If you knew Jesus was within shouting distance, what would your reaction be? Would you call out to him? Would you keep calling if those around shushed you? Would you chase after him? What if you called to him and he heard you? What if he called you over? Would you casually approach? Would you hurl yourself toward him?
Bartimaeus threw aside his coat, jumped up, and came to Jesus.
Mark 10:50 (NLT)
This man was blind. He’d heard the stories of the miracles that followed Jesus. By this time in his ministry, Jesus had restored sight to countless blind people. Bartimaeus wanted his take!
Despite the crowd’s less than enthusiastic response to Bartimaeus’ shouts, he continued on until he’d captured Jesus attention. When Jesus finally responded, Bart didn’t wait. He didn’t take the time to weigh his options or make a list of pros and cons. He didn’t even wait for someone to help him up.
He jumped up, shed the thing that would slow him down, and approached Jesus.
Now is the time when we all expect Jesus to make him see. But look at Jesus’ words:
And Jesus said to him, “Go your way. Your faith has healed you.” And instantly the blind man could see! Then he followed Jesus down the road.
Mark 10:52 (NLT)
Jesus didn’t say, “I have healed you,” he said, “Your faith has healed you.” I wonder if Jesus’ words would have been the same had Bart decided to wait for help or if he got up a little slower or if he’d let his coat hold him down.
Bartemaeus’ response to and faith in Jesus made him well. But that’s not the end of the story. Jesus told him to go his way. So what did he do? Go home? No! He followed Jesus down the road. His old life as a blind man was over thanks to Jesus. He didn’t go back. As far as the scripture reads, he didn’t even go back for his coat. He not only left behind his blindness, he left behind the life that was attached to it.
Daily Bible reading: Numbers 34-36, Mark 10:32-52