Our January Journey through John
John 9 Focus: Jesus gives sight to the blind--both physical and spiritual (faith).
JOHN 9: Insights, Highlights and Points to Ponder:
1. John 9 describes in detail the sixth of seven signs (miracles) recorded in the Gospel of John that were performed by Jesus showing He is the promised Messiah.
2. People in every age pray for miracles of physical healing. In Matthew 7:7 Jesus invites us to pray boldly to God as we “ask…seek.. knock.” Jesus also teaches us to pray for our desires and petitions to be in harmony with God’s will--”Thy will be done” in the Lord’s Prayer(Mt. 6), and as Jesus prayed in the Garden of Gethsemene: “…not as I will but as Thy will…” (Mt. 25:39).
3. Consider This Fact: Everyone Jesus healed physically during His earthly Ministry--they one day eventually DIED. Physical healing is a blessing and gift from God whenever it happens, but physical healing is not the greatest miracle God can give humans who are blind, deaf, lame, fighting cancer and/or any other disease. God’s greatest miracles given to us are the forgiveness of sins and faith in Jesus as our eternal Savior from sin, Satan and death.
4. Old and New Testament PERSPECTIVE: Miracles of healing are not an end in themselves. A primary purpose of the miracles of Jesus is to show us that Jesus has power over all of our enemies. Ultimately, the miracles of Jesus verify He IS the fulfillment of all of God’s past prophecies, promises, and plans to save us spiritually and eternally.
5. As we read John 9, ponder these passages from Isaiah and Matthew:
Isaiah 35:5-6a, Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf unstopped; 6 then shall the lame man leap like a deer, and the tongue of the mute sing for joy.
Matthew 11 - 2 Now when John heard in prison about the deeds of the Christ, he sent word by his disciples 3 and said to him, “Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?” 4 And Jesus answered them, “Go and tell John what you hear and see: 5 the blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them.
Jesus quotes Isaiah 35 to demonstrate that all His miracles show Who He truly is! Christ’s miracles of healing magnify that He is the Messiah. Keep this in mind as we read about His two incredible miracles in John 9. Jesus gives BOTH physical healing(to one born blind) and spiritual sight (to one born spiritually blind in the darkness of sin; faith!).
We now read: John 9 (NIV)
Jesus Heals a Man Born Blind
9:1 As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. 2 His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”
3 “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him. 4 As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work. 5 While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”
6 After saying this, he spit on the ground, made some mud with the saliva, and put it on the man’s eyes. 7 “Go,” he told him, “wash in the Pool of Siloam” (this word means “Sent”). So the man went and washed, and came home seeing.
8 His neighbors and those who had formerly seen him begging asked, “Isn’t this the same man who used to sit and beg?” 9 Some claimed that he was. Others said, “No, he only looks like him.” But he himself insisted, “I am the man.”
10 “How then were your eyes opened?” they asked. 11 He replied, “The man they call Jesus made some mud and put it on my eyes. He told me to go to Siloam and wash. So I went and washed, and then I could see.” 12 “Where is this man?” they asked him. “I don’t know,” he said.
The Pharisees Investigate the Healing
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.
35 Jesus heard that they had thrown him out, and when he found him, he said, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?” 36 “Who is he, sir?” the man asked. “Tell me so that I may believe in him.” 37 Jesus said, “You have now seen him; in fact, he is the one speaking with you.” 38 Then the man said, “Lord, I believe,” and he worshiped him.
39 Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind.”
40 Some Pharisees who were with him heard him say this and asked, “What? Are we blind too?” 41 Jesus said, “If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see, your guilt remains.”
The Lutheran Study Bible(LSB) provides powerful summary commentary on John 9 (CPH.org, LSB p. 1801):
Jesus gives physical and spiritual sight--faith--to a man born blind, though the Pharisees accuse Jesus of violating the Sabbath and remain spiritually blind. We are all born spiritually blind, unable to see our sin and unwilling to do things God’s way. But through Baptism and the Word, God has delivered us from the domain of darkness through His beloved Son and has enlightened our hearts to know and follow Him.
+Prayer+ I praise You, O God, that though I once was blind, now I see! Lead me as I guide others to the truth of the Gospel. Amen.
We Now Sing AND Pray:
Amazing grace, how sweet the sound
that saved a wretch like me,
I once was lost but now I’m found,
was blind but now I see.
Thank You, Jesus! Amen.
Pastor Scott Schmieding