Bold faith like Bartimaeus

Luke 18:35-43: As Jesus approached Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging. When he heard the crowd going by, he asked what was happening. They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.” He called out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” Those who led the way rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” Jesus stopped and ordered the man to be brought to him. When he came near, Jesus asked him, “What do you want me to do for you?” “Lord, I want to see,” he replied. Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight; your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus, praising God. When all the people saw it, they also praised God.

The above section of scripture tells a story of a blind beggar named Bartimaeus. In the book “Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life,” Donald S. Whitney teaches this story as an example of spiritual discipline. He explains that we need to place ourselves in the path of God’s grace and seek Him much as Bartimaeus placed himself in Jesus’ path and sought Him. If we want to be Godly we must have the same discipline as the blind beggar.

Reading this story makes me want to run out into the streets of our home and community and proclaim the name of Jesus to every person that passes by. What boldness Bartimaeus had! He had heard the good news, felt the presence of the Son of God nearby, and he wanted to recklessly abandon all things and make sure Jesus knew he was there. He recklessly abandoned any apprehension and hesitations. He didn’t care what others thought of him nor what they might say. He was desperate for saving grace. He wanted a taste of that which was good. With his eyes, he could not see, and he knew just the right person who was soon to be in his path that could heal him of this iniquity. He yelled out for Jesus. “Son of David, have mercy on me! Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” The locals tried to quiet him. As DW states in his book, “Those who were leading the procession, perhaps some of the local dignitaries, were embarrassed by the beggar’s disruptive behavior and sternly told him to keep quiet.” This “hushing” from the crowd only made him proclaim his desires for Jesus even more so. I love that Jesus heard this beggars cries, called out for the poor man and healed him of his blindness because of his faith.

Are you holding back or are you shouting on the rooftops and proclaiming your love for Jesus? Just like the leaders asked Bartimaeus to keep quiet, to calm down his longing for a healer, we often feel like we have to keep quiet and suppress our boldness for Christ. Prayer has been taken out of schools and sports, we often feel like we are not the majority but the minority and I don’t want to be quiet. I am ready to stand up for Christ and be a Bartimeaus. Are you with me? Let’s be loud!! Let’s not allow others who may not believe like we believe hinder our desire to worship the Son of David. He is the King of Kings, the Lord of Lords. He wears the crown and we worship Him alone. Don’t be quiet. Don’t be afraid. Cry out with me “Son of David, have mercy on me! Son of David, have mercy on me!” I know He hears his children. I know He is answering our prayers. I know He is coming to heal and redeem those whom He calls His very own.
Call out to Him! Call out to Him!

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