Kenneth W. Hagin
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And they came to Jericho; and as he went out of Jericho with his disciples and a great number of people, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the highway side begging.And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out, and
‘THY FAITH HATH MADE THEE WHOLE’
And they came to Jericho; and as he went out of Jericho with his disciples and a great number of people, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the highway side begging. And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out, and say, Jesus, thou son of David, have mercy on me. And many charged him that he should hold his peace: but he cried the more a great deal, Thou son of David, have mercy on me. And Jesus stood still, and commanded him to be called. And they call the blind man, saying unto him, Be of good comfort, rise; he calleth thee. And he, casting away his garment, rose, and came to Jesus. And Jesus answered and said unto him, What wilt thou that I should do unto thee? The blind man said unto him, Lord, that I might receive my sight. 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 10:46–52
As you study the New Testament, you will find that the phrase “Thy faith hath made thee whole” can be found almost every time Jesus ministered to people. This shows us that it was not the power of Jesus alone that healed these people.
Although the power Jesus possessed was in operation, notice that Jesus didn’t say, “My power healed you.” Instead, He said, “Your faith did it!”
Jesus came into the world, the Word of God says, to seek and to save the lost and to set the captives free.The Miracle has come: He is here now to deliver and set you free!
Will the Miracle pass you by, or will you accept Him? It is up to you to receive what you need from God; it is not up to God, your family, your neighbor, or me.
In certain things we do, we are supposed to observe protocol. I learned this when I served in the U.S. Army as a young man. I gladly wore the Army green. I am very patriotic. I am glad to be an American. We may not have everything right, but we still have the best country there is, and I’m proud of it. I trust you are proud of the country you live in, too.
When I was in the Army, I learned to wait on protocol. You waited until you were told to speak to certain people. And there was a special way you did it. You didn’t go bursting into the colonel’s office without an invitation. When you had an invitation to go to the colonel’s office, you were ushered in by the sergeant. And there was a special way you were supposed to introduce yourself. You were supposed to come to attention and snap a salute: “Specialist Fourth Class Hagin reporting as ordered, sir.”
You stood there and didn’t say another word until he said something to you. If he didn’t say anything to you, you stood still until he got ready to say something.
And then you only gave a brief answer. That is protocol.
But I want to tell you if you wait on protocol to be introduced to Jesus, you’ll be in trouble, because the devil will see to it that that opportunity never comes. So if you want to find out about Jesus, you will have to take the initiative.
Why? Because God did away with all of that when Jesus went to Calvary. Before Calvary there was religious protocol. Before Calvary, you did not go into the presence of God. You went to a certain area of the Temple. The priest took your sacrifice from you. Then he went and slaughtered the animal and so forth.
The High Priest was the only one who was allowed to go into the presence of God. The people themselves never contacted God on a personal level. It always had to be through the religious protocol—the priesthood God had established so people could contact Him.
On the day Jesus Christ was crucified, however, the veil of the Temple that separated natural man from the presence of God was torn in two, and religious protocol no longer was necessary. A special introduction no longer was necessary. Mankind could go into the very presence of God through the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ!
REAL FAITH GETS THE ANSWER
Blind Bartimaeus realized that in order to receive what he needed from Jesus–his healing–he was going to have to do something about it. The people in the crowd wouldn’t help him get to Jesus, as we see in verse 48 of our text. Many ordered him to sit down and be quiet. (That’s what they were saying to him.)
But the Miracle was coming. Bartimaeus knew that. He had heard about Jesus. The Bible says, “… Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word …” (Rom. 10:17). Bartimaeus had heard all that Jesus was doing, so he had faith. But now he was in trouble. His church was telling him to sit down and be quiet. “His church?” you say. Yes, his countrymen. They all belonged to the same religious group. They had the same rules and regulations. They told him, “No, you can’t do that. You have to sit down and be quiet.”
In the day and age in which we live, the Miracle is coming—and is passing a lot of people by, because they are listening to tradition rather than listening to what God says. They are being quieted, so they sit down and keep their mouth shut.
I want you to notice when faith begins to talk. Real faith is there. It cannot be shut up. Real faith is persistent. Real faith gets the answer.
I’m not talking about someone who is trying something; I’m talking about somebody who has faith. Bartimaeus had faith.
Notice when he cried out even louder to Jesus, Jesus stopped. He said, “I hear somebody reaching out to Me, calling to Me.” You see, the power of God always recognizes the cry of faith. It always will stop for the cry of faith.
Notice, too, how that religious crowd changed when Jesus said, “Bring him to Me.” They changed. They said, “Oh, He wants you. Make way. The Master wants him.”
The same thing happens today. A local pastor or teacher can begin teaching truth from the Word of God and the people will say, “Well, I don’t know about that. That is different. I haven’t heard that before.” But when somebody with a big name preaches the same thing, everybody says, “Oh, yes. That’s all right. Go right ahead, brother, and teach it.”
If you are teaching and it is not contrary to God’s Word, keep teaching it. Don’t teach your own doctrine; teach God’s Word.
We are not supposed to judge the truth of somebody’s teaching by whether or not he has a big name. We are supposed to study the Word of God ourselves to find out if that is what the Word says. And if it is what God’s Word says, it doesn’t make any difference if the preacher is famous or unknown.
There are many people teaching the truth of God’s Word today who are totally unknown. Neither you nor I nor anybody else has ever heard of them. In some cases, they haven’t been in the right place at the right time.
A pastor can get up in some Word church and teach, and everybody looks at one another out of the corner of their eye. They don’t want to say anything, but they really don’t go along with what he’s saying, so they hold back. Then Brother Hagin can get on the radio or in a crusade and start teaching the same thing and everybody will say, “Our pastor is right. He must have got that from Brother Hagin!” Yet the pastor may never have heard Brother Hagin or me teach on it.
What happened? We have the same Holy Spirit. We have the same Bible. And the Spirit of God can show that pastor something. Just because we preach it doesn’t give credibility to what he preaches.
CAST AWAY YOUR PAST
Jesus stopped. He always will stop when the cry of faith reaches Him. He called the blind man to Him. The crowd told Bartimaeus, “Be of good comfort, rise ...” (A short time before, these same people were telling him to shut up.)
Now look at verse 50. I have preached from this verse many, many times, but recently I saw something new as I was meditating on it: “And he [the blind man], CASTING AWAY HIS GARMENT, rose, and came to Jesus” (Mark 10:50).
As I read that, my mind went back to when I took a Bible school course called “The Bible in the Light of Historical Events.” I learned from reading history that people on different social levels wore different colored robes, and if I remember correctly, if you were an outcast or a beggar, you wore a special color robe because that identified your role in society.
We wear other kinds of clothing today, but usually the kind of clothing people wear indicates their status. Often their clothing even tells you what their profession is. Someone will say, “There goes a nurse. There goes a doctor. There is a policeman. There is a fireman.” How did they know? Their uniform. We pick that knowledge up through their uniform.
Going back through history, you’ll find that Roman citizens wore different kinds of robes. Some signified that the citizen was a member of the Senate. Others indicated soldiers’ ranks. Today, the U.S. Army uniform may look alike on everybody, but to the trained eye, special insignia tell you that one person is a peon and another is a captain!
Meditating on types of dress throughout history, I suddenly understood something exciting about Bartimaeus. He wore garments that advertised “I am a beggar. I’m blind.” Notice that he cast these garments aside and left them in the dust when he went to Jesus!
Bartimaeus wasn’t going to need his beggar’s garments anymore. His actions showed his faith. Not only did he have faith to cry out to Jesus, but he left his garments by the side of the road, and the Bible doesn’t say anything about his going back and picking them up again. Instead, it says that he began to follow Jesus in the way.
Notice, too, that Jesus asked him a direct question in verse 51: “What wilt thou that I should do unto thee?” He expected an exact answer.
Today Jesus is still asking us what we want. We do not receive what we want, however, because the answer we often give Him is almost a riddle! We name so many things that our list goes on and on, and we never zero in on anything specific.
Think back to your childhood and the requests you made to your parents at Christmastime. You said, “I want this, and I want that, and I want the other!”
Your parents finally stopped you and asked, “What do you really want?” Why? Because you were going so fast they couldn’t even understand what you were saying. They wanted to know what you really wanted so they could provide it to you.
Jesus asked Bartimaeus, “What do you want?”
Now, Bartimaeus was blind. He was a beggar. He didn’t have anything. He could have started out by naming many things. He had a lot of needs. He could have said, “Well, I need clothes. I need money. I need a house. I need a donkey to ride on.” But Bartimaeus picked out the most important thing he needed; he zeroed in on his blindness.
If you want to receive from God today, pick out the things you need the most. (Most of us have a list 14 miles long.) Every day you live, your needs become more numerous. God is sufficient to supply all of your needs, but zero in on the things you need the most. Take care of them and then go down the list. But be logical. Bartimaeus was.
He figured he needed his sight more than anything else. If he could see, then he could do some kind of work that would earn his food, lodging, and clothing.
In this day and age there are many Christians going around saying, “I’m going to quit my job and live by faith.” Nonsense. You are going to quit your job and starve by faith.
Occasionally—and that means not very often, if ever—God might speak to somebody to live that way. But if I read the Word of God correctly, it says we are to work and take care of our families. And if we don’t provide for them, it says we are worse than an infidel!
1 TIMOTHY 5:8
8 But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.
I didn’t say it; that’s what the Bible says. Yet there are people saying, “I’m going to quit my job. I’m going to live by faith.” Their children are hungry. They can’t pay their bills. Their homes and cars are being repossessed. They don’t have any food. That is a stench in the nostrils of God, because it is contrary to what His Word says.
How did I get off on that subject? I was talking about believing God and having faith.
TODAY IS YOUR DAY
Bartimaeus cast his garments aside, demonstrating his faith, and he came to Jesus. He said, “I want to see.”
Jesus said, “Thy faith hath made thee whole.”
That was all there was to it!”
Notice that Bartimaeus had an occasion to listen to protocol by not calling out to Jesus, thereby missing his miracle. He had to do something about it or it would be gone.
Today is your day to call on God. We who are Christians can pray for you, but it is going to take you, with your own voice, calling out to Him.
Cast away your doubt and unbelief, like Bartimaeus cast away his ragged garments. It is God’s will to heal you and set you free from whatever holds you captive, whether it’s of spiritual, physical, or mental origin. The Word of God says so. The Word says it is His will for you to be healed.
You may say, “I don’t know if I am good enough to receive or not. I have been so and so. I have done such and such.” That is not what the Word says. The Word says to ask for forgiveness, accept that forgiveness, forget about your past, and go on. Cast away all of those things.
Paul said it another way: “ . . . Forgetting those things which are behind, . . . I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3:13–14).
Like Paul, if you have asked Jesus to forgive you, and if you have been born again by the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ, your past doesn’t exist. God has blotted it out. He doesn’t remember anything about it.
So you can cast all that aside. Like Bartimaeus, you can stand up and simply say, “Jesus, thou Son of God, have mercy on me.” (We say this because this is the time of the Gentiles.)
Only believe. That is what Bartimaeus did. He cast away everything. He said, “I believe.” Oh, it doesn’t say that here in Mark 10, but his actions reveal that Bartimaeus believed.
First, Bartimaeus called out. That was faith calling.
Second, Bartimaeus arose and left his garments behind as he went to Jesus. That was faith in action.
If you believe, you can receive. Not everybody was healed that day Jesus was teaching inside a crowded house— only the man who was let down through the roof. Why? Because he was the only one who had faith. He acted his faith, and that is why he received. The rest of the sick present that day didn’t believe, so they didn’t receive.
Your faith is what gets you into the kingdom of God through receiving the cleansing blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. Your faith is what gets you healed. Your faith is what gets you released from habits that have you bound.
The power of God is involved in it, but it takes your faith to release the power of God. That is why Jesus frequently told the people, “Thy faith hath made thee whole.” His power could not work without faith.
It’s like electricity in the natural realm. You show me where the light switches are in a room and let me turn them off, and let’s see how much light the light company can put in the room. The switches release the electricity so it can flow into the light bulb so that bulb can give us light.
If I turn those switches off, that power is still there. The switches allow the power to work.
That is what Jesus was talking about when He said, “Your faith hath made thee whole.” He wasn’t saying, “My power didn’t have anything to do with it.” He was saying, “My power was involved, but your faith was what released that power so it could come into action.” Let’s look again at Bartimaeus sitting on the roadside, begging. He probably was holding a cup. He probably was dirty and smelled because of the dust and dirt.
He couldn’t see a thing, but he heard something. “What is it?” he demanded, grabbing hold of a passerby. He shook him. “What is it?”
“Jesus is coming by.”
Bartimaeus’ mind reacted. “Jesus, the Son of David—the Messiah who has been prophesied of—is coming! Now is my time. Jesus! Jesus! Thou Son of David!”
They told Bartimaeus to be quiet. By this time the crowd was louder. Bartimaeus could tell Jesus and His disciples were close by. He probably stood up. “Jesus!”
Jesus said, “Bring him to Me.” When he left his place by the road, Bartimaeus peeled off those dusty old garments.
He left them there. He cast them away.
Jesus said, “What do you want?”
He said, “I want to see.”
Jesus said, “Thy faith hath made thee whole.”
You who are sitting in the dust of pain and sorrow; you who are bound by habits, diseases, and sicknesses; you who are sitting in the dust of sin—a Miracle is here! Today is your day.
Are you going to let Him pass by, or are you going to do something about it? It is up to you.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, we ministered a simple story from the Word of God to these people to inspire them to believe to receive. I thank You that Your power shall work as they begin to cast aside doubts, fears, and unbelief. I thank You that they shall receive as they begin to cry out, “Jesus, thou Son of God, I come to you now.” In Jesus’ Name. Amen.