This ninth chapter of John reads really fast. There are a few deeper meanings in it and I will try and bring them out as we go through it, but I would like to cover this whole chapter in one go, so I’ll do my best to keep my input short.
John 9:1 And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth.
This whole chapter is really about sight and having eyes to see and ears to hear. Here Jesus sees, and naturally the blind man doesn’t. We are told that he was blind from birth not only so that we understand that it wasn’t some trick, but also so that we understand he never had eyes to see the deeper truth.
John 9:2 And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind?
This was the common belief at this time, that if someone was sick it was because someone sinned.
John 9:3 Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.
Don’t read over this- this man was born blind so that works of God should be made manifest in him. That is to say, so that the works of God are made apparent, or made known. He was actually blind for this purpose.
John 9:4 I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work. (9:5) As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.
We have seen Jesus talk about the light and night before. The day represents the presence of the truth of God, and the night is the obscurity of that truth, especially in the tribulation. This is a topic in and of itself, so for now let’s just press on.
John 9:6 When he had thus spoken, he spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay, (9:7) And said unto him, Go, wash in the pool of Siloam, (which is by interpretation, Sent.) He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing.
This is the 6th sign in the book of John. 6 being the number of man and man being made of dirt or clay. I haven’t brought out the signs, as I perhaps should have, so we may do a post covering all eight when we are finished with this book. For now let’s look at the elements involved because a lot is being said here.
The breath of God is what took a mound of dirt and turned it into a living, breathing Adam. That man and his descendants didn’t have eyes to see or ears to hear as they should. Some did of course, Enoch, Noah etc., but as a whole they couldn’t see the spiritual. In the garden, Satan promised that if they partook of the fruit their eyes would be opened, but it opened them to the ways of this world and closed them to the ways of God. Now we see what happens when we partake of the Tree of Life and the Living Water is added.
John 9:8 The neighbours therefore, and they which before had seen him that he was blind, said, Is not this he that sat and begged? (9:9) Some said, This is he: others said, He is like him: but he said, I am he.
Have you ever seen a beggar cleaned up? Hard to recognize.
John 9:10 Therefore said they unto him, How were thine eyes opened? (9:11) He answered and said, 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. (9:12) Then said they unto him, Where is he? He said, I know not.
Notice that in order for him to receive his sight he had to follow directions. It wasn’t just magic. So many forget to follow the directions, then wonder why they are not blessed.
John 9:13 They brought to the Pharisees him that aforetime was blind. (9:14) And it was the sabbath day when Jesus made the clay, and opened his eyes.
We already know the pharisees are going to get their panties in a bunch over this, but stop and think about this for a moment. Jesus is Lord of the sabbath, and Colossians chapter 2 tells us “the handwriting of ordinances” was nailed to the cross, meaning we are to sabbath in Him. Sabbath only means rest, and we do that in Him EVERYDAY or at least we should. If you are tired and your soul is weary try it sometime. Thus if we receive our sight by partaking of the Living Water, who is the Sabbath? How on earth could Jesus have healed him on any other day?
John 9:15 Then again the Pharisees also asked him how he had received his sight. He said unto them, He put clay upon mine eyes, and I washed, and do see. (9:16) Therefore said some of the Pharisees, 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.
How could a sinner do it, indeed.What did Christ say in Luke?
Luke 12:51-53 Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division: (52) For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three. (53) The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.
John 9:17 They say unto the blind man again, What sayest thou of him, that he hath opened thine eyes? He said, He is a prophet.
“What do you have to say about this man?” Can you picture that? This man is ecstatic because he can see. He is excited and wants to tell the world and the first thing they want to know is what does he think about him. What would you think about Him? He just opened your eyes! And I tell you that once Immanuel, God with us, opens your eyes, you want to tell the world.
He says He is a prophet. Now from the Greek this means largely what we think of when we think of prophet, which is to say someone that foretells the future and certainly it does mean that and Jesus certainly was that, but from the Hebrew if you called a man a prophet you are saying he is an inspired man, a man inspired by God.
John 9:18 But the Jews did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind, and received his sight, until they called the parents of him that had received his sight.
Of course they don’t believe.
John 9:19 And they asked them, saying, Is this your son, who ye say was born blind? how then doth he now see?
Why are they asking his parents? The guy already told them the story. You would think that would mean it’s all peas and carrots, right? But it isn’t, and people today are no different. If you tell them something miraculous they wont believe. Instead they will go and check your credibility, which is why it is important to protect it.
John 9:20 His parents answered them and said, We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind: (9:21) But by what means he now seeth, we know not; or who hath opened his eyes, we know not: he is of age; ask him: he shall speak for himself. (9:22) These words spake his parents, because 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. (9:23) Therefore said his parents, He is of age; ask him.
You can take these verses a couple of different ways, but I am sure you can picture this scene. I’d find it hard to leave my child to these wolves no matter what his age though I can understand that, for them, to be put out of the synagogue meant not only to lose their salvation, but it meant to be shunned by the whole society.
John 9:24 Then again called they the man that was blind, and said unto him, Give God the praise: we know that this man is a sinner. (9:25) He answered and said, Whether he be a sinner or no, I know not: one thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see.
Can you see the difference in the level of thinking? The pharisees say Jesus must be a sinner, or this blind man is a liar. When they find out he isn’t a liar they say well Jesus must be a sinner, but gives glory to God. We need to watch this level of thinking because it can be easy to fall into. Certainly we need to give God the glory for everything, but don’t forget the way the blind man reacted to this situation.
John 9:26 Then said they to him again, What did he to thee? how opened he thine eyes?
Never focus on the how. I know it is easy to do, but we need to focus on the why. Why did Jesus heal this man?
John 9:27 He answered them, I have told you already, and ye did not hear: wherefore would ye hear it again? will ye also be his disciples?
Doesn’t sound like a bad plan to me.
John 9:28 Then they reviled him, and said, Thou art his disciple; but we are Moses’ disciples. (9:29) We know that God spake unto Moses: as for this fellow, we know not from whence he is.
Again this goes back to John 8. They don’t understand Jesus. Now let’s hear the blind man’s response because here is some common sense.
John 9:30 The man answered and said unto them, Why herein is a marvellous thing, that ye know not from whence he is, and yet he hath opened mine eyes.
You don’t know where he came from, but he opened my eyes.
John 9:31 Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth his will, him he heareth. (9:32) Since the world began was it not heard that any man opened the eyes of one that was born blind. (9:33) If this man were not of God, he could do nothing.
It’s funny how the gurus cannot reason out the ABCs isn’t it?
John 9:34 They answered and said unto him, Thou wast altogether born in sins, and dost thou teach us? And they cast him out.
Pride: that is all this is when you get down to it. They are supposed to be the ones that God works through, but instead it is coming from a peasant from Galilee and a blind man.
John 9:35 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? (9:36) He answered and said, Who is he, Lord, that I might believe on him? (9:37) And Jesus said unto him, Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that talketh with thee. (9:38) And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him.
It comes down to personal choice guys.
John 9:39 And Jesus said, For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not might see; and that they which see might be made blind.
This is the crux of the matter. Jesus came to give us eyes to see and ears to hear, but he also made it so that some will be made blind.
Romans 11:7-8 What then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded (8) (According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day.
John 9:40 And some of the Pharisees which were with him heard these words, and said unto him, Are we blind also? (9:41) Jesus said unto them, If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth.
Blindness to the truth lends you protection from sin, however if you proclaim that you have the truth and teach others your sin will remain. This is why Jesus tells us over and over again to pray for guidance and understanding. Never assume you understand it all.
It comes down to faith. The blind man had faith enough to follow Jesus’ instructions even if he didn’t know what what to expect. The same goes for us: if we follow the Word of God in faith, He will give us eyes to see and ears to hear.
I hope this didn’t run too long for you, but at the same time I hope we didn’t cover it too quickly. If you find anything you would like us to discuss further just comment below or contact us with your question otherwise we will see you in chapter 10 of this great book.