v1-12 - Jesus and His disciples happen upon a blind beggar.
We have a natural inclination to assume that bad things like blindness are the result of some specific sin. Both the disciples (v2) and the establishment (v34) come to that conclusion.
Jesus sets that assumption aside, remind us that it's a fool's errand to determine why bad things happen.
Instead we must remember that all things happen so that God's glory can be displayed.
Most of the time it's difficult for us to see how God is being glorified, but in this particular incident, the man's blindness results in Jesus' ability to glorify God by healing the man.
Blindness is one of the most common afflictions that Jesus heals. What a metaphor!
Jesus heals the man, but even so people were skeptical that it was the same man, or that he was even blind in the first place.
v13-34- The clown show arrives in the form of the establishment Pharisees.
John accentuates their spiritual blindness in that they can't even see the truth Jesus represents even as they speak to a man who had just been cured by Jesus.
Once again, the establishment is upset that Jesus infringed one of their man made Sabbath restrictions by spitting on the ground and making mud.
They don't believe the healed man, so they interrogate his parents, who corroborate the fact the man had been blind his whole life.
Still not satisfied, they haul the healed man back in.
This time the man turns the tables and begins to ask them questions instead which illustrate their absurdity (v27).
This in turn elicits insults from the establishment. Anytime that insults begin to fly in a discussion, it's a clear sign those lobbing them have lost the argument.
v35-41 - Jesus catches back up with the man, and pointedly asks him if he believes in the Son of Man.
The man wants to know who the Son of Man is so that he can believe.
Jesus tells this man, who used to be both physically and spiritually blind, that he has now seen the savior!
The man's immediate response perfectly captures how we should respond in faith:
Lord, I believe, and he worshipped Him (v38)
True faith must always lead to true worship.
The Pharisees can't keep their mouths shut and once again fall on their face.
Jesus tells them they'd have less guilt if they were blind,
but since they claim to see & know God's will,
they're stuck in their guilt.
If you're going to portray yourself as a godly person who knows the truth, you'd better be certain of your spiritual eyesight!
OLD TESTAMENT REFERENCE: The purpose that God had for Abraham and his descendants is reiterated in Genesis 18:18-19.
Use the comment box below to discuss one or more of these questions:
EYE FOR DETAIL—From what you recall seeing in this chapter, try answering the following question without looking at your Bible: What festival does this long conversation take place at? (you'll need to go back to 7:2 for a reminder)
Follow the AAA Prayer Pattern:
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: God who displays His glory and works in all things (v3)
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Echo what the blind man told the Pharisees in v31 - God's will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED: