“Then they came to Jericho. As Jesus and his disciples, together with a large crowd, were leaving the city, a blind man, Bartimaeus (that is, the Son of Timaeus), was sitting by the roadside begging. When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, ‘Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!’ Many rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more.” —Mark 10:46-48
When it comes to the obnoxious, Bartimaeus would take the prize. He must have carried on and made quite a scene because it says many rebuked him. But instead of putting a lid on it, Bartimaeus yelled all the more.
The blind man’s tenacity and insistence caused the Lord to stop. But at that point, Jesus did not address Bartimaeus. First, He had a thing or two to say to the people who were trying to shove the blind man aside. Jesus tells them to call to Bartimaeus and then bring him forward. Boy, did those people change their tune fast. Suddenly, the guy was given the VIP treatment. “Cheer up!” they said to Bartimaeus.
Once these people understood that Jesus thought this poor handicapped person was important, once they realized the Lord’s priorities, their whole attitude toward the obnoxious social outcast switched from negative to positive.
Handicapped people in wheelchairs may track dirt on the church carpet. Homeless people might leave trash in the stairwell at the back of the sanctuary. Runaway teenagers who come to Sunday service in torn jeans and shaved heads may leave a bad smell in the pew. Do these people seem obnoxious? Maybe. But read Mark 10:46-48 to see how Jesus would handle the situation.
Lord, I love the fact that after Bartimaeus was healed, he followed You along the road. Help me to bring Your healing touch to those the world casts aside.