Morning, May 8, edited from Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening
“But the man who was healed did not know who it was.” — John 5:13
Years go by quickly to the happy and healthy; but thirty-eight years of disease must have dragged a very weary length along the life of the poor handicapped man. When Jesus, therefore, healed him with a word, while he lay at the pool of Bethesda, he was delightfully aware of a change. Even so it is with the sinner who has for weeks and months been paralyzed with despair, and has wearily sighed for salvation; he is very conscious of the change when the Lord Jesus speaks the word of power, and receives joy and peace in believing. The evil removed is too great to be removed without our discerning it; the life imparted is too remarkable to be possessed and remain inoperative; and the change produced is too marvelous not to be perceived. Yet the poor man was ignorant of the author of his cure; he did not know the holiness of his person, the offices which he held, or the errand which brought him among men. Much ignorance of Jesus may remain even in hearts which feel the power of his blood. We must not hastily condemn men for lack of knowledge; but where we can see the faith which saves the soul, we must believe that salvation has been granted. The Holy Spirit makes men repentant long before he makes them holy; and he who believes what he knows, shall soon know more clearly what he believes. Ignorance is, however, a hindrance; for this poor man was much tormented by the Pharisees, and was quite unable to cope with them. It is good to be able to answer dissenters; but we cannot do so if we do not know the Lord Jesus clearly and with understanding. The cure of his ignorance, however, soon followed the cure of his infirmity, for he was visited by the Lord in the temple; and after that gracious manifestation, he was found testifying that “it was Jesus who had made him whole.” Lord, if you have saved me, show me yourself, that I may declare you to the sons of men.