Our office will be closed from 9/25 – 10/23. Any orders placed during this time will be shipped upon return by 11/1/23.

Compass Logo Color

The Pool of Siloam & the Messiah

May 8, 2019

Share this article:

On our trips to Israel, my most fun Bible study to teach is from the top of the Mount of Olives. The view of the Old City is stupendously visually impacting to anyone with even a basic understanding of the Bible.You can literally see so many of the things mentioned in Scripture like the Garden of Gethsemane, Palm Sunday Road, the Eastern Gate, the Temple Mount where the Jewish Temple stood, Caiaphas’ House, the Garden Tomb, the City of David, Herod’s Palace and so much more.

One of the more interesting observations I like to point out from this breathtaking view from the Mount of Olives is the famous story of Jesus healing a beggar who was blind from birth (John 8:59-9:41).

In a nutshell, Jesus was leaving the Temple compound, saw the blind beggar, picked up some dirt, spit into the dirt and applied it to the beggar’s eyes. He told the beggar to go wash the dirt out of his eyes in the Pool of Siloam. And once he did, he could instantly see for the first time in his life.

The Pharisees came to him to question the beggar about Jesus healing him. They were unmercifully berating the poor guy about how this could have happened, ultimately resulting in the healed man blurting out the now famous words, “All I know is that I was blind but now I can see.”

More to the Story
But when you’re sitting on the Mount of Olives reading this Biblical account, you learn there’s a lot more to the story. You can see the place where the stunning Jewish Temple once stood (#1 in the Jerusalem drawing above). Jesus would have been in that area when He healed the blind beggar. Only a couple of hundred feet to the north, just outside the northern wall of the Temple Mount, were the Pools of Bethesda, a relatively short, flat walk (#2 in the drawing).

But Jesus didn’t send him to the Pools of Bethesda. Instead He said, “Go wash in the Pool of Siloam,” which was five times further away down to the lowest part of Jerusalem (#3 in the drawing). For a blind guy, that was a LONG way to go— especially since the Pools of Bethesda were far more accessible.

Why did Jesus send the blind beggar all the way to the Pool of Siloam? Well, as the scripture points out, the Pool of Siloam’s name in Hebrew means “The Pool of the One Who Will Be Sent,” which was, of course, the Messiah. The Jews regarded this pool as prophetic of the Messiah pouring water upon the desert.

The Pool of Siloam was also symbolic of the Messiah pouring out the Holy Spirit on the Jews. The blind beggar was told to go to the Messiah’s pool to be healed. The name of the specific location the blind beggar was told to go to in order to be healed would not have been missed by the Pharisees.

But there’s even more to the story…
Each fall the Jews celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles. The last day of this feast is called “The Great Day of the Feast.” On this day, the priests would perform a special ritual in which the nation would cry out for their Messiah to come.

Beginning at the Temple located at the top of Mt. Moriah, the High Priest would lead a long line of priests as they sang their way down a wide descending boulevard (see picture above) to the Pool of Siloam, located at the bottom of Mt. Moriah.

At the pool the High Priest would fill a special pitcher with water. With great pomp and ceremony, the High Priest would then take the long climb back up the boulevard to the Temple at the top of Mount Moriah.

He then would take the pitcher of water to the Brazen Altar of Sacrifice and pour the water on it while reading Isaiah 44:3 about the future Messiah coming to Israel:

“For I will pour out water on the thirsty land
   And streams on the dry ground;
   I will pour out My Spirit on your offspring
   And My blessing on your descendants;” Is. 44:3

The crowd would fall silent as they prayed for the Messiah to come and pour His Spirit on them. But this particular year, Jesus had come stealthily to Jerusalem without His Apostles. And it was at this moment He boldly broke the prayerful silence by loudly proclaiming:

“...If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’” John 7:37-38

Jesus was answering their cry for their Messiah to come. The prophetic ritual of pouring the water from the “Pool of the One Who Is Sent” and praying for their Messiah had been answered!

But the crowd was confused. Some were amazed by His miracles and teaching. Others were adamant He was not the Messiah because He was from, they thought, Galilee and the Messiah was to be born in Bethlehem. They didn’t realize He was actually born in Bethlehem.

The next day Jesus showed up at the Temple and confounded the Pharisees with His incredible oratory. Not being able to answer, they made a deep, deep dig at Jesus being born of fornication—supposing Mary had gotten pregnant before she was married. Then they said He had a demon. Finally they tried to stone Him.

Jesus slipped away from their grasp, and as He left the Temple area he saw the blind beggar sitting on the sidewalk. I have to think Jesus was smiling as He healed him right under their phariseetical noses and then tells him to go wash in the Pool of Siloam—The Pool of the Sent One.

Now you know why Jesus didn’t send the blind beggar to the Pools of Bethesda!


© 2019 Compass Int’l, Inc.

Bill and Susie Perkins founded Compass International, Inc. in 1993 as a non-profit, non-denominational ministry. For information on Compass’ Steeling the Mind Bible Conferences, Good Morning Lord! Bible studies, books, DVDs and Biblelands Cruises, go to compass.org

Share this article:

Bill Perkins
Written By:
Bill Perkins
Discover More Articles
Compass books
Compass Books
Check out Compass' selection of paperback, digital and audio books – from Biblically accurate historical fiction to hard-hitting, biblical topics.
Shop Books
Sign Up, FREE! Compass eNews
Get Compass eNews Articles straight to your inbox!
Get Signed Up
Support Compass International Shop on Amazon Smile

Support Compass Every Time You Shop!

Every time you shop on Amazon.com, you can be supporting Compass International using Amazon Smile - At no additional cost to you! Thank you for your support!
Start Shopping with Amazon Smile
Compass Logo
Biblelands Cruise Preview Image

The trip of a lifetime!

View Trip Details & Sign Up
Steeling the Mind


Learn More
Good Morning Lord Footer Preview

Who needs coffee!

Sign Up Today!
Compass eNews Sign Up Preview

Stay in touch!

Learn More & Sign Up
Footer Grand Canyon Preview Logo

Grand Canyon Tour

View Trip Details & Sign Up
Compass Footer Communique Preview

In Your Mailbox!

Read Now
Compass Pointe

Become a Compass Pointe

Learn More
Compass books

Compass Books

Compass Books
The Bible in 30 Minutes

Watch the Entire Bible in 30 Minutes!

Watch Now
Compass Read Romans 1

RR1 Read Romans 1

Learn More about RR1
Compass Millions Missing?

Millions Missing?

Discover This Resource
Compass TV Footer IMG


Watch CompassTV!
Compass International, Inc © 1993–2024, All Rights Reserved.
Contact Compass
Compass Icon 100 w
Follow Compass Ministry
Compass Team
Compass is a 501(c)3 non-profit, non-denominational ministry based in Coeur d’Alene, ID, founded in 1993 by Bill and Susie Perkins. Our mission is to defend the accuracy of the Bible through our email Bible studies, Bible trips and cruises, missionary outreach, and Steeling the Mind Bible Conferences.
Support Our Ministry
Shopping cart
There are no products in the cart!
Continue shopping