But they came to Jericho. And as he was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a great crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind beggar, the son of Timaeus, was sitting by the roadside. [Mark 10:46; ESV]
Isn't that information life-changing? Look at it: Timaeus was Bartimaeus' dad. Hearing that information just changes your whole perspective on life and opens the mysteries of long ago. Or, if you are like me, you have wondered why Mark even mentions Timaeus at all. I know that a reason is to bring credibility to the story. I'm sure that many people accept this as true and are satisfied with this as the main reason. However, I don't think that is main reason. Here is what I think it is: Timaeus is mentioned to remind us that Bartimaeus was a person. The blind beggar, ignored by so many, was a person. He was somebody's boy. And he was ignored. He was forgotten, until he screamed out for mercy from Jesus and was healed.
This made me stop in my tracks a couple of weeks when God opened up this passage to me. It made me stop and think about how many sons and daughters I pass by on a regular basis, who are in desperate need of the touch of Jesus, because I'm so busy trying to hear what Jesus is saying rather than putting into practice the things that he has already said. It is so easy to be one of those in the crowd that followed Jesus. As he walked, Jesus would have taught, for that is what Rabbi's would do as they traveled with their disciples. The people would have been running ahead to try to hear every word of Jesus. The only problem is that there is the blind guy in the back just screaming at the top of his lungs, asking for Jesus to have mercy on him. So I tell him to shut up because we're trying to have a Bible study, all the while missing the main reason that we have Bible study: to do the very things that Scripture teaches. Jesus stopped the "parade" for the blind beggar because no one else would. He stopped because he had to. His disciples, and I'm speaking of the ones of today, should be the ones walking through the parade to find the ones who need to be touched by Jesus instead of running at the front of the parade only to hear him. Because honestly: if I were dead and gone, and one of my boys was begging and screaming for mercy, I would be screaming from heaven for someone to reach out to him and help.
I know that someone out there will say that I am stating that hearing Jesus is not important. That is not what I'm saying. However, I am saying that to hear what Jesus says and then to fail to do what he says is a waste. In fact, it's sin. How often had these people seen Jesus heal people? How often had they seen him do the miraculous? And then when an opportunity to reach out to someone to be healed by Jesus comes a long, they tell the beggar to shut up so that they could hear what Jesus was saying.
Timaeus is a reminder to me that the people that so often go unnoticed by me are sons and daughters of someone. They are people, not projects. They are souls in need of a Savior. They all have names They are fearfully and wonderfully made by the Creator of all things. My prayer is that every time I begin to walk by someone that I normally wouldn't notice, that Timaeus would come to my mind as a reminder that they are a person with a name and a story.