The Gospel of John #18

By Robert Guenther

We are concluding our review of the Gospel of John chapter four by considering the Lord’s visit to Galilee and what is said to be the 2nd miracle performed there. Next we will begin our introduction of chapter five and the 3rd sign, which is the healing of the impotent man at pool named Bethesda.

Vs. 52  Then enquired he of them the hour when he began to amend. And they said unto him, “Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him.”  This answer has the effect of strength­ening the noble­man’s faith as our next verse reveals.

Vs. 53  So the father knew that itwas at the same hour, in the which Jesus said unto him, “Thy son liveth:” and himself believed and his whole house.  I think we can conclude that the other family members needed to hear about the timing of this miracle to help them believe the truth also.

Vs. 54  This is again the second miracle that Jesus did, when he was come out of Judaea into Galilee. We should not expect God to be performing these same types of miracles or signs for us today. These signs were for Israel and they were a sign nation.  However the facts, that have been recorded should help to strength­en our faith as well.

Ch.5:1  After this there was a feast of the Jews; and Jesus went up to JerusalemWe are not exactly sure which Jewish feast day is being referred to here in this verse.  Dr. Bullinger suggests in his footnotes that it might be Purim, but he is not certain.

Vs. 2  Now there is at Jerusalem by the sheep market a pool, (which is called in the Hebrew tongue Bethesda, having five porches).  The word market is in Italics and means gate. Also the five porches were arches or doorways.  As we read in our next verse these pools have many sick people in them that need their health restored.

Vs. 3  In these lay a great multitude of impotent folk, of blind, halt, withered, waiting for the mov­ing of the water.  There is a question about whether or not these ill people were actually healed at these pools or not.  Let us carefully read our next verse concerning these sick people.

Vs. 4  For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had.  Dr. Bullinger suggests that we add this parenthesis “For (it was said that) an angel”.  The inserting of these words make it clear that there were those who believed that an angel would come and heal them, but the facts do not support that belief.  We have no record that these sick folks were ever actually healed in this manner.

This is an example of religious superstition (false belief concerning healing) being used by the Lord to reveal the truth. continued¼.