Some Citations of Jesus on Healing in John's Gospel
|4||46 - 54||He went again to Cana in Galilee, where he had
changed the water into wine. And there was a royal official
whose son was ill at Capernaum; hearing that Jesus had arrived in
Galilee from Judea, he went and asked him to come and cure his son,
as he was at the point of death. Jesus said to him, 'Unless
you see the signs and portents you will not believe!' 'Sir,'
answered the official, 'come down before my child dies.' 'Go
home,; said Jesus, 'your son will live.' The man believed what
Jesus had said and went on his way home; and while he was still on
the way his servants met him with the news that his boy was alive.
He asked them when the boy boy had begun to recover. They
replied, 'The fever left him yesterday at the seventh hour.'
The father realized that this was exactly the time when Jesus had
said, 'Your son will live'; and he and his household believed.
This new sign, the second, Jesus performed on his return from Judea to Galilee.
|5||1 - 18||After this there was a Jewish festival, and Jesus
went up to Jerusalem. Now in Jerusalem next to the Sheep Pool
there is a pool called Bethesda in Hebrew, which has five porticos,
and under these were crowds of sick people, blind, lame, paralyzed.
One man there had an illness which had lasted thirty eight years,
and when Jesus saw him lying there and knew he had been in that
condition for a long time, he said, 'Do you want to be well again?'
'Sir', replied the sick man, 'I have no one to put me into the pool
when the water is disturbed; and while I am still on the way,
someone else gets down there before me.' Jesus said, 'Get up,
pick up your sleeping mat and walk around.' The man was cured
at once, and he picked up his mat, and started to walk around.
Now that had happened to be the Sabbath, so the Jews said to the man who had been cured, 'It is the Sabbath, you are not allowed to carry your sleeping mat.' He replied, 'But the man who cured me told me, "Pick up your sleeping mat and walk around."' They asked, 'Who is the man who said to you, 'Pick up your sleeping mat and walk around"?' The man had no idea who it was, since Jesus had disappeared, as the place was crowded. After a while Jesus met him in the Temple and said, 'Now you are well again, do not sin any more, or something worse may happen to you.' The man went back and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had cured him. It was because he did things like this on the Sabbath that the Jews began to harass Jesus. His answer to them was, 'My Father still goes on working, and I am at work, too.' But this only made the Jews even more intent on killing him, because not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he spoke of God as his own Father and so made himself God's equal.
|9||1 - 7||As he went along, he saw a man who had been blind
from birth. His disciples asked him, 'Rabbi, who sinned, this
man or his parents, that he should have been born blind?'
'Neither he nor his parents sinned,' Jesus answered, 'he was born
blind so that the works of God might be revealed in him.
As long as the day lasts
Having said this, he spat on the ground, made a paste with the spittle, put this over the eyes of the blind man, and said to him, 'Go and wash in the Pool of Siloam.' So he went off and washed and came back able to see.
|John's Gospel seems to be quite different from the other
three, Matthew, Mark and Luke. Most people don't seem to
notice or care. There are quite contradictory stories if one
examines things like the stories of the passion and death of Jesus.
For example, were any of Jesus' friends/disciples actually present
at his crucifixion? The Jesus in John also seems to speak in very different ways from
the Jesus in the other gospels. The Jesus in John's Gospel
also does a lot more involved talking about himself and much less
healing. Why is this?
I don't want to belabor these issues. I tend to find these sorts of things interesting, but not particularly disturbing unless people who claim to really read the gospels don't acknowledge many of the difficulties that arise if one looks at all four gospels and tries to reconcile their representations with the degrees of certainty it seems most claim for their own interpretations and views. Though, the way Jesus presents himself in this Gospel really seems to be quite different from the others. It is at least a bit disconcerting to me.
My preference is to focus on demonstrating what happens when we truly strive to do unto others as we would have done unto ourselves. I understand this to be far far more important than finding pet phrases that we can interpret to our own preference. Yet, I still really hope to glean additional insights from the Gospels.
As usual we have a focus on Jesus healing on the Sabbath. Particularly with the man at the pool called Bethesda he warns the cured man about sinning.
In this Gospel the Jews seem to be lumped together in such a way that doesn't really coincide with distinctions about Pharisees, zealots, Sadducees and others in other Gospels. Though there are other passages that clearly refer to Pharisees, for example. One wonders if the writer of this Gospel at some point in time considered themselves to be Jewish. I also wonder if the writer of this Gospel considered Jesus and/or any of his apostles to be Jewish. But, in some passages the Jews are described as not being united in their perceptions of Jesus. I think we also must wonder how many of Jesus' sheep are considered to be Jews.
But, we still get the portrayal of so many others as caring so little about the sufferings of others. We also see their lack of a sense of proportion. Even if they see Jesus as committing "crimes" or "sins" one should hope their senses of retribution would be more proportionate. I also wish they would strive more to develop their own nihypocrisy rather than put so much effort into disparaging and/or diminishing another. One can only guess at their justifications for why Jesus was performing so many signs of connections to the Father and they were not. Though, this seems to all fall within the human tradition of saying "Not Welcome to Earth" to anyone who really demonstrates certain sorts of spiritual developments.
With the man that has been blind from birth we get some insights into Jesus' perception of God's motivations. It is curious how the people with Jesus are inclined to wonder whether this man's blindness from birth came from his own sin's. I think this tells us much about these people's beliefs in some sort of existence previous to this present lifetime. Jesus doesn't contradict the possibility that we have some sort of pre-existence where we can sin and experience struggles in this life due to this. He claims that in this instance this man's struggles are so that the works of God might be revealed in him. Personally, I wish Jesus was present and making himself obvious, in front of a large group of people, so I could discuss this more with him. To me, his choice of words and/or their translation have too many different possible meanings to really be clearly interpretable. I suspect such things don't disturb many others.
One might wonder if God does unto others as He would have done unto Himself. It seems to me that a just and caring God would have us investigate and know whether this is true. I have no desire to be born blind from birth so that the works of God might be revealed in me. I can think of a lot of other ways I wish the works of God might be revealed in me. Maybe Jesus' Father does like such things for himself. and doesn't feel bad about expecting this from a lowly Earther.
In John's Gospel, Jesus gives some additional insights and arguments about his use of the phrase "Son of God" and others related.
It is curious to me that "the Jews" are so convinced that they can determine whether someone else is God. Personally, I don't believe I can tell. Though I would expect any God to understand my limitations about being able to discern whether someone else is or is not a God. This is the biggest thing I struggle with when Jesus is reported to have said the things relating to his unity with God.
As usual, I prefer to focus on things I can do and discern. I think that I can discern someone's efforts to love other's as they love themselves to some reasonable extents. I can also get to know and trust others over time. I'm sure this will trouble some, but when I have encounters with beings that claim to be "God" or in some sort of perfect relationship with God I ask them how can I ever really know? As far as I'm concerned there is nothing they can really do to prove this to me. It also seems there are so many beings that claim they are far more knowledgeable, loving, nihypocritical, spiritual and religious and so on, than I (particularly on Earth).
But, in addition, I have seen some very incredible works done by being(s), some claiming to be "God". How can I know there are not greater beings? How can I know this isn't Satan trying to deceive me?
I have essentially no doubt that even if I share a relationship with a being that has done things to extents that basically no one else will believe I have had such experiences, there will be no end to people that will claim to "know" I am not interacting with "God". I think this is particularly true if I tell them this "God" wants something they don't want.
I also think/feel that regardless of who I interact with, even if it is God, then at a very significant number of occasions, Earthly authorities will claim that it isn't. Clearly, these magnificent authorities seem to think I cannot know whether or not I am interacting with "God". I guess this is one of the few times I don't disagree with them!!!
What I care about is a being's efforts to do unto others as one would have done unto them. I care about whether a being is aware of my limitations to discern all kinds of things and whether they expect certain sorts of beliefs that really are beyond my abilities to know/believe. I expect others to always question my commitments, efforts and effectiveness at doing unto others as I would have done unto me. Though, I do hope that at least some trust develops over time. I have no qualms questioning the same commitments in others regardless of who they claim to be. If "God(s)" expect me to believe in them when I truly don't, then I am even more inclined to mistrust them.