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Main Page The great Gospel of John Volume 6 GGJ06-23 Chapter

Chapter 23 - The Lord and His followers in Bethlehem. Healing and caring for many sick people.

23,1. But early on the Sabbath morning we left and went to Bethlehem. There was a celebration, and a large number of poor, infirm people afflicted with all sorts of evils, lay around outside the gates of the city and begged for alms.

23,2. Then Lazarus, who had gone with us, said: “Lord, look over there, so many poor people! And how miserable these people do look!”

23,3. I said: “There are many among them who were thrown into this misery and into this poverty by the Pharisees; and for that they are now allowed to beg. Punishments, sadness, annoyance and secret anger and rage have finally made them into such cripples. But I have now come here in order to help them bodily, so that they can earn their bread with their hands in future.”

23,4. Then some of them asked us for alms.

23,5. But I said to them: “Would you not rather earn your bread with your hands than beg here so pitifully?”

23,6. Then they all said: “Oh lord, whoever you may be, a thousand times more if we, as in the past, were healthy again! But just look at our feet and hands and judge for yourself whether we could now possibly be capable of any work!”

23,7. I said: “Yes, I see this quite well; But I only wanted to ask whether you would not prefer to be perfectly healthy and then prefer to work than to beg here so miserably!”

23,8. Then all said: “Oh, if only that would be possible, then we would immediately stand up and go away from here and look for work and bread!”

23,9. I said: “But do you know, today is the Sabbath, and it will not be considered decent to heal you of your many old evils!”

23,10. The poor said: “Lord, we are well-educated Jews – but we do not know anything about Moses ever forbidding a prophet to do a good deed on a Sabbath! If one even may look after a sick animal on the Sabbath, without having defiled the Sabbath by doing so, why then should a person not be helped if he can still be helped?! And why do the Pharisees run to the rich infirm even on the Sabbath, if they are also doctors at the same time?! They should know more than anyone whether they are thereby desecrating the Sabbath or not!”

23,11. I then said to them: “Your answer is good, and now I desire this and say: ‘All of you become fully healthy!’”

23,12. They then saw that their crippled limbs were quite straight and healthy again, and one of them whose right arm was missing below the elbow even received his arm again. That was a little too wonderful for those healed. And so one of them asked who I was, that My word could do such things that no doctor’s skills were able to do any longer.

23,13. I then said: “You will find that out another time – but for now stand up and go and seek work and bread!”

23,14. Then Lazarus said to them: “If you cannot find any work otherwise, then just go to Bethany; the lord of the great estate has work for hundreds!”

23,15. All of them got up, gave thanks and left.

23,16. The same sign of healing was performed again at the other six gates of the city; for the old city of David had seven gates, of which three were large and four were small. At the last great gate, however, we were stopped by three passing Pharisees who remonstrated that it was not appropriate to do such a thing on a Sabbath.

23,17. But those who had been healed, quickly rose and said to them with a very threatening look: “For ten long years we wretched lay in front of the gates and never did any of you asked us what was wrong, and even less so did any of you ever gave us alms – and now you want to criticize this true wonder savior for having given us back our straight and even sometimes missing limbs again?!

23,18. Did Moses then not command us to even give help to a sick cow on a Sabbath?! How much more then will it be commanded to help a suffering person on a Sabbath?! Now see that you move on – otherwise we will teach you to better understand and comprehend Moses!”

23,19. Here the three saw that it would not be very advisable to get involved in an exchange of words with the healed people, and they quickly went on their way. But those who had been healed gave thanks and then also quickly left for Bethany, as recommended by Lazarus. And so Lazarus, who with his very extensive property had long been lacking workers, received about one hundred and twenty workers, all of whom he could use quite well, and with whom he was not in danger that they might be enticed back by the clerics again, as was often the case.

23,20. We, however, also quickly left and headed for another place which lay about two hours’ distance from Bethany and was inhabited mostly by Greeks and Romans. We sought out a good inn there and entered.

Main Page The great Gospel of John Volume 6 GGJ06-23 Chapter