Today's Gospel is one that always makes me a little nervous. It's the story of a healing at "Bethesda," a pool with curative waters. Jesus encounters a man who has been ill for 38 years. Jesus, of course, knows that he has been ill a long time. Perhaps he has even seen this man, year after year, hanging around the pool waiting for his chance to be the first one in when the healing bubbles start to appear. But during that long wait, the man only gets hard of heart. He can't even accept the cure that Jesus gives him, because it comes at a cost: "Give up your sins," Jesus says, "so that something worse doesn't befall you."
Was it that unwelcome warning that induced the man to report Jesus to the authorities who were already looking for a way to be rid of him? No wonder Jesus had asked him, before the healing, "Do you want to be cured?"