In the healing of the crippled man at Bethesda (John 5:1-16), the man clearly desires to be healed, but no one would help him down to the pool (verse 7). The Bible's mention of this detail is an intentional rebuke of the heartlessness and meanness of human nature. It was every man for himself.
Despite the man's frustration, he still maintains good manners by acknowledging Jesus as "Sir." This word, the Greek kurios, appears over 700 times in the New Testament. Hundreds of times it is translated as "Lord" or "lord," but as "Sir" only about a dozen times. The term shows respect and honor for Christ. In today's society, we see quite a contrast to this example. The opposite attitude is usually present when people address each other, and even when children address parents.
Martin G. Collins
The Miracles of Jesus Christ: Healing a Cripple by a Pool (Part Two)
The healed man tells the critics that Jesus had made him whole, or healed him, dismissing their question about who had told him to carry the bed. The Jewish critics had emphasized his carrying the bed, but the healed man (after Christ's revelation of Himself to him) put the emphasis on the Healer, suggesting which was more important. The spiritual priority was the healing, the work of Christ.
When people criticize God the Father, His Son Jesus Christ, and the church, it is often because they have trouble recognizing what is truly important. Ignoring God's grace and mercy, they instead focus on a supposed violation of law, usually one they have perverted or made up, as the Pharisees did. They attack the Word of God, ignoring its important messages, and focus on picky, alleged discrepancies or fine points of the letter of the law. We must have the right priorities clearly in our minds if we are to serve and revere the sovereign God acceptably and diligently.
Martin G. Collins
The Miracles of Jesus Christ: Healing a Cripple by a Pool (Part Three)
Jesus' healing of the crippled man beside the pool called Bethesda is one of nine healing miracles involving water and one of seven performed on the Sabbath. Only the apostle John records it (John 5:1-16). It is impossible to be sure when the miracle occurred other than it happened on a Sabbath day.
John's reference to "a feast of the Jews" (John 5:1) rather than a "feast of the Lord" (Exodus 12:14; Leviticus 23:2, 37) illustrates the spiritual decline that had occurred among the Jews regarding God's feast days. People may typically start out with God being central to their worship, but they end up getting in the way and become the main focus themselves. The people had made this festival a feast of the people instead of continuing it as God's feast.
In His journey from Galilee to Jerusalem, Jesus expended a considerable amount of effort to be there in time for this Sabbath. In doing this, He set an example in terms of spiritual priorities and the sacrifices involved in putting spiritual matters first. Some Christians are unclear about spiritual priorities, desiring a convenient religion that requires little inconvenience and no sacrifice. Frequently, those who complain most about not getting enough out of church are often those who attend sporadically and involve themselves the least in church activities. Jesus, on the other hand, took great pains to fellowship and to help the people, especially on the Sabbath.
Martin G. Collins
The Miracles of Jesus Christ: Healing a Cripple by a Pool (Part One)
Other Forerunner Commentary entries containing John 5:15: