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Free Books » Bonar, Horatius » Light & Truth: The Gospels

Chapter 33 - Mark 10:52 - Christ's Recognition of Faith Light & Truth: The Gospels by Bonar, Horatius




Christ's Recognition Of Faith.


"And Jesus said unto him, Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way."

-Mark 10:52.



     The Lord is going about on his errands of grace, as one whose heart was full of love, and his hands of blessing. He came, not to condemn, or to curse, or to smite; but to pardon, to bless, to heal, to save. He has to do with body and soul; with the soul specially, but with the body also, both for its own sake, and also to furnish out a type of that which is spiritual, both in the sickness and in the cure. He comes as the physician to the sick; not with the balm of Gilead, or the skill of its physicians, but with the balm of heaven, and the skill of heaven.

     Let us look at this sick one here, and his cure. We may learn much. The disease symbolizes something more terrible than itself; a deeper darkness; a sadder blindness; a more incurable deprivation. To be blind to man and this world is sad; but to be blind to God and to the world to come, infinitely sadder. Man has no idea of the terribleness of such a blindness; a disease that shuts him out from all that is glorious, and beautiful, and divine. O blindness of the soul how terrible art thou!  Rendering us incapable of seeing and knowing God!

     With thee what would heaven be to us! Heaven without seeing God! Let us mark,-

     I. The application. Conscious of blindness, he longs for eyesight. Incapable of curing himself, despairing of cure from his fellow-men, he betakes himself elsewhere. Necessity brings him.

     (1.) He applies in the right quarter. Quitting man, he comes to God. He has heard the fame of Jesus; the cures that He has done; and he concludes, this is the healer for me. He is one who can do what only God can do. He recognizes the necessity for a divine healer. Such is the healer we need; one who is divine; who can do mighty miracles.

     (2.) He applies in the right spirit. He has no promise to trust in, but what he has heard calls up faith. He comes in faith. He comes earnestly. He comes defying opposition and hindrance. He casts away his garment in haste. Earnestness, coupled with confidence in Jesus,-these are the feelings with which he comes. He knows exactly what he wants. He is in good earnest about the matter; and he has confidence in Jesus. He will take no denial. He presents what Bunyan calls his "note of necessity."

     (3.) He applies at the right time. When Jesus was passing by. I would not say that any time can be a wrong time; but there is truth in what Rutherford says, that a man is converted just "in the nick of time." There is a tide of which it behoves us to take advantage. "Seek while He may be found; call while He is near."

     II. The reception. It was just such as we should expect count upon. It was-

     (1.) Most gracious. Jesus stood still and commanded him to be brought; when he comes He receives him lovingly, and grants his request at once. He does not keep him waiting. It is truly the grace of Him who said, "Come unto me." He came without a promise; but that matters not.

     (2.) Most satisfactory. He got the very thing he wanted. He got it immediately. He got it without price or grudge. It was a full response to his appeal. He got good measure, pressed down, and poured into his bosom.

     It was thus that the divine physician did his work on earth. It is thus he does it still. For he has carried up into heaven all his love, and skill, and accessibility. He waits for the blind soul; He stands still; nay, He commands him to be brought. We can use the words which the bystanders did to the blind man of Jericho,-"Be of good comfort, rise, he calleth thee." Poor, blind sinner, rise,-come! Make haste, throw away every impediment, carry your blindness to this heavenly healer. Trust Him for the cure. You will meet with as gracious and satisfactory a reception as did the blind man here.

     III. The effect of the cure. He followed Jesus in the way up to Jerusalem. He did not return to his own house or friends, but at once attached himself to Jesus. The love of Christ constrained him. He could not remain behind; he must follow. Thus gifts from the hand of Jesus attach us to his person. They form a link between us and him. They are as a magnet to draw us. He followed Jesus; and so does each one whose eyes He opens. He follows Him in the way. Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem, and Bartimeus follows him thither. And thus we follow Him too,-to the heavenly Jerusalem,-his home and ours.

     He did not say to the blind man, Follow me; yet he did it; love compelled him: he did not need a command. Unbidden the healed one follows; so follow we. He leads the way; we follow. Anywhere; it matters not where; enough if Jesus leads the way, though it be to the wilderness or to the cross. How much more blessed when it is to Jerusalem that He is going. Thither we follow Him; and there we shall abide with Him. He was on his way to the cross when the blind followed Him. It is not the cross now, but the throne and the glory. How eagerly and delightedly should we follow Him. He speaks to us and says "Follow me."