Moving from Religion to Rest
Jamie Hart   -  

John 4:43-5:17


43 After two days he left there for Galilee. 44 (Jesus himself had testified that a prophet has no honor in his own country. ) 45 When they entered Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him because they had seen everything he did in Jerusalem during the festival. For they also had gone to the festival.


46 He went again to Cana of Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine. There was a certain royal official whose son was ill at Capernaum. 47 When this man heard that Jesus had come from Judea into Galilee, he went to him and pleaded with him to come down and heal his son, since he was about to die. 48 Jesus told him, “Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will not believe.” 49 “Sir,” the official said to him, “come down before my boy dies.” 50 “Go,” Jesus told him,“your son will live.” The man believed what Jesus said to him and departed. 51 While he was still going down, his servants met him saying that his boy was alive. 52 He asked them at what time he got better. “Yesterday at one in the afternoon the fever left him,” they answered. 53 The father realized this was the very hour at which Jesus had told him,“Your son will live.” So he himself believed, along with his whole household. 54 Now this was also the second sign Jesus performed after he came from Judea to Galilee.



After this, a Jewish festival took place, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.

2 By the Sheep Gate in Jerusalem there is a pool, called Bethesda in Aramaic, which has five colonnades. 3 Within these lay a large number of the disabled ​— ​blind, lame, and paralyzed. 5 One man was there who had been disabled for thirty-eight years. 6 When Jesus saw him lying there and realized he had already been there a long time, he said to him,“Do you want to get well? ” 7 “Sir,” the disabled man answered, “I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, but while I’m coming, someone goes down ahead of me.” 8 “Get up,” Jesus told him,“pick up your mat and walk.” 9 Instantly the man got well, picked up his mat, and started to walk.

Now that day was the Sabbath, 10 and so the Jews said to the man who had been healed, “This is the Sabbath. The law prohibits you from picking up your mat.” 11 He replied, “The man who made me well told me,‘Pick up your mat and walk.’ ” 12 “Who is this man who told you,‘Pick up your mat and walk’ ? ” they asked. 13 But the man who was healed did not know who it was, because Jesus had slipped away into the crowd that was there. 14 After this, Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, “See, you are well. Do not sin anymore, so that something worse doesn’t happen to you.” 15 The man went and reported to the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well. 16 Therefore, the Jews began persecuting Jesus because he was doing these things on the Sabbath. 17 Jesus responded to them,“My Father is still working, and I am working also.”

Admit Your Need (4:46-47; 5:5-7)

Capernaum to Cana

“Sir…come down before my boy dies.”

A Confronting Question

“Do you want to get well?”

Believe The Word (4:48-54; 5:8-9)

“Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will not believe.” 

Are you mistaking the sign for the destination? 

The man believed what Jesus said to him and departed.

“Get up,” Jesus told him,“pick up your mat and walk.” 

How will you now live?

“Do not sin anymore…”

Consider The Cost (5:10-17)

…the Jews began persecuting Jesus because he was doing these things on the Sabbath.

Breaking the Sabbath or Creating the Sabbath? 

Sabbath & Substitution

2 Corinthians 5:20-21

We plead on Christ’s behalf, “Be reconciled to God.” He made the one who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

Will you REST in the healing presence of Jesus?

From the beginning we have been created to be receivers, not achievers. Nothing is more countercultural to contemporary Americans. We have been raised to set our goals high, work hard, and achieve our dreams. Clearly there is merit to this work ethic, but it has limits, and the greatest one is that it seduces us into thinking that we are the creators of our own destinies. The only destiny that comes from reaching for whatever we want is finding ourselves east of Eden. Every page of the Bible presents God as the achiever and us as the receivers of this sacred, good work. Every day this week you have to decide if you want to achieve your life or receive it. If you make achieving your goal, your constant companion will be complaint, because you will never achieve enough. If you make receiving the goal, your constant companion will be gratitude for all that God is achieving in your life. I’m not certain that there are such things as measures of our spirituality, but if there are, then gratitude is probably the best one. It indicates that we are paying attention.

– M. Craig Barnes