. In these ways this passage is typical of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

John 5.1-9

After this there was a festival of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.

2 Now in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate there is a pool, called in Hebrew Beth-zatha, which has five porticoes. 3In these lay many invalids—blind, lame, and paralysed. 5One man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years. 6When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had been there a long time, he said to him, ‘Do you want to be made well?’ 7The sick man answered him, ‘Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; and while I am making my way, someone else steps down ahead of me.’ 8Jesus said to him, ‘Stand up, take your mat and walk.’ 9At once the man was made well, and he took up his mat and began to walk.

Now that day was a sabbath.

Reflection

To help give shape to the reflection here are three types of question: head questions, heart questions and hand questions. They are about our intellectual response, our emotional response and our practical or behavioural response. I hope that you will want to work at all three levels.

Head Questions

  1. Jesus is off to Jerusalem again. How many times is that so far in this gospel?
  2. Why did Jesus ask the man that question in verse 6?

Heart Questions

  1. What would it be like to be ill for 38 years?
  2. How does it feel to ‘have no one’?

Hand Questions

  1. Jesus noticed those who needed to be healed. Who do you need to notice?
  2. Who is waiting for you to take them to a place of healing?

Finally

These questions are intended to challenge you to engage more closely with the passage and to hear and feel what it has to say to you.  That’s more than a five-minute task. And so is the follow-up, working out what you might want to say to others as a result of engaging with the passage with head, heart and hands.  Take your time.

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