Names in the Bible usually mean something significant. The meaning of Bartimaeus is ‘Son of Honour. Bartimaeus knew how to honour God and this opened the door to his healing.
I didn’t know much about honour until I joined my now church. Honour is such a big part of our culture. We stand for the Word of God and sometimes for the pastor.
We regularly give bouquets of flowers or chocolates to people and publicly declare how amazing they are. Honouring one another is one way to honour God.
In his book, ‘The Honour Key’ Ps Russel Evans says this about the lifestyle of Jesus.
‘Every miracle, every breakthrough…….happened when people honored what he carried…..or honored who He was’
I remember listening to a John Bevere teaching on honour. He points out that there are far more healings and breakthroughs in Africa than in our Western countries, because of honour.
When Africans listen to the Word from a preacher, they are on the edge of their seats, captivated by what God is saying.
They understand the meaning of honour, just like Bartimaeus in our series.
THE MEANING OF BARTIMAEUS IS…….HONOUR
Oftentimes when we come to church, we are late, we recline in our seats and sip coffee. We don’t even bring our Bibles to church anymore….
“No Christian wants to place limitations on God, but many of us unknowingly restrict His activity in our lives because we ignore a critical spiritual principle: Honor.” John Bevere
I was certainly challenged by this teaching. Does this ring true for you as well? I thought ‘how many times am I late for church?….’
If the meaning of the name Bartimaeus is honour, then let’s take a look at how Bartimaeus lives up to his name!
The meaning of Bartimaeus, honour, is revealed to us in 4 ways.
1. BLIND BARTIMAEUS BELIEVED BIG
Bartimaeus honoured Jesus by believing for something that matched His greatness. How many times do we limit God by asking for something too small?
We honour God when we believe Him for something impossible.
Mary and Martha wanted to ask Jesus for healing but Jesus had something much greater in store – a resurrection.
Have you considered that God may want to do far more than just heal your physical symptoms? He wants to make you whole. He wants to heal the parts of you that you perhaps don’t even recognise.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.
I remember when dr’s first told me that they couldn’t help me. My whole world sank and I thought my life was over.
But something in me arose (after a long time of deep depression). This was an opportunity for God to do something miraculous. My faith was then thrust up to the next level.
2. HE WAS CHRIST OCCUPIED
I wonder when the last time Bartimaeus ate was? When Esau was starving, he sold his birthright for a bowl of stew.
Being not just blind but a beggar, Bartimaeus could have asked Jesus for money or food but He held Him in such a high esteem, such things would devalue who He was.
I love that he had his eyes fixed upon who God was and what He could do for him. To ask Him for anything else devalues His miraculous power.
If Bartimaeus spent his time worried about what people thought about him, or had be been so wrapped up with his physical hunger, He would miss the opportunity.
The little foxes that spoil the vines.
Song of Solomon 2:15
How often do we get caught up in those issues which aren’t so important? The worry over the future, the hurt caused by people’s words or the fear of what people think of us.
All these things distract us from the amazing life God has for us. Bartimaeus rose above self-occupation and focused on Jesus.
Being Christ occupied is how we honour our God.
3. HE RISKED DISAPPOINTMENT
Have you ever prayed for something again and again and when you don’t receive you adapt your prayer and expectation to something a little more realistic?
We start to fear the disappointment and allow this to alter our expectation.
This is where those with chronic illness are at a disadvantage. Believing for the miraculous is easier when the illness is short term.
We don’t know how long Bartimaeus was blind. My suggestion is that he had been blind for many years, maybe from birth. Yet He still believed Jesus would heal him.
I challenge myself as I write this. After over 20 years of chronic nerve pain and believing God for a healing. Do I still really believe or have I just learnt to tolerate?
HE PURSUED JESUS
Bartimaeus called out to Jesus; he knew the meaning behind his name. Bartimaeus didn’t passively sit back and wait for Jesus to approach Him.
I love his persistence and his shameless faith. Pursuing God is one way to honour Him.
Oftentimes I hear people say things like ‘I’m waiting for God to heal me……It’s all God’s perfect timing…..If God is sovereign, He’ll heal me if He wants to…..’
Yet non of these are fair or accurate.
God wants you well more than you do, this is one of reasons Jesus died. See JESUS CLEANSES THE LEPER. IS HE WILLING TO HEAL YOU?
It’s therefore not really down to God as to whether you receive that healing or not. Our role is to actively pursue God and by doing so, expect and believe for the healing. This is honouring God.
Of course, there are plenty of people who do have such amazing and undiluted faith yet they still die or suffer years and years of illness. I don’t deny this. But it isn’t correct to say it was God’s will.
Things go wrong in the natural realm, often we don’t know why.
I wonder how many people would see a difference in their healing journeys if they stepped up their ability to honour God? Bartimaeus shows us the meaning of honour
So honor is attached to miracles. Honor is attached to breakthrough.
I pray you will actively believe Him for something completely awesome, despite disappointments, set backs and minor issues running the show. This is how we honour God.
Remember Jesus couldn’t do any miracles in Nazareth because they didn’t know the meaning of honour.
I hope this encourages you today.
There are more posts on our blind beggar Bartimaeus: