Who Is Blind?

MEMORY SELECTION: “One thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see.” —John 9:25

SELECTED SCRIPTURE: John 9:1-7, 29-38

BLINDNESS was a common affliction in Jesus’ day. In many instances blindness was caused by uncleanliness, and history records that in some cases blindness from this cause was healed, or partially so, by eyewashes, etc. But as stated in verse 32, “From the [earliest] age it was not heard, that anyone opened the eyes of one having been born blind” (Diaglott), there was no record of anyone ever having restored sight to one born blind. This is why Jesus, in answering the question as to why the man was born blind, said, “Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him. I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.”

There are many lessons in this miracle performed by Jesus. One lesson is that this particular man’s blindness was not the result of some specific sin by either the man or his parents, but rather, it was the result of adamic condemnation. Jesus showed the relationship between physical infirmities and adamic sin in another miracle, recorded in Matthew 9:1-6. He had healed a man sick with palsy, and he said, “Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee.” The scribes who heard were familiar with the Law, and they knew only God could forgive sins and that only in a manner prescribed by the Law; and so they began to accuse Jesus of blaspheming. Jesus said: “Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts? For whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and walk? But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (then saith he to the sick of the palsy,) Arise, take up thy bed, and go unto thine house.” (emphasis ours)

The lesson is that in the kingdom Jesus will have power to forgive all adamic sin, which will also mean the restoration of mind and body to the perfection that was enjoyed in the Garden of Eden. This was not the time to forgive adamic sins as far as the world was concerned; but by curing the man of palsy Jesus erased the outward evidence of adamic condemnation and thereby proved God’s ability to completely cleanse all from adamic sin and its manifold effects in his own due time and place—in the kingdom.

Jesus indicated that this miracle was part of the works of God, that is, the fulfillment of prophecies which illustrated the kingdom. For those who had “eyes to see,” these works of God identified Jesus as the Messiah.

The account tells us that Jesus spat on the ground to make clay, which he rubbed on the eyes of the blind man and then instructed him to go to the pool of Siloam and wash. When the man had done this, his blindness was cured. The reason for this appears to have been to test the faith of the blind man so that his faith would be substantiated by a measure of works.

This same demonstration of faith was required of Naaman, who dipped himself seven times in the Jordan in order that he might be cleansed from leprosy.—II Kings 5:14

Jesus asked the man to whom sight had been restored, “Dost thou believe on the Son of God?” The man asked, “Who is he, Lord, that I might believe on him?” And Jesus answered, “Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that talketh with thee.” The man answered that he believed. Jesus then 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.” The scribes and Pharisees were those who claimed that they could “see,” or understand, but Jesus was a stumbling stone and a rock of offense to them. (Isa. 8:14) But those who were “blind” and did not boast about being able to “see” had their blindness lifted, and they were able to “see” and believe and receive the blessings that were then due from the Lord.

Dawn Bible Students Association
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