Jesus is the compassionate king, distracted even from his biggest mission by one man in need.
1. What stops you in your tracks? For example if you’re on your way to something, or have something important to do, what distracts you from your task?
(E.g. a TV programme, a pretty face, a text message, chocolate!)
2. What two words would you use to describe Jesus? (If you had to be as comprehensive as possible, what two words might cover most of the bases?)
What Does The Passage Say?
1. What is the scene here?
Jesus is on his way from Jericho to Jerusalem with a large crowd following.
2. What stops Jesus?
3. Who is Bartimaeus?
4. How is Jesus described?
5. How do people respond in the story: Jesus? The Crowds? Bartimaeus?
What Does The Passage Mean?
6. What does the phrase “Son of David” mean?
This is the Hebrew term for the coming Messiah as foretold in the Old Testament (see 2 Samuel 7, Psalm 89:3, 4.) It highlight’s Jesus’ kingship
7. What happened just before and just after this passage?
You can draw out Christ’s servanthood from the previous passage. From the following passage draw out his Kingship from how the crowds responded to him). You could also draw out that Jesus was en route to the Cross in Jerusalem.
8. Why did Jesus stop?
You could highlight Jesus’ compassion since Bartimaeus twice said “Son of David, have mercy on me.” And the fact he was probably fairly focused on the Cross ahead at the time. But his compassion for the man took his mind off even his great mission to die on the cross.
9. Why did the crowds rebuke Bartimaeus at first?
We can only speculate. Perhaps they only had eyes for the glory, popularity, kingship of Jesus.
Jesus is king, he’s got the crowds with him, he’s popular and has an important job to do in Jerusalem. But he pauses for a “loser”. This is because of Jesus compassion and because of that “loser’s” faith.
10. What two words describe Jesus in this passage?
e.g. Compassionate King; Merciful Messiah
11. What can we learn from Bartimaeus?
e.g. Honour Jesus as the Messiah; put our faith in him; expect him to be compassionate.
12. Who are the Bartimaeus’s in our world (i.e. people the crowd ignores or rebukes, or people in need)?
13. How does God want us to respond to them?
When we are swept along by popularity or an important task, keep compassion on our radar. Rather than get caught up in the crowd, stop for the needy; let compassion be what distracts us.