Mark 10:46–52 (NASB 95)
Bartimaeus Receives His Sight
46 Then they came to Jericho. And as He was leaving Jericho with His disciples and a large crowd, a blind beggar named Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, was sitting by the road. 47 When he heard that it was Jesus the Nazarene, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” 48 Many were sternly telling him to be quiet, but he kept crying out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” 49 And Jesus stopped and said, “Call him here.” So they called the blind man, saying to him, “Take courage, stand up! He is calling for you.” 50 Throwing aside his cloak, he jumped up and came to Jesus. 51 And answering him, Jesus said, “What do you want Me to do for you?” And the blind man said to Him, “Rabboni, I want to regain my sight!” 52 And Jesus said to him, “Go; your faith has made you well.” Immediately he regained his sight and began following Him on the road.
Examine / Explain
The text is simple. A man who became blind was healed; he had faith in the Messiah to be healed, and he followed Jesus after being physically healed. What I see is a great picture of salvation. We don’t know how the man lost his sight, but he was at rock bottom. The only thing he owned was a cloak. In hearing the word of God, he was drawn to Jesus. His heart was pointed to the Messiah and believed. He was then called, and the man left everything he owned and met face-to-face with Jesus. He admitted that he needed saving through his confession of wanting sight. He believed that Jesus could heal him. And in that moment of gaining sight, he was able to see his Lord and Savior. Then, he followed Jesus.
How do I apply this to my life?
It’s such a great story. To see a picture of salvation being played out blows my mind. I need to take inventory of my life when reading this. The very next chapter in Mark is the Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem. Jesus was literally headed toward His death and still lives life interrupted. He stops for the one sheep that believes he can do all things, and if he can do all things, he can save me. I can be forgiven of my sins. Not only that, but Bartimaeus literally drops everything to meet Jesus face-to-face. What do I still carry around in my walk with Jesus? I have come face-to-face with my Lord and Savior. And yet, in my deep flaws, I still carry baggage for no reason other than it’s familiar. It’s not that we are creatures that fear change; we are creatures of comfort. We don’t like being inconvenienced. We don’t want to be forced into uncomfortable situations. We focus more on our baggage than the fact that we are no longer blind. Most of us will never know what it is like to be physically blind, be we all know spiritual blindness. Would be stop for the one while we are on the way to something important? Even after we have received our spiritual sight, we still pass on to those in need. I know we do because I do it. I’m a broken human in a broken world who doesn’t want to be bothered so I can be happy. I say this over and over, but what will it take to truly have a perspective change? The heart change that says I can leave my “cloak” behind and follow Jesus to His death. Again, there are so many images in this story. This story is complex, even though it’s short. But so are we. I’m not making excuses, but life is complex. What else did Bartimaeus have? I have a spouse, children, bills, and so on. The complexity of Christianity is loving the LORD your God with everything you have, then loving others more than yourself all the while life is life-ing. We rely too much on our physical sight, and our spiritual vision becomes clouded.
What is my response?
Father, I need my spiritual vision to be improved. I need to live in a life-interrupted state. I need a change of perspective to see the needs in front of me and trust that you have fulfilled my needs. Have I confessed my needs to You? I know you know them already, but I have talked with you today. More times than I would like to admit, I see You as a far-off quiet being. Uninterested in my daily life. Can you save me? Absolutely! Do you care about the amount of money I have in the bank? I know You do, but do I believe it? My relationship with You is fragmented. Not that I doubt my salvation but relating to You is difficult. Not that I strive to see you on my level, but there is a feeling that you would be indifferent about me. Lies. So help me change how I see You and others. Let me gain the sight I need and see Jesus face-to-face every day of life that I have left. Amen.