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(Compare Matt. 20:29–34; Mark 10:46–52)
DISCOVERY OF THE FACTS
1. Blind, by the Wayside, Begging, vv. 35–39
How do the three accounts of this miracle differ from one another? (Compare Matt. 20:29, 30; Mark 10:46.) Can these differences be reconciled? In what way is Bartimeus a type of the natural man? (Josh. 6:17, f. c., 26; 2 Cor. 4:4; Rev. 3:17; Is. 64:6.) Where was Bartimeus sitting? Was that a pleasant place to be? Was that as good a place for Bartimeus to be as in some shady palm grove of Jericho? Why? Where is the best place for all of us to be? (Luke 10:39–42.) What good news did Bartimeus hear? Who would Bartimeus rather hear was passing by than any one else in the world? Why? How did he know Jesus was passing? Are there any today who need to know Jesus is passing? How can we let them know? What did Bartimeus do when he knew Jesus was passing? Was that much to do? Was it enough? Is it usually enough? (Ro. 10:13.) When is the time to call upon Him? (Is. 55:6.) How did he address Jesus? What did that mode of address mean? (Jer. 23:5; Matt. 1:1; 12:23; 22:41, 42.)
Had the people told Bartimeus that “the son of David” was passing by? How many times is it recorded that Jesus was so addressed? (Matt. 9:27; 15:21, 22; 21:9, 15.) For what did he cry? Were the people pleased to hear him calling for mercy? Why not? Were they right or wrong. Are people nowadays ever displeased when they hear poor, sinful, afflicted people calling upon Jesus for mercy? Did the rebuke keep Bartimeus from crying out? (Compare Mark 10:48.) Was he right? Why was it well that Bartimeus improved that opportunity? Ought sneers and reproofs even of religious people today keep needy ones from calling upon Jesus for help? Why would not Bartimeus be put off? What promise of God’s Word made it sure Bartimeus would be heard? (Jer. 20:13.) What about Bartimeus’ prayer was worthy of imitation?
2. Receiving Sight, Following Jesus, Glorifying God, vv. 40–43
Did Jesus rebuke him for praying? Will He us? (Phil. 4:6.) What did Jesus do? (Compare Mark 10:49.) Was Jesus on important business? What is the lesson? Did Jesus Himself call Bartimeus? Why not? Did they change their tone? (Mark 10:49.) What did they say to Bartimeus? (Mark 10:49. What is the most cheering thing that can be said to sorrowing souls? How many of them does He call? (Matt. 11:28.) Was Bartimeus ready to go? (Mark 10:50.) Did he stop to argue? Why not? By what act did he show his eagerness to get to Jesus? (Mark 10:50.) What keeps many today from getting to Jesus and receiving His blessing? What must the sinner throw away when he comes to Christ? (Is. 64:6; 55:7; Heb. 12:2.) What made Bartimeus willing to throw away everything? What would make the sinner willing to give up everything to get to Jesus? How will the Christian regard everything that retards his progress to Christ? (Phil. 3:7, 8.) What question did Jesus put to him? Did not Jesus know what he wanted? (Matt. 6:8.) Had he not already told Jesus what he wanted?
What kind of prayers does Jesus desire? What was the blind man’s answer? What reason had he for supposing that Jesus would open blind eyes? (Is. 35:5; 42:1, 7; Luke 4:17, 18.) What was Jesus’ answer? What was this faith that Bartimeus had? What is saving faith? (Luke 7:50.) In what ways did Bartimeus show his faith? Where was the healing power? How, then, did his faith save him? Was Jesus’ word effective? (Matt. 8:8.) Is it just as effective today? Was it a beautiful world Bartimeus saw? What was the most beautiful object Bartimeus saw? How did Bartimeus show that Jesus was more beautiful than Jericho? When Jesus saves or heals us, what does He desire we should do? Could Bartimeus follow Jesus before he got his eyes open? Can we follow Him before He saves us? What did the people do?
CLASSIFICATION OF TEACHINGS
He goes to Jericho (the cursed city) and seeks the lost, 35; passes the place where those who need Him are, 37; listens to the cry of distress, 40; stands still—no matter how important and urgent His business—to help a poor, blind, beggar that asks His help, 40; commands that those who need Him be brought to Him, 40; desires definite and explicit statement of what we wish, 40, 41; answers the prayer of earnest faith, 42; opens blind eyes, 42; saves, 42.
(1). His condition:
An inhabitant of Jericho, 35; compare Josh. 6:17, 26; blind, 35; compare 2 Cor. 4:4; a beggar, 35; compare Rev. 3:17; Is. 64:6; no help for him in man, 35.
(2). Where he was:
By the wayside:—a dusty, disagreeable place, but Jesus was going to pass that way, and better the dusty roadside where Jesus passes by than the loveliest retreat where He is not.
(3). What happened:
Jesus of Nazareth passed by, 36 (it was his last opportunity); he was told that Jesus of Nazareth was passing by, 37; believed the testimony, 38; realized his need, 38, 39; believed Jesus was the Christ, 38; believed Jesus could and would have mercy on him, 38, 39; cried for mercy, 38; was rebuked for crying, 39; cried all the more, 39; made himself heard, 40; was called to Jesus, 40; threw away everything that impeded his progress to Jesus (his best but ragged covering) (compare Mark 10:50); came to Jesus, 40; told Jesus just what he wanted, 41; got it, 42; was saved, 42; received his sight, 42; saw nothing so lovely as Jesus Himself, 43; left Jericho and its palm groves, and followed Jesus in the dusty, weary journey to the cross, 43; glorified God, 43.
How to get it:
Feel your need, 38; hear of Jesus, 37; believe Jesus can and will save you, 38, 42; cry to Him, 38; be in earnest, 39; compare Mark 10:50.
It is our part to tell the sinner of Jesus (37), it is the sinner’s part to cry unto Him for mercy (38), it is Jesus’ part to save (42).
4. Saving Faith
What it is:
Confidence that Jesus can and will save, 42.
How it manifests itself:
Crying unto Jesus, 38; overcoming obstacles, 39; throwing away every impediment, Mark 10:50; coming to Jesus, 40; telling Him just what we wish, 41; following Jesus, 43; glorifying God, 43.
Where it is found:
In those who realize their need, 35–38.
What it gets:
Salvation, 42; sight, 42.
5. Prevailing Prayer
Short, 38, 41; definite, 41; personal, 38; earnest, 38, 39; importunate, 39; believing, 41.
Gets what it asks, 42; gets more than it asks, 42.