MONDAY, JUNE 26
SCRIPTURE: John 9
In some ways this is a unique chapter. One of those is the entire chapter actually revolves around the story of one man’s encounter with Jesus. There are other characters in this story but there really is only one story.
Obviously Jesus is at the forefront of this story which is where He should always be. But there is another man who is an important character. It is a man who was born blind.
It is interesting and telling to look at what the disciples had to say about this man. They took his blindness as evidence that either he or his parents had sinned. And they asked Jesus who was responsible for this man being born blind.
As odd as that may sound in our modern ears, there are a couple of things that we should talk about. First, all illness, sickness, handicaps, etc. are indeed the result of sin. That certainly doesn’t mean those things are the result of the specific sin of an individual. It simply means that all of humanity’s health and physical problems are the result of the fact that we live in a fallen world. And the fact that we live in a fallen world is the direct result of sin.
Second, some illness, sickness, handicaps, etc. are actually the result of the specific sin of an individual. There are instances of addictions leading to physical illness and handicap. For example, cirrhosis of the liver is a debilitating illness that is often the result of drinking too much alcohol. There are other instances of an expecting mom using drugs and the baby being born addicted to that particular drug.
Jesus’ solution to this situation was to heal this man of this blindness. In this instance, Jesus spit on dirt to make mud, put the mud on the guy’s eyes, and sent the man off to wash the mud off of his face. As far as I know this is the only time that Jesus used this method to heal blindness. There is the one account in Mark 8 where Jesus used spit. But this appears to be the only time He made mud for healing.
I am more than convinced that Jesus used a variety of methods to heal a variety of problems so we wouldn’t be tempted to worship the method instead of the Master. It would be so easy for us to focus on the details of the method instead of looking for the meaning behind the healing. So, Jesus used all sorts of methods to heal folks.
Our friends, the Pharisees, soon showed up on the scene. The Bible never says nor does it allude to the possibility that the Pharisees were excited, glad, or happy that this man had been healed of his blindness. Instead they were upset that Jesus had the audacity to make mud on the Sabbath Day which they were convinced violated the Sabbath law.
They did everything they knew to get this healed man to discredit Jesus. I love his answer in verse 25: “One thing I know. I was blind but now I see.” In other words, he was not going to get sucked into their petty arguments. He was going to stick with what he knew. He was blind but now he saw.
That’s a pretty good strategy for us. It is increasingly easy to duped into religious arguments about all kinds of stuff. Instead of taking the bait and getting bit, we would be better off just to stick to what we know. And here’s what I know. God loves me. Jesus died for my sins. Jesus saved me. I’m not sure a whole lot else really matters.