"AFTER this, there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem." 

This feast was the Passover, held every year, as the Lord had commanded Moses. 

"Now there is at Jerusalem, by the sheep market, a pool which is called in the Hebrew tongue, Bethesda, having five porches." A pool is a large place made to hold water. Sometimes it is cut in the rock, and sometimes dug in the ground, and walled up with stone and cement. 

Some of the pools about Jerusalem were several hundred feet in length and width and thirty or forty feet deep. The pool of Bethesda was smaller, and was not very far from the temple. As Jesus went down to this pool, he saw in the porches beside it a great number of people. Some of them were blind, some were lame, and some were withered with palsy. Among them Jesus noticed one man who had been in a very bad condition for thirty-eight years. 

Coming up to this man, our Lord said, "Wilt thou be made whole?" The man said, "Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool; but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me." It seems that, at certain times, the waters of the pool were disturbed, and whoever stepped in first was made well. So the man thought that Jesus meant to help him into the water in order that he might be cured; but Jesus said unto him, "Rise, take up thy bed, and walk." And the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked.

Now this miracle was done on the Sabbath; and the Jews said unto him that was cured, "It is the Sabbath day; it is not lawful for thee to carry thy bed. He answered them, He that made me whole, the same said unto me, Take up thy bed, and walk. Then asked they him, What man is that which said unto thee, Take up thy bed, and walk? And he that was healed wist not who it was; for Jesus had conveyed himself away, a multitude being in' that place. Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come upon thee. The man departed, and told the Jews that it was Jesus, which had made him whole. 

And therefore did the Jews persecute 

Jesus, and sought to slay him, because he had done these things on the Sabbath-day."

Jesus, however, told them that he followed his Father's example in all things, and since he had done nothing but what his Father approved, his actions must be right. 

He also said that they would see greater miracles than they had seen yet; for as God the Father has power to bring the dead to life, so he has given his Son power to do the same; and the time is coming when all that are in their graves shall hear the voice of the Son of God and come forth, they that have done good to have eternal life, and they that have done evil, to be condemned and destroyed. He then tried to show them what good cause they had for believing in him. They believed that John the Baptist was a holy man, and he had plainly told them that Jesus was the Son of God. They all believed in Moses, and Jesus exactly answered the description, which Moses had given of the Son of God. But the miracles, which Jesus performed gave still stronger proof that he was the Messiah. Yet these hardhearted Jews would not believe John nor Moses; neither would they be convinced by the wonderful miracles which they had seen Christ do. Jesus knew the reason very well. It was because they did not love God; and so they could not love his Son, nor receive him as their Saviour.