Mark 10:46-52 tells us about the healing faith of a blind man, named Bartimaeus. My last post demonstrated the need to be specific when you pray, based on a parallel passage in Matthew 20:30-34. Matthew spoke of two blind men who cried out for mercy, and Jesus asking them what they wanted before He healed them. This passage in Mark also shows the need to be specific in our prayers, but it focuses in on just one of the two blind men, Bartimaeus.
That he was specifically named as “Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus” Mk10:46), indicates that he was probably well known in his day. Not only was he miraculously healed, but after he received his sight Bartimaeus immediately followed Jesus in the way (Mark 10:52). It is likely that Bartimaeus was still testifying about Jesus Christ, and His power to heal the blind, when Mark wrote his gospel.
Physical blindness may have reduced Bartimaeus to begging by the highway, but he could hear, and he listened. As a result, he had better spiritual insight than most who could see. Bartimaeus had heard about “Jesus of Nazareth.” Based on what he had heard, Bartimaeus believed that Jesus was the “Son of David.” He believed Jesus was the Messiah (the Christ) of God, so he addressed Him using His royal name. “Jesus, Thou Son of David, have mercy on me” (Mk 10:47).
Bartimaeus cried out from his darkness to the Savior he could not see. The crowd tried to silence the blind beggar, but he continued to cry out to the “Son of David” for mercy (Mk 10:48). Jesus heard his plea and called for him to “Come to Me” (Mk 10:49).
Having been called by Jesus, Bartimaeus believed he would be healed. He knew he would beg no more, so he threw his beggar’s cloak away as he excitedly arose and went to Jesus (Mk 10:50).
After he told Jesus specifically what he wanted, Jesus healed his eyesight saying, “Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole” (Mk 10:52). Bartimaeus already had the spiritual vision to recognize Jesus as the Messiah and trust Him to heal his physical sight. I suspect that when Jesus said his faith had made him “whole,” He was referring to more than just eyesight. I believe it included his soul.
The story doesn’t end there though. Jesus told Bartimaeus to go his way, but instead of going back to his life that day, he chose to follow Jesus in The Way. The former blind man became a witness of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, testifying of His power to heal eyes and save souls.