What Do You Think?
Open my eyes, Lord, to what You would have me see in Your Word today.
Read John 9:13–34
13 They brought to the Pharisees the man who had been blind. 14 Now the day on which Jesus had made the mud and opened the man’s eyes was a Sabbath. 15 Therefore the Pharisees also asked him how he had received his sight. “He put mud on my eyes,” the man replied, “and I washed, and now I see.”
16 Some of the Pharisees said, “This man is not from God, for he does not keep the Sabbath.”
But others asked, “How can a sinner perform such signs?” So they were divided.
17 Then they turned again to the blind man, “What have you to say about him? It was your eyes he opened.”
The man replied, “He is a prophet.”
18 They still did not believe that he had been blind and had received his sight until they sent for the man’s parents. 19 “Is this your son?” they asked. “Is this the one you say was born blind? How is it that now he can see?”
20 “We know he is our son,” the parents answered, “and we know he was born blind. 21 But how he can see now, or who opened his eyes, we don’t know. Ask him. He is of age; he will speak for himself.” 22 His parents said this because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders, who already had decided that anyone who acknowledged that Jesus was the Messiah would be put out of the synagogue. 23 That was why his parents said, “He is of age; ask him.”
24 A second time they summoned the man who had been blind. “Give glory to God by telling the truth,” they said. “We know this man is a sinner.”
25 He replied, “Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!”
26 Then they asked him, “What did he do to you? How did he open your eyes?”
27 He answered, “I have told you already and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you want to become his disciples too?”
28 Then they hurled insults at him and said, “You are this fellow’s disciple! We are disciples of Moses! 29 We know that God spoke to Moses, but as for this fellow, we don’t even know where he comes from.”
30 The man answered, “Now that is remarkable! You don’t know where he comes from, yet he opened my eyes. 31 We know that God does not listen to sinners. He listens to the godly person who does his will. 32 Nobody has ever heard of opening the eyes of a man born blind. 33 If this man were not from God, he could do nothing.”
34 To this they replied, “You were steeped in sin at birth; how dare you lecture us!” And they threw him out.
New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectThink of a religious-based conflict: local, national or worldwide. What do you think is the cause of it?
This passage seems to be a theological argument motivated by the Pharisees’ fear that something new is happening within Judaism. Verses 22 and 23 show their response to their fear and how that affected the blind man’s parents.
The healed man was called for a second time to speak with the Pharisees (24). His parents were so afraid that they had already dissociated themselves from him (23). He stood by what Jesus
had done for him (25–27). What did he imply about the Pharisees (30,31)? The cost was high (28,34). Why do you think he did this, even though he knew it would cost him a lot?
What actually happens is that the tables are turned: the Pharisees, who think they can see, turn out to be blind (30–34). They are so crippled by fear, anxiety and resentment of the new life that Jesus is bringing to Judaism that they end up being spiritually blind and crippled.
The man who was blind has experienced what it means to be drawn by Jesus out of darkness into light. He is now able to see both physically and spiritually (17). He is no longer crippled but free!
Take some time to ask God if there is any area of your life in which you are spiritually blind. Wait in God’s presence for his answer.
Father, I pray for our world and our churches, that Jesus’ light may shine and that conflict may be replaced with his light and peace.
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