Bible Reference: Luke 18:35-41
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)
Bible Text: 35 As Jesus and his followers arrived at Jericho, there was a blind beggar sitting on the roadside. 36 When he heard the crowd approaching, he asked, “What’s all this commotion about?”
37 “It’s Jesus!” they said. “Jesus the Nazarene is passing by.”
38 The blind beggar shouted, “Jesus, Son of David, have pity and show me mercy!”
39 Those who were in the front of the crowd scolded him and warned him to be quiet. But the blind beggar screamed out even louder, “Jesus, Son of David, show me mercy!”
40 Suddenly Jesus stopped. He told those nearby, “Bring the man over to me.” When they brought him before Jesus, he asked the man, 41 “What is it you want me to do for you?”
“Lord,” he said, “please, I want to see again.”
OBSERVATION: I’m sure that in most churches this past weekend, believers gathered together to praise God for His infinite mercies and grace, but I wonder, how many of you had anyone shouting out to Jesus for healing? Perhaps your weekend services are very organized, and follows a very detailed order of service, and nothing was programmed for such activity. Or was it in your midweek service where the blind come for healing? Do the blind even do this anymore, or have they been talked out of it? It seems appropriate that we should meditate on where the blind, the lame or the sick go to find Jesus these days. Join me as we meditate on this dear friend!
APPLICATION: Because many businesses open to the public on weekends, and because television, radio and podcasts of services are giving churches limited air space, church services are generally programmed to last for a very limited time. But I want us to try and place this story into the context of where we might expect the blind or lame or deaf to have an encounter with Jesus in our current times. As I reflect on this story, I could only imagine a scene where our Worship Pastor might arrive on a Sunday morning to prepare for our worship services, and immediately upon swinging the doors to the sanctuary open, what his reaction might be if he heard 2 or 3 blind persons sitting in the front row seats begging for mercy, or looking to him begging for food. This might seem so unusual to him, that he may quickly retrieve his cell phone and call for law enforcement. Alternately, during the morning service imagine if we had a few people sitting in wheelchairs down one of our isles, and suddenly during our pastoral prayer, they might begin to shout out to God for mercy and healing. What do you imagine the pastor would do? What advice might the elders give him as they stand in shock? Friends, I believe that God got my attention this morning as I meditated on this Scripture, and caused me to look intently at what our churches have turned into. Can you see where it has become a place for those who are well? I know, we should go to church so that we might praise God for all that He has done in our lives, but when last do you remember doing that? If the worship songs hit you the right way, you might praise God, or if the preacher is excitable and super interesting, you might be encouraged to raise your hand in thanksgiving to God. Notice in our story that the blind man paid no attention to the demands of the people to be quiet, he wanted healing and he shouted to get the attention of Jesus, specifically for the purpose of his healing. Are you willing to ignore the expectation of the crowd and communicate your needs boisterously to the Creator of this earth, and of your very own being? I believe that Jesus is waiting for us to work through the structure we have built for our worship to Him, and actually see us humbly bow at His feet to ask for exactly what we need. This might also include a time where you might boldly bow before Him in thanksgiving for miracles wrought in your life, or the lives of your relatives. Oh that God may give us the boldness and strength to approach His throne even today as we recognize Him passing by.
PRAYER: Precious Lord, thank You for stopping the march you were on that day to speak to the needs of a blind man in need of a touch from You. Please help us to never be a stumbling block to anyone seeking an audience with You. The blind still exist today, and others with similar maladies. Please help Your church to always be prepared to help those in need of a Savior. Whether it’s helping them get to the front of the crowd – by helping them get to church, or whether it’s helping them stand before Your throne of grace where they may seek Your face and beg for a hand up. You spoke it in Your Word that You came for the sick and needy and not for the well. Oh that we may seek out the needy and help them meet You wherever You are. AMEN!