Jesus was on His way to Jerusalem to die. He knew this, of course. He friends walking beside Him were still a bit clueless, but they surely tasted the destiny in their trip. It hovered over every conversation in every village along the way.
When they cam to Jericho, a certain blind man sat begging beside the road. I love how the Bible points out this was a certain blind man. Not one of the dozen or so who gathered at the gates every day. But, a certain one.
Evidently, the thing that was special about Bartimaeus was his faith. When someone told him Jesus of Nazareth was passing by, this Son of Timaeus started shouting. He didn’t call Jesus Rabbi or Teacher. Instead he shouted, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
It’s as if he was saying, “I know who I am. A blind beggar, the son of a poor man. But I also know who you are! You are the Son of David, the promised Messiah. The One who the prophets told us would come!”
And Jesus, who was on His way to save the world, stopped. One man, alone in darkness, became the most important person of the day. Scribes and Pharisees could wait. Cleansing the Temple, eating with Lazarus, standing before Pilate, and suffocating on a cross would have their day. But, in this moment, Jesus, the Son of David, bent low to touch Bartimaeus.
The Bible says when the blind man received his sight, he immediately started following Jesus. Bartimaues would soon witness the most important days in the world’s history. And all because Jesus paused on His journey to answer the call of relationship.
And I think I’m too busy for coffee?