Those who led the way rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” Luke 18:39 (NIV)
Blind Bartimaeus experienced probably the greatest battle of his life when the crowd stood between him and his deliverance. He had been told that Jesus of Nazareth was passing by and was convinced of His mercy to restore his sight. Though desperate and had faith for deliverance, Bartimaeus’ disability itself wouldn’t allow him to run a meaningful race to meet Jesus. There was no time for him to plan or seek help. Self-pity was also not an option because it had never delivered a result. Bartimaeus resolved to shout, calling on Jesus to have mercy on him.
Ironically, those who led the procession that would have helped Bartimaeus only compounded his problem. They rebuked and told him to be quiet. It is better imagined than being the blind man in a dispute with many that he couldn’t see. However, their opposition was no match for the determination of the man that was tired of being in the dark and desperate to see. Bartimaeus shouted all the more until he caught the attention of the Lord Jesus. His determination paid off at last. Jesus answered him and restored his sight.
Every wise believer should be ready to meet the Lord without prior notice. The Lord’s Day (of blessing or judgment) will come unexpectedly just as it met Bartimaeus without warning. Battles often come without prior notice. Whenever it is won, it results in exceptional testimonies else one becomes a victim of ridicule. Contentions with enemies not seen are difficult but the cry of every genuine seeker for God’s mercy will not go unanswered. It is true that Bartimaeus couldn’t see but God granted him a good tongue because He wouldn’t leave His children completely helpless.
The people that led the way did not give Bartimaeus the impression that they were of the same mind with Christ because they made it difficult for the helpless to reach the Saviour. It is possible that they were engrossed in the protocols of the parade until they missed the mark. Every co-labourer with Christ should be vigilant and avoid being a hindrance to God’s visitation for others. Beloved, persistent call to Jesus is the only remedy to unseen and/or unforeseen battles. It was the weapon that Bartimaeus used to overcome all odds and secured his freedom irrespective of the number of the adversaries. His perseverance challenges my fighting spirit for a breakthrough. It is an excellent example of faith and actions at work.