“And they told him that Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.”
Is today the day when your importunity becomes His opportunity?
We know not why he was blind or how long he’d been that way. We simply know Bartimaeus was the son of Timaeus and sat on the side of the highway outside of the ancient, historic city of Jericho begging for alms.
Even now, if we close our eyes and open our mental movie-house, we can see his sightless eyes. . .outstretched hand. . .and monotonous voice crying “Alms, Alms. Would you help a poor blind man?” as folks passed by.
Sadly, then, like today, most folks don’t want to be bothered by beggars. They’ve got more “important” things to do. Places to go. People to see. And, “With the economy being as bad as it is,” they reason, “We just don’t have any extra to spare.”
So, they walk on by. Not stopping or stooping down to Bartimaeus’ ear level and talking to him. Some MIGHT place a small coin in his dirty, outstretched hand or throw one in his tin cup if he had one nearby; but most will just keep on passing by like “strangers in the night.”
That’s what Bartimaeus thought Jesus was going to do that day when he heard what all the uproar was as the crowd thronged around Jesus on His way into Jericho (vv.35-36). Somewhere along the line he’d heard of this Man from Galilee and how He’d been performing all types of miracles.
“Why this is my one shot!” Bartimaeus may have reasoned when he heard what was going on.
“If He can do it for others, then surely He can do it for me!” he reasoned.
So, with a passionate and persistent voice he began to cry out, “O Jesus, You Son of David, have mercy on me” (v.38). At first no one paid attention to the blind beggar. They’d grow accustomed to his dull, droning voice.
But, he kept on calling out: “O Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
This began to grate on some of their nerves and they told him to shut up: “But he cried so much the more” (v.39b). A desperate person is not an easily-deterred person, especially if you feel in your heart it’s now or never.
How wonderful to see the Savior stopped, told the folks to bring Bartimaeus to him and healed him (vv.40-42). Hallelujah! Matthew’s version added the words “So Jesus had compassion on him and touched his eyes” (20:34a). What a loving Shepherd is He!
Dear Pilgrim, did you realize the Lord Jesus “is passing by” your house or office this morning? Did you hear Him when He came in? Do you feel Him right there beside you right now? Be like Bartimaeus; tell Him what you need. Then, let Him do a miracle in your life even as He did in that blind beggar’s life. Cry out to Him and don’t stop. This is your day.
By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated October 29, 2009