Faithlife Sermons


Who Do You Say I Am?  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  39:20
0 ratings
Sermon Tone Analysis
View more →
Bartimaeus may have been blind, but he could see.
Who Do You Say I AM?
I love the line of that video portrayal, “What amazed me the most was that it seemed like the people who could see the best were the most blinded...”
Bartimaeus may have been blind, but he could see.
But not Bartimaeus. He could see, and see well!

What could Bartimaeus see?

He could see his blindness and his need for mercy.
He could see his blindness and need for mercy.
He could see the promises of God for him in his situation.
He could see the One who would fulfill those promises.
But the people who could see the best… Those who studied God’s Word the most… Those who taught others what God’s Word had to say… Those who were the experts; the most educated… They were the ones who were the most blinded. They could not… No, the would not see Jesus for who He is.
The Big Question facing us today is…
The Big Question: Do you and I see
Do we see like Bartimaeus saw? Our need for mercy? The promises of God that would meet our need? The One in whom the promises are fulfilled?
A couple weeks ago, we were looking at .
1 Peter 2:2 NIV
Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation,
We talked about salvation being a gift of God. . God freely offers us the gift of new life, eternal life.
How do we receive that gift? Faith-- Believing Him.
We believe Him when He says, “You do things that I call wrong.” .
We believe Him when He says, “You deserve to be separated from me for all eternity.” .
We believe Him when He says, “Jesus died to take that punishment for you.” . .
We believe Him when He says, “The moment you believe, you are forgiven, and now are my child.” . .
We believe Him when He says, “You have been blessed with every spiritual blessing!” .
And, we believe Him when He says, “You have been born again. You have new life! Grow up in this salvation! Grow in your understanding, and in how you live this new life as my child!” . .
Faith is believing what God says. How do we know what He says? It is written in His Word, the Bible.
The homework challenge two weeks ago was to consider your personal situation, and seek out promises that relate to you in your situation.
Did you do it? Did you see your situation? Did you see your need? Not the thing you want, necessarily, but your need. For example, there have been times in my life that I felt I needed more money. Or, I needed this new thing… but what I needed was contentment. A hard lesson to learn, and one I need over and over again.
Did you do the homework? Did you see your need? Did you see that you could not earn what you needed? Did you see that you could not work for it? You could not possibly do something to attain this for yourself?
That really is the first step. That is where Bartimaeus was.
Bartimaeus saw his own need. He saw his blindness and His inability to do anything for this.
That may not have always been the case. He was in Jericho likely because he thought he could beat this. Blindness was more common in those days. It could be a physical defect, or more commonly due to infection of some sort, trauma, or cataracts and other ailments which are treatable now, but back then were not. There were no antibiotics such as they use in infants at birth, or for other infections.
However, in Jericho in those days were plants that are native to Arabia. These balsam plants were used to make a balm that was thought to be good for the eyes. So, it is likely Bartimaeus and his nameless companion were in Jericho originally to find a cure for their failing eyes.
However, they were not able to stop the blindness, nor to regain their sight. Can you imagine what it must have been like for Bartimaeus when he realized that he was blind, and there was nothing that could be done? Can you imagine the hopelessness? Can you imagine the depression he must have felt? No matter what he did, he could not beat this.

Bartimaeus saw his need for mercy.

He needed help. He saw His need for mercy.
Mercy is getting something you do not earn. There was nothing Bartimaeus could do to earn back his sight.
He saw his need for mercy. Hence, when he heard Jesus was walking by, he cried out… what? “Have mercy on me!”
We talked about the Word of God being that seed that was planted in us. Peter used that imagery in . The Word of God is a seed that God planted within us. That was His Gift to us. His work in us for our salvation. His Word is what let us know that we were sinners, we all do things that are wrong according to God’s standard. His Word is what tells us that the punishment for disobeying Him and His standards is death, eternal separation from Him. And, it is His Word that tells us that Jesus, who was fully God, came to earth to live as a man, and then to die in our place to take our punishment. It is His Word that tells us that Jesus rose again from the dead, having paid the penalty for sin, and offers new, eternal life to anyone who will believe Him when He says He wants to forgive them, and give them this eternal life with Him. Give them, not because they deserve it, but because He wants to give it.
When someone hears that message from the Word of God, it is like a seed being sown. Some people receive it. That is the moment of salvation! That is the moment the gift is opened! That gift is all we need for eternal life! That gift is new life! New knowledge of Him! We have already received every spiritual blessing from God according to . There is nothing left to receive! However, there is the growing up to be done, so that we can handle it properly.
Bartimaeus saw his need for mercy.
Back to our Big Question: Do you and I see?
Do you see? Do I see? Do we see our need for mercy? Do I see that I do not deserve help in this situation? Do I see that I am the worst of all sinners? I tend to want to see everyone around me as sinners. They are picking on me! They are … fill in the blank. I do not see myself as the worst of sinners. I see the other guy as the worst of sinners.
I need to realize that I am truly the worst of sinners. I am not worthy of receiving anything. I could not possibly earn what I need to get through. I am so far in the whole, there is not way out!
The first thing I need to see is that I don’t deserve anything. The world wants to tell me that I deserve. God is truthful enough to tell me I don’t deserve. Which voice am I going to listen to?
I need to see my need for mercy. Do you see your need for mercy?
Bartimaeus saw it. But that is not the only thing he saw.

Bartimaeus saw the promises of God.

Bartimaeus would have heard from the story of Moses. He would have heard how Moses knew himself to be inadequate, but how he had to learn to rely on God.
Exodus 4:11–12 NIV
The Lord said to him, “Who gave human beings their mouths? Who makes them deaf or mute? Who gives them sight or makes them blind? Is it not I, the Lord? Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say.”
Exodus 4:
He would have heard how the Psalmist also referred to the LORD as the only one who could heal the blind.
Psalm 146:8 NIV
the Lord gives sight to the blind, the Lord lifts up those who are bowed down, the Lord loves the righteous.
He would have heard how God promised the Messiah, the descendant of David who would be able to give sight to the blind in Isaiah.
Isaiah 35:5–6 NIV
Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then will the lame leap like a deer, and the mute tongue shout for joy. Water will gush forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert.
He would have also heard how the Psalmist declared that the King would show mercy, the very thing he needed.
Psalm 72
Psalm 72:12–13 NIV
For he will deliver the needy who cry out, the afflicted who have no one to help. He will take pity on the weak and the needy and save the needy from death.
Bartimaeus heard the promises in the word of God. He not only heard them… He saw them as truth! He believed what he heard! He knew the promises for his situation, and he believed them!
That is why when he heard that Jesus was walking by, he started crying out! “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
He had heard the promises. And, he had obviously heard of Jesus. Jesus had been ministering for three years. There were numerous healings, including healings of those who were blind. People were talking. People knew what Jesus was doing.
Last week we talked about Jesus question to His disciples, “Who do people say I am?” He asked because people had ideas. They had heard of Him, and the authority with which He taught. They heard of the things He taught. They heard of the miracles He performed. And, they were talking among themselves, “Who is He?” “Is He the Messiah?” “Is He a false prophet?” “The priests and pharisees don’t believe He is.” “Or, do the priests believe? They haven’t killed Him!?” “His own family don’t accept Him.” There were a lot of voices.
Bartimaeus could not get around by himself. But he could hear the talk. He heard the voices. Which ones did He listen to? He listened to the voice of all Jesus did and taught! He listened so well, that He believed! Jesus is who He claimed to be! God! Messiah! The One who could give sight to the blind! The One who would show mercy!

Bartimaeus saw the One in whom the promises were fulfilled!

That is why he cried out, “Lord!” That is why he cried out, “Son of David!”
He truly believed that Jesus could and would give sight to the blind. The only one who could do that is God!
He truly believed that Jesus was the Messiah, the descendant of David! He was the King who would show mercy!
The promises are just words until someone is there that can carry them out. And, now, here He is. Jesus. The fulfiller of the promises. Jesus. The One who shows mercy to those who do not deserve it. Jesus the One, the God, the gives sight to the blind!
He saw and believed so much so, that when the voices around him told him to be quiet, he cried out even louder, “Jesus. Lord, Son of David, have mercy!”
Bartimaeus saw, his need for mercy.
Bartimaeus saw God’s promises for his situation.
Bartimaeus saw Jesus, the One in whom promises are fulfilled.
The big question is still,

Do you and I see our need? God’s promises? Jesus, the God in whom we find mercy and fulfillment?

Related Media
Related Sermons