By Brooke Holt
“As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. And his disciples asked him, ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?’ Jesus answered, ‘It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him. We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night is coming, when no one can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.’ Having said these things, he spit on the ground and made mud with the saliva. Then he anointed the man's eyes with the mud and said to him, ‘Go, wash in the pool of Siloam’ (which means Sent). So he went and washed and came back seeing.” John 9:1-7
In our day and age, people want answers and explanations for everything. We live in the rational world. This is not bad, except that we, as humans, have limitations. We simply do not fully know or understand the mind or the ways of God. Sometimes we must live in divine mystery trusting that God does not always provide our desired answers and explanations.
In this Gospel narrative, John writes about a man who was born blind. Instead of allowing for divine mystery as to what caused the blindness, the disciples seek an explanation for the blindness. Was the blindness a result of this man’s sin or his parents’ sin?
Jesus chose to shine his divine light and illuminate their muddled thinking: “It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him” (John 9:4). No logical explanation existed for this man’s blindness except that he was born into a fallen and sinful world where physical infirmities exist. His blindness provided an opportunity to see the glory of God displayed. Jesus spits on the ground, makes mud, anoints the man’s eyes with that mud, then sends him to wash in the pool of Siloam. After that washing, the man returns with full sight.
Wow! This miracle astounded the man born blind, the disciples, and then everyone who would hear about it. Throughout John 9, the man born blind had the opportunity to share his healing story repeatedly. Granted, many would not receive his words; nevertheless, he told of the miracle that Jesus worked in his life. Though he was born blind, he now saw.
We all want to understand why things are the way they are. Often, we seek that understanding to fix a situation or prevent something from happening. No one likes pain or discomfort and thus we seek to avoid it at all costs. The Lord does not like to see his people suffer either. Yet, he sees everything as an opportunity to display his mighty work and to produce spiritual fruit in our lives. He can do it through physical or emotional healing, provision, guidance, opportunities, etc. God always desires to demonstrate his glory in our lives and world.
The divine challenge for you today is to see everything in your life through the Lord’s eyes. What divine opportunities are there for you? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
The Resurrected Life: Making All Things New - The Bible promises that those who are in Christ are "new creatures." But how does that transformation take place? This unique Easter-season small group Bible study provides a space in which we can discover what it truly means to live a new life. As we listen, we'll learn how the resurrection of Jesus Christ changes everything - for us. Begin the journey to new life today!
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