The Man Born Blind – John 9

The man born blind has an important distinction in the bible. Unlike Bartimaeus or Nicodemus, or others that we read of, he did not come to the Lord Jesus or cry out for him, but was used by the Lord Jesus in a mighty way to show forth the works of God. This healing is only found in the book of John, which is the gospel that proclaims the deity of the Lord Jesus.

John 9:1-41

One day, as Jesus passed by with his disciples, he saw a man blind from his birth, and the question arose from his disciples regarding who caused his blindness? Was it his parents, or him that he was born blind? An interesting question, for how could one sin in the womb so that he be born blind? But Jesus answered them V3 “Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him..” and then shortly thereafter Jesus proclaims V5 “As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world”

The bible says “all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” (Romans3:23) and all are in darkness, but the Lord Jesus is the light of the world – and we are to come out of darkness and into the light by believing the gospel, and receiving the Lord Jesus as our Saviour. Jesus chose to manifest his power over this man’s blindness on the sabbath day, the Jews holy day, showing that he was Lord over the sabbath.

And thus speaking, Jesus V6 “spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay” Bartimaeus called out to the Lord Jesus to heal him, and Jesus only spoke the word and Bartimaeus could see. But in this case the blind man’s eyes were covered with clay made by the Lord Jesus and lovingly placed on his eyes. This was to require an act of obedience from the man. He was told V7 “go, wash in the pool of Siloam” he was to go to a particular place for a particular action. The man born blind went, and washed, and “came seeing”.

Of course, the neighbours that had seen him blind and begging saw, and wondered if this was in fact the same person that “sat and begged” Some believed it was him, but some said it was someone “like him” and so the man affirmed “I am he.” He did not hide the fact that he was the blind man who was now able to see.

The question is asked of him “How were thine eyes opened” and the time comes to the man born blind that comes to everyone who has been saved by grace. The time to confess the Lord Jesus.. The man born blind told the truth, naming the Lord Jesus.V11 “A man that is called Jesus made clay, and anointed mine eyes, and said unto me, Go to the pool of Siloam, and wash: and I went and washed, and I received sight.”

Next he was taken to the Pharisees and questioned, and again he told them what had been done to him. But the Pharisees, knowing it was the sabbath day that the man was healed, were of two minds. Some said that V16 “this man is not of God, because he keepeth not the sabbath day. Others said How can a man that is a sinner do such miracles? And there was a division among them” Some believed that the law should be honoured, while some others wondered how Jesus, whom they supposed to be a sinner, could do miracles.

At this point the man born blind thought that Jesus was a prophet . But the Jews, in their unbelief, would not even believe that the man was ever blind, and called the man’s parents. They acknowledged that this man was their son, and that he had been born blind, but they would not offer anything as to who healed him. Because V22 “they feared the Jews: for the Jews had agreed already, that if any man did confess that he was Christ, he should be put out of the synagogue” They used the excuse that their son was of age and able to speak for himself, thus letting themselves off the hook, as it were. But in doing this, they denied the Lord Jesus.

And so the Pharisees demand that the man born blind V24 “Give God the praise: we know that this man is a sinner” and as such, require the man born blind to deny the healing power of the Lord Jesus and obey them instead. This was the time for a great decision, would he tell the truth and confirm the power of Jesus? or would he do as the Pharisees requested of him and deny the Lord Jesus?

With boldness he answered them V25 “Whether he be a sinner or no, I know not: one thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see” and we must remember that up to this point, the man had not seen the Lord Jesus, he had only heard his voice and obeyed his command to go and wash.

And when he was asked how he was healed he spoke boldly again V27 “I have told you already, and ye did not hear: wherefore would ye hear it again? will ye also be his disciples?” A very difficult question to ask the Pharisees, if they heard the truth that Jesus healed him, would they believe on Him? And so they were angry at him, and said V28-29 “Thou art his disciple, but we are Moses’ disciples. We know that God spake unto Moses: as for this fellow, we know not from whence he is.”

Again the man born blind speaks boldly V30-33 “Why herein is a marvellous thing, that ye know not from whence he is. and yet he hath opened mine eyes. Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth his will, him he heareth. Since the world began was it not heard that any man opened the eyes of one that was born blind? If this man were not of God, he could do nothing.”

In speaking these words, the man confesses his faith in Jesus. And he is cast out of the synagogue, and away from the law. But the grace of God is greater than the law. And lovingly Jesus goes to him. This is such a beautiful part of God’s holy word. Let the bible speak:

V35-38 “Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and when he had found him, he said unto him, Dost thou believe on the Son of God?” He answered and said “Who is he Lord that I might believe on him?” And Jesus said unto him, “Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that talketh with thee.” And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him.

So very beautiful. He believes and now not only his physical eyes are opened, but his heart is opened too. And he worships Jesus, just as we do upon salvation, when we realize who is this Jesus? He is the King of Kings, Lord of Lords. and we must worship him too.

Romans 10:9-10 “..if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”

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