Luke 18:36

ESV And hearing a crowd going by, he inquired what this meant.
NIV When he heard the crowd going by, he asked what was happening.
NASB But when he heard a crowd going by, he began inquiring what this was.
CSB Hearing a crowd passing by, he inquired what was happening.
NLT When he heard the noise of a crowd going past, he asked what was happening.
KJV And hearing the multitude pass by, he asked what it meant.
NKJV And hearing a multitude passing by, he asked what it meant.

What does Luke 18:36 mean?

Bartimaeus, son of Timaeus (Mark 10:46), is a beggar on the side of the road near Jericho. He and his companion are both blind (Matthew 20:30). It's normal for them to hear a crowd right now. It's nearly Passover when every Jew tries to reach Jerusalem. Jews in Perea and Decapolis, on the east side of the Sea of Galilee, come down the Jordan or up the eastern shore of the Dead Sea to the crossing just east of Jericho. Jews in Galilee have a choice: cross the Jordan near the Sea of Galilee and follow the travelers south or walk across Samaria. Many choose the former.

So, this spot is a good one for two blind beggars, especially since Passover is a traditional time for giving alms to the poor. But this crowd sounds a little different; it's a great crowd (Mark 10:46). So, Bartimaeus asks passers-by what's going on.

They answer, "Jesus of Nazareth is passing by" (Luke 18:37). Bartimaeus knows that name. From all he's heard, this Jesus is the promised fulfillment of God's covenant with David—He's the Son of David! Apparently, Bartimaeus has also heard that Jesus can heal. He boldly shouts, "Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!" The crowd tries to hush him up. Perhaps they assume that if he's blind, God must be punishing him for sin (John 9:1–2). But Jesus hears him, asks what he wants, and heals him (Luke 18:37–43).
What is the Gospel?
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