Sunday May 3
Orthodox Daily Devotional
After this there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 2 Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew, Bethesda,[a] having five porches. 3 In these lay a great multitude of sick people, blind, lame, paralyzed, waiting for the moving of the water. 4 For an angel went down at a certain time into the pool and stirred up the water; then whoever stepped in first, after the stirring of the water, was made well of whatever disease he had.[b] 5 Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years. 6 When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be made well?” 7 The sick man answered Him, “Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; but while I am coming, another steps down before me.” 8 Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your bed and walk.” 9 And immediately the man was made well, took up his bed, and walked. And that day was the Sabbath. 10 The Jews therefore said to him who was cured, “It is the Sabbath; it is not lawful for you to carry your bed.” 11 He answered them, “He who made me well said to me, ‘Take up your bed and walk.’” 12 Then they asked him, “Who is the Man who said to you, ‘Take up your bed and walk’?” 13 But the one who was healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had withdrawn, a multitude being in that place. 14 Afterward Jesus found him in the temple, and said to him, “See, you have been made well. Sin no more, lest a worse thing come upon you.” 15 The man departed and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well.
“God-befitting the injunction, and possessing clearest evidence of power and authority above man. For He prays not for the loosing of his sickness for the patient, lest He too should seem to be as one of the holy Prophets, but as the Lord of Powers He commandeth with authority that it be so, telling him to go home rejoicing, to take his bed on his shoulders, to be a memento to the beholders of the might of Him That had healed him. Forthwith the sick man does as is bidden him, and by obedience and faith he gaineth to himself the thrice longed for grace. But since in the foregoing we introduced him as the image and type of the multitude of the Jews, who should be healed in the last times: come let us think of something again harmonizing with the thoughts hereto pertaining, analagous to those before examined. |239 On the Sabbath day doth Christ heal the man, when healed He immediately enjoins him to break through the custom of the law, inducing him to walk on the Sabbath and this laden with his bed, although God clearly cries aloud by one of the holy Prophets, Neither carry forth a burthen out of your house on the Sabbath day. And no one I suppose who is sober-minded would say that the man was rendered a despiser or unruly to the Divine commands, but that as in a type Christ was making known to the Jews, that they should be healed by obedience and faith in the last times of the world (for this I think the Sabbath signifies, being the last day of the week): but that having once received the healing through faith, and having been re-modelled unto newness of life, it was necessary that the oldness of the letter of the law should become of no effect, and that the typical worship as it were in shadows and the vain observance of Jewish custom should be rejected.”
(St. Cyril of Alexandria)