22. Pool (from the Latin pisces, fish) was with the Romans a reservoir or nurse-pond for fish. Later, it was understood to be a public bathing-place.
The Pool of Bethesda, at Jerusalem, was a cistern near the Temple, fed by a natural spring, the water of which possessed healing properties. It was doubtless a circulating fountain, which, at certain times, burst forth with strength, and moved the water. According to common belief, this moment was the most favorable for cures. Perhaps, in reality, at the moment it gushed out, it had more active properties, or that the agitation produced by the gushing water stirred the mud at the bottom, which was beneficial for certain diseases. These effects are natural and perfectly well known now. But then there was but little advance in science, and they saw a supernatural cause for all or the most part of unknown phenomena. The Jews attributed the agitation of this water to the presence of an angel; and this belief seemed to them so much the more reasonable, as at this moment the water was more salutary.
After having cured this man, Jesus said to him: “See, you are well again. Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you.” By these words he makes him to understand that his disease was a punishment, and that, if he did not cease sinning, he would be again punished more severely than ever. This doctrine conforms entirely to that which Spiritism teaches.