Jump to content
JesusWalk Bible Study Forum

Q1. Character and Grace

Recommended Posts

Q1. (John 5:1-16) How would you describe the invalid’s character? The invalid’s faith? How does Jesus’ healing here demonstrate the grace of God? Why do we humans find it difficult to accept grace when it is offered to us? Why do we resist the concept that God’s gifts are entirely by grace?

I would say that the invalid's character is one of constant complaining, ingratitude, unrepentant, and whining. The invalid's faith was very weak if there was any. The healing Jesus gave him displayed God's grace by showing the invalid that He could be healed despite his lack of faith. Because we believe that we need to earn everything we get and we don't deserve them. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 5 months later...

We ask a lot of questions on why Jesus did this and why Jesus did that?? We are no better than the people that He healed in the scriptures.  We are no better than those who oppose Him, the religious leaders at this time.  The mind of Christ is not for us to wonder.  What is important is His message of salvation.  Are we going to accept God's grace for the saving of our souls??  The man at the pool was healed but it was the state of his soul that Jesus was concern with.  The prostitute was saved from the mop but it was her soul that Jesus was concern with.  "Go and sin no more" is the way of living that is required . The belief that a person's illness is the result of sin is false.  We would all be sick with some kind of deformity if that were true!! "For we have all sinned and come short of the glory of God". Jesus is preparing men for the gospel.  Until now only a few have heard him teach.  In order to be saved the gospel must be preached to all men.  This is what Jesus was sent to do.  This is what Jesus is doing during His whole life here on earth. The people do not understand what is being said to them when Jesus speaks.  Everyone is not listening with "pure in heart".  Jesus is saying that there has to be a sincere change in the way we live and in what we believe.  Grace is given as a gift of God but it is not free!!  It requires us to do something in order to obtain it!!!  God gives it freely but it has to be chosen and followed.  There are requirements that are set  that must be meet.  Jesus isn't saying that the reason the man was crippled was because of his sin.  He was telling him that sin would lead him to separation from God.  Go and do not sin.  Turn from a life of sin and walk in the holiness of God.  Jesus is speaking to everyone, not just this man.  He is telling us how to have eternal life with God the father.  Why are we so caught up in explaining the man's character and what he did and is doing?   These are lessons to us as well, to examine our own lives. Jesus's ministry is to teach people the word of God and how to obtain heaven.  this is the way God has chosen for us to be redeemed to Him.  It is His way of Salvation.  It is not our way or what we think.  When we choose to follow Christ, we walk in His shoes, we do what He does and say do.  The people were not looking for the kind of savior Jesus was.  They were looking for a physical King, not a spiritual one.  Even the religious leaders did not understand what they were dealing with.  All their knowledge of the law did not prepare them for this man Jesus.  He was not what they wanted, not what they were looking for, so they rejected Him.  We are still rejecting Him today.  We still do not understand.  What will it take?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 9 months later...

1.    Q1. (John 5:1-16) How would you describe the invalid's character? I would describe him as hopeless and somewhat arrogant.

2.     The invalid's faith? There’s nothing that testifies to the invalid having any level of faith. His answer is more in the form of a complaint and putting blame on others:I have lost hope because nobody helps me and these people are selfish, rather than an enthusiastic “I’d really appreciate being made well”.

3.     How does Jesus' healing here demonstrate the grace of God? Jesus’ healing demonstrates the Grace of God because this man firmly believed that the only way he could receive healing was through being dipped in the Bethesda pool. He didn’t even dream that healing could come by the Son of God.

4.     Why do we humans find it difficult to accept grace when it is offered to us? It’s not only from our ignorance; it is also because the concept of grace is a difficult concept to understand just like that. It takes time and being well-grounded in Scripture.

 Why do we resist the concept that God's gifts are entirely by grace? We have a culture of “eating by the sweat of one’s brow” imprinted on us. So we believe we can only benefit through our own determined effort, which serves to boost our pride.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 year later...

The impotent man did not know Christ.  Hpe most likely thought that Christ would assist him to the pool; he was centered on his despairing condition.  It seems that all hope was practically gone..38 years of being an invalid is a long time.

His faith in his human efforts was transferred to Christ.   He looked unto Christ at that moment of healing.  Demonstration---what a beautifull word!  Christ has Eternal life in himself.   Christ is the Logos, Son of God and Son of Man.  The impotent man is a type of Judaism.  Like many others, they placed their faith on purification ceremonies and the intricate rules of the Pharisees.   The current status-quo was not conducive.   The lame and crippled were hoping against hope for a movement of the Bethesda water.

Christ healed this man so quickly.   Just a few words !   No arcane gnostic or Greek magic rituals.   It was the grace of God poured out! The impotent man didn't have all his theological concepts ironed out.  The Pharisees had no faith in Christ.  But Christ could see the flicker of faith in his heart.  Samaritan woman too had that spiritual illumination that Christ is able to do miracles.

We are conditioned that we must be perfect in all theological matters and have all our ducks in a row,  to be healed.  Christ sees our hearts.  He knows that we are like three month olds; like a loving Father, He is patient beyond words.

Entirely by grace!   These words echo through my mind !   Unless I cooperate with God's grace,  the gifts of graces can go right by me.   The impotent man had to put in some effort by the pool.   If I don't step out in faith,  there will be log jam in my spiritual walk and in my ministry.   If I sit at home and don't get out and preach the Gospel; God's graces will be held back.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 months later...

1. How would you describe the invalids character?

Unlike most of the people here, i would describe the invalid as yes, maybe a little bit of a complainer, but also loyal and unknowing. The man carried his bed on the Sabbath, even though it was unlawful, because Jesus, his Healer, had told him to. Onto the bigger matter though, i believe that the man reported Jesus to the Jewish leaders because he thought he was being helpful, that they could ONLY help, i don't think he had any idea that his giving away of Jesus was actually harmful. As for being grateful, i believe this man was pretty grateful, after all, it's kind of hard not to be grateful after a miracle like this, and his giving away of Jesus was not done from ungratefulness. Like i said, i believe he thought that what he was doing was the right thing, when in reality it was far from it (like lots of us in life, ex: trying to bring others to Christ by being really pushy; not the best method!)!

2. The invalid's faith?

The invalid's faith was weak. We're not told whether he knew who Jesus was or not, but even if he didn't know Jesus, seeing Jesus' confidence in being able to heal him should have sparked some sort of faith in the man, instead though, but even then, the man's faith was still put in the pool of Bethesda...

3. How does Jesus' healing here demonstrate the grace of God?

This man didn't deserve what he received at all (just like all of us!), yet by the grace of God, he received what he was yearning for the most (probably), healing of his paralysis!

4. Why do we humans find it difficult to accept grace when it is offered to us?

As humans, we grow up with the idea that "we get what we work for" so when grace is offered to us, it's really hard to accept it because we didn't work for it. Also, because of this teaching, when we do get offered grace, we often reject it because getting we something we didn't work for shows weakness, and sadly, we, as humans, would rather keep our pride than receive grace!!!

5. Why do we resist the concept that God's gifts are entirely by grace?

We, as humans, like to think that what we have is because of what we did. We tend to think that we can "earn" this by our works or we "deserve" that because of what we did, and so on. This makes it really hard for us to accept that everything we have is a gift from God (even air and being able to breath it!), everything we have is because of God's grace, because it shows us that we didn't do anything to earn what we have, and that shows us that we are weak by ourselves and that we are fully reliant on God, and lots of times, it's hard to come to grips with our own weakness and full reliance on God (even though it's on God)!!!



Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 months later...

1.(John 5:1-16)

1.1.  How would you describe the invalid's character?

1.2.  The invalid's faith?

1.3.  How does Jesus' healing here demonstrate the grace of God?

1.4.  Why do we humans find it difficult to accept grace when it is offered to us?

1.5.  Why do we resist the concept that God's gifts are entirely by grace?

Firstly I want to admit I had never heard or thought of the man as Pastor and others have drawn him so negatively. Answers given by Joe_Applegarth and Daniel R and others aggreeing on their views are more my line of understanding of this man who had been an invalid for 38 yrs. 

Invalid according to the Collins Dictionary is someone who is very ill or disabled and who needs to be cared for by someone else. 

According to the RD Complete Wordfinder/Dictionary and Thesaurus it is a cripple, valetudinarian, sufferer. (someone confined to a wheelchair, someone who is housebound). 

1.1. Now that I have a picture of the man and read the Scripture again, I find him described in v5 as having a deep-seated and lingering disorder for 38 yrs (Not just 1 or 2, but 38, which is a lifetime). He is alone there. Could not have been an easy situation. When Jesus approached him, (Jesus supernaturally knew of his condition - he had not been told about it) only then did the man give his reason for still being there beside the Pool. We are not told that he whined about it. Basically he answered the question Jesus asked of him by explaining why he hadn't gotten into the pool yet to receive his healing. 

I see him as accepting his lot in life. Of being left alone to hopefully try to get to the waters in time.  He does try to get to the waters, but has failed so far. (perseverance, he has not given up) 

Possibly he was not from close by and friends had brought him to the Pool in the hope of helping him. (Possibly visitors come for the Jewish Festival as well). They then continued on their way to do what they had come to do, to meet with him later again, hopefully as a healed individual. 

1.2.  The fact that the man did what Jesus (a stranger), told him to do attested to the fact that he had faith that he would get healed. 

1.3.  Grace is unmerited favor of God, His compassion. 

There were a great number of sick folk and we are told of only this healing and that Jesus had quietly gone away (v13), (had passed on unnoticed), since there was a crowd in that place. So, we see it was truly grace, shown to this man, that he was healed. 

1.4.  I guess pride. We know that we are not worthy and then when we are given something we have not earned, we feel shame and inferior almost. 

1.5.  God has given so much. All is FREE. I cannot outgive God. 

I don't have more of an answer to your question. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...