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Get Up! Pick Up Your Mat and Walk

Rev. Charles Oppong-Poku | March 20, 2024 | John 5:7-9



⁸ Then Jesus said to him, "Get up! Pick up your mat and walk." ⁹ At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked. The day on which this took place was a Sabbath. John 5:8-9 (NIV)

MESSAGE: In John 5:7-9, Jesus encounters a man paralysed for thirty-eight years near the Pool of Bethesda. When Jesus asked, "Do you want to get well?" the paralyzed man responded by lamenting his unfortunate circumstances, expressing his helplessness to Jesus. He lacked not the desire for healing but the means for healing – without strength and friends to assist him into the pool. Despite enduring thirty-eight years of failure, the paralysed man demonstrated remarkable perseverance, refusing to give up hope.


“Pick up your mat and walk." This was an unusual order to a paralyzed person yet faith must be tried to be proven true. Thus, the walk of faith must begin before the healing rushes in. Jesus' command to the paralyzed man goes beyond a mere offer of healing, it is a call to action. By instructing the man to take up his mat and walk, Jesus challenged him to embrace his healing and to move forward into a new chapter of life. The man obeyed Jesus' command and was instantly healed. The man was healed at once, perfectly, and wholly. He was not healed in a matter of degrees but rather miraculously to the highest degree of bodily strength – from not being able to turn himself over to carrying his bed simply on the strength of Christ’s Word. Just like this disabled man found himself restored to wholeness Jesus desires to restore us to wholeness as well.


Jesus' command to the paralysed man is also an invitation to walk in faith. It is a call to trust in Jesus' power and to step out in obedience, even when the path ahead seems uncertain. It challenges us to believe in the possibility of new beginnings and to walk boldly in the direction that Jesus leads us.


FEET AND HANDS FOR THE MESSAGE: How many years have you dealt with no success regarding your weaknesses and infirmities? How often have you tried in your disabled strength to rid yourself of fleshly behaviours only to discover that you are yet once again wallowing in the mud? When we can do nothing, Jesus can do all things. Jesus came to liberate us from the bondage of self, sin and death – to free us to live in freedom not yoked to slavery again.



Heavenly Father, thank you for the many lessons I can learn from the Word of Truth. I pray that as I journey through life, I may not miss any precious encounters with Christ along the way. Help me respond to your invitation to walk in faith by trusting in Jesus’ power and stepping in obedience even when the path ahead seems uncertain. This I ask in Jesus' name, AMEN.




DAILY word study: GET UP In John 5:8-9 (NIV), the phrase "Get up" is translated from the Greek word "ἔγειρε" (egeire), which means "rise" or "arise." It is a command given by Jesus to the paralyzed man to stand up and take action. This word not only signifies physical movement but also carries spiritual implications, suggesting a call to action and a transformational change in the man's life. In commanding the paralyzed man to "Get up," Jesus not only offers physical healing but also invites him to participate actively in his own restoration. It reminds us that while God's healing and deliverance are freely given, our faith and obedience play a crucial role in experiencing the fullness of His blessings. Just as the man responded to Jesus' command with faith and action, we are called to trust in Christ's power to bring about change in our lives and to step forward in obedience, believing that He will guide us into wholeness and abundance


How can we respond to Jesus' call to "Get up" in our lives, stepping out in faith and taking action to embrace the new life and opportunities He offers us?

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The Baptist Daily Devotional is a collection of God-inspired messages that will help you grow in your faith and walk with Christ. Each day, you will find a scripture passage, a reflection, a prayer and a challenge to apply God's word to your life. The devotional is written by pastors and leaders of the Ghana Baptist Convention, who share their insights and experiences from serving God in various contexts and ministries. For example, you will learn how to trust God in times of trouble, how to share the gospel with others, how to pray effectively, how to deal with temptation, how to handle conflict and more. Whether you are a new believer or a mature Christian, the Baptist Daily Devotional will inspire you, encourage you and equip you to live for God's glory.
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