Key Verse: John 9:25b “I was blind but now I see!”
What a great story we read in chapter nine! Let me summarize it. Jesus is walking along and sees a man who was born blind. The disciples ask a question typical of orthodox religion of the time, “Who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answers, “Nobody sinned here.” This offended the disciples’ religious sensibilities, you can be sure!
He then goes through a little ritual of spit and mud and orders the blind man to find his way to the pool of Siloam. Onlookers must have felt some pity for this poor guy tottering down to the pool with his face disfigured by the mud. “Maybe he’s gone off the deep end”, some of them may have though. But he did what Jesus commanded, and he “came home seeing”, although he had yet to see his healer.
Then follows a series of discussions, interviews, and confrontations between the man and his religious superiors. The Pharisees (remember, they were the ancient equivalent of a lot of us orthodox evangelicals!) are so obtuse as to discredit the miracle because it happened on the Sabbath. The parents are brought into it, but they remain neutral, because they don’t want to be thrown out of the synagogue over any Jesus Christ controversy. In the middle of it all is a man who had never seen but now sees. He’s so stubborn in insisting on seeing and refusing to bad-mouth Jesus, that finally he is thrown out of the synagogue.
Then the man gets to meet his healer, face to face, eye to eye. At first he didn’t recognize Jesus. How could he? But there must have been something about Jesus’ voice or His touch. “Lord, I believe”, the man says, and “worships” Jesus.
What was Jesus’ assessment of it all? “For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind” (v.39). Let’s never think ourselves beyond need. If we do, we may find that our “guilt remains” (v.41).