Asking for help isn’t something that most people enjoy doing. We like to think that we can do it ourselves, whatever “it” is. You notice this even in small children as they are learning to do things for themselves. They often don’t want help, saying “no Mom! I can do it!” even when they are actually doing “it” wrong. More often than we would want to admit though, we do need help. Pride says to do it yourself, but wisdom would tell you to find someone that can help. We are going to look at an individual who realized that he needed help and decided to ask for the help that he needed.
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
Four things to notice about Bartimaeus
1. His Blind Condition
The first thing that you must do in order to receive the help that you need, is to realize what your individual need is: Bartimaeus was blind. Without Jesus as your saviour, you are Spiritually blind:
Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not; But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God. But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake. For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. - 2 Corinthians 4:1-6
You will need to face your need. Ignoring your need, or acting like it doesn’t exist, will not change your situation. Without Jesus, you are not only Spiritually blind, but you are without hope in the world:
That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: - Ephesians 2:12
Without Jesus, you are dead in your sins and are a child of wrath. That means that the wrath of God abides on you until you are Spiritually born again, by accepting Jesus as your Lord and Saviour:
And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: - Ephesians 2:1-6
2. His Cry for Help
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. - Mark 10:47-49
Next, you must be willing to seek the help that you need for your condition. Some people never ask for the help that they need. They don’t ask for help because of the opposition that they receive. Bartimaeus received some opposition when he asked for help. In this crowd were both believers and unbelievers alike. You will find, when you decide to ask for help and when you decide to deal with your Spiritual condition, that people will come out of the woodwork and have advice for you. These are the people who previously didn’t seem to give a second thought to your Spiritual condition, but now they want to be involved. You will notice that in this situation the “crowd” told him to be quiet until the Lord got involved, then all of the sudden they wanted to be involved as well. This is to be expected from unbelievers, but unfortunately, we notice from this text, that there were also believers, and especially the disciples that were involved in standing between Bartimaeus and Jesus.
Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame. - 1 Corinthians 15:34
Sometimes, the thing that stands in opposition to a person coming to faith, are the believers themselves. Paul tells believers that they need to awake to righteousness. We know that we are not saved by doing good works, but at the same time, we are called to do good works (Ephesians 2:8-10). The way that we live our lives will affect our personal relationship with the Lord, and it will possibly affect the relationship that others in our area of influence seek to have with him as well. Don’t be a part of the crowd that stands in the way of someone coming to the Lord for help.
Acknowledge who Jesus is
In order to properly come to Jesus for the help that you need, you must acknowledge who he is. Bartimaeus cried out to Jesus the Son of David. He was acknowledging who Jesus is, the rightful King of Israel. We also need to acknowledge who Jesus is:
And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory. - 1 Timothy 3:16In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. - John 1:1-6
Jesus is God manifest in the flesh. He isn’t just a good man who did some good and nice things back somewhere in history. He is the creator, He is God, He is the only hope of salvation that you have. He is the only one who can forgive you for your sin. This needs to be acknowledged to receive the help that you so desperately need.
Acknowledge what Jesus can do
Bartimaeus realized that Jesus could fix his need. The entire reason that Jesus came, was to fix our need. The only reason that it was necessary for the creator to humble himself and take on the form of a man, was to fix our need. We can’t fix it ourselves. It didn’t matter what Bartimaeus tried to do for himself, he could not recover his own sight; only Jesus could. In the same way, it doesn’t matter what we do, we cannot fix our spiritual need ourselves; Only Jesus can.
This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.- 1 Timothy 1:15
The reason Jesus came was to save us from our situation, to fix our condition and to help us in our need:
Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father: To whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. - Galatians 1:3-5
Acknowledge the unique opportunity that Jesus provides
Bartimaeus realized that this was his opportunity to have his need fixed once and for all. He didn’t want this opportunity to slip through his fingers.
(For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.) - 2 Corinthians 6:2The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. - 2 Peter 3:9
Acknowledge the urgency to respond
Jesus came by his way today! There was no guarantee that Jesus would pass by ever again. There was no promise of a better time to respond, or an easier time to respond (a time without all the opposition). The time to respond is now:
Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. - Isaiah 55:6-7
Seek the Lord while he may be found! He wants to pardon you for all of your sins, but don’t wait. The opportunity may pass you by and that is not a gamble that you want to take!
3. His response to the call of the Lord
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. - Mark 10:49-50
His response was immediate. When he received the call to come to the Lord, he did not delay. He immediately stood up and threw his garment (his covering) off. The garment here is a “type” of our self-righteousness. The garment is the thing that you are covering yourself with to provide protection and security. The things that we cover ourselves with, our good works and the like are worthless in the eyes of the Lord:
But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. - Isaiah 64:6
Bartimaeus realized that the covering that he provided for himself was not good enough. Notice that he didn’t gently take off this garment and fold it up nice and neat so that it would be available for him to use again. He cast it off, he threw it down not caring what happened to it, because he wasn’t ever coming back to it.
Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; - Titus 3:5For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast - Ephesians 2:8-9Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. - Galatians 2:16
His response was also specific. Jesus asked him what he wanted (Mark 10:51). Jesus doesn’t ask you what your needs are because he doesn’t know. He asks because he wants you to acknowledge the need for yourself.
If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. - 1 John 1:8-10That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. - Romans 10:9-10
4. His faith made him whole
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 only way in for you to be whole, that is to be justified and to receive peace with God, is by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. We are justified by placing our faith not in ourselves and what we can do, not by placing our faith in the government or relationships or anything else, but by placing our faith in the finished work of Jesus.
Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. - Romans 5:1-9In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, - Ephesians 1:13
If you have not been born again, admit your need and ask for the help that only Jesus can provide. Don’t be one of those that refuse to admit your need or refuse to cry for help.
If you are saved today, will you help people to see their need? Will you help people to find the help that is offered to them a free gift? Will you do your part and help to draw people to the Lord? Or will you be part of the crowd that stands in opposition?
Our hope at Irvington Bible Baptist Church is that this podcast provided some encouragement and has helped you to develop a closer relationship with the LORD Jesus Christ.