Why God Is Near to Them
shâbar to break, break in pieces, break, break in or down, rend violently, wreck, crush, quench
“Yehovah is near to the broken of heart; and He saves the crushed of spirit.” Psa 34:18 LITV
In Part 1 we learned that the form of “broken of heart” is a Niphal or passive stem that is a participle, or ongoing action. It is the “being broken of heart ones” in an ongoing sense.
And we saw that Yah is near because becoming or being broken takes away our pretenses.
Everyone on our planet has been broken somehow. The differences are not so much in how the breaking came about, in what particular way it came, but in how the healing comes and who the Healer is. When, and not if, the breaking happens, and what happens because of the breaking makes all the difference to the outcome and the possibility of joining The Fellowship of the Brokenhearted.
Yeshua was walking through the area of the Sheep Gate Pool in Jerusalem, known in Aramaic as Bethesda. There was a multitude there, “blind, lame, paralytics” and others who had lost all things but hope. There was a legend that an angel would come and stir the water and the first one in was healed.
There was one there who had been an invalid for 38 years. Thirty-eight years ago is 1983. What were you doing (if you are 38 years old or older) in 1983?
John 5:6 records “Seeing him lying, and knowing that he had already spent much time, Jesus said to him, ‘Do you desire to become well?’” LITV
What? He has been lying right there for who knows how long, and the man is still there hoping for his chance. If he wasn’t hoping for his chance, he likely would have left long ago and found another place to lay on his mat and beg. “Do you desire to become well?”
“To become well” is in the Greek γενεσθαι genesthai. If it sounds a bit like Genesis you have the flavor. It is a form of the verb γ νομαι ginomai which means “to begin to be” and it is a participle, which is a kind of verbal noun that is ongoing in its action. “Do you wish to begin to be becoming well?”
This verb is used in the Septuagint throughout Genesis including Genesis 50:20 where Joseph says to his family, “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.” ESV “to bring it about. . .”
How long was that “bring it about”? It was the rest of their lives, the lives of their children and grandchildren for generations. That is a lot of bringing it about, with results that went on and on and on. Not in an instant, not like grabbing lunch at a fast food place and being handed a finished product in a paper sack out the window and into yours. You received it at a cost but did none of the work.
No, not like that at all. “Do you wish to begin to be becoming well?”
When God binds up our wounds, that is just the start. Even if he heals your emotions in an instant, now you have to begin learning to live with healed emotions. Yes, the old ones will creep back in, like Ezekiel’s dead bones trying to stand on their own. But they will present themselves to you and rattle and make noise and you have to put them down again. “Do you wish to begin to be becoming well?”
This same word is also used in John 1:14 where “the Word became (ginomai) flesh, or began to be being flesh. He was formed in Mary’s womb, was born, had his diapers changed, learned to walk, learned to speak (think about that!), learned to be a craftsman, memorized Torah, learned how to interact with others, learned to communicate including with his Father in heaven, and learned to live on planet earth. I can almost hear the Father asking, “Do you wish to begin to be becoming flesh?”
Here in John, the Hebrew equivalent is לבׁש / לבׁש lâbash / lâbêsh which means to clothe, put on clothing, be clothed. He began to be being clothed with flesh.
“And you shall take the garments, and you shall clothe Aaron with the tunic, and the robe of the ephod, and the ephod, and the breast pocket. And you shall bind it to him with the band of the ephod.” Exodus 29:5 LITV Aaron was named the High Priest but he spent his life learning what that meant.
“The LORD builds up Jerusalem; he gathers the outcasts of Israel. He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” Psa 147:2-3 How long did it take to build up Jerusalem?
And so the process begins. How much of the healing did the lame man at the Pool at the Sheep Gate receive? All of it for John records “And at once the man was healed, and he took up his bed and walked.” Joh 5:14a
Now he had to accept the healing and begin to function like a healed person. No more begging, no more waiting, now learning how to have been being healed. And that learning includes 5:14 where Yeshua says, “See, you are well! Sin no more, that nothing worse may happen to you.” And so the healing and the Fellowship of the Brokenhearted begins.
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