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The Pool of Siloam | Bible Trek – Jerusalem in the New Testament Series – 03

On numerous occasions, Jesus clashed with the religious authorities for healing on the Sabbath. Here at the Pool of Siloam, Jesus and his disciples encountered a blind man. Jesus made a mud paste using dirt and his saliva and wiped it on the blind man’s eyes. As he washed his eyes in the pool of water, his sight was wonderfully restored. 

Quick read

John 9.1–16

In a nutshell

‘Whose sin caused him to be born blind?’ John 9.2


The ancient Pool of Siloam, mentioned in John’s Gospel, was unearthed by archaeologists only fairly recently. In Jesus’ day, it served as a freshwater reservoir for the people of Jerusalem and for pilgrims who visited the city during the three great annual festivals of Judaism. The stone steps allowing access to the water can still be seen today.

The pool was fed by the Gihon Spring, which in turn was channelled through Hezekiah’s Tunnel. Formerly, King Hezekiah had initiated the construction of the tunnel, to ensure the water supplies stayed intact while Jerusalem was under siege from Assyrian armies. 

Jesus didn’t clash with the religious leaders because of curing a blind man, but because he had done so on the Sabbath, the Jewish day of rest. This reflects disputes at the time about what you could, or could not, do on the Sabbath. 

The film Moneyball tells the real-life story of the Oaklands A’s, a struggling baseball side that had no way of competing against big-budget teams. Fed up of losing, the team’s manager flipped the game on its head by adopting a new philosophy. His new way of seeing the game through analytics saw the A’s achieve an unthinkable winning record. Many say they changed the game of baseball forever. 

Jesus did change the world forever. But unlike the manager in Moneyball, he didn’t come with a new philosophy but with the message of the Kingdom of God. 

The healing in the Pool of Siloam left Jesus in hot water. It was the Sabbath, after all! Believing law-keeping could heal, the Pharisees became OCD about the Sabbath and their extra rules. Sadly, their hearts could not have been more out of sync with God’s. 

The Kingdom of God isn’t primarily about law-keeping. It has and always will be about healing: what God has done for us, rather than what we can do for God. 

Jesus clashed with the religious authorities but brought hope and healing to the marginalised. This is not a new religion but the heart of God. Seeing this can change everything forever. 

Read on, to find out more about the healing of the blind man and its spiritual significance.

A miracle with implications John 9

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