Scripture: Jesus heard that they had cast (the formerly blind beggar) out, and having found him (Jesus) said, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?”
He answered, “And who is he, sire, that I may believe in him?” Jesus said to him, “You have seen him, and it is he who is speaking to you.” He said, “Lord I believe”, and he worshipped him.
Jesus said, “For judgment I came into this world, that those who do not see may see and those who “see” may become blind.
Some of the Pharisees near him heard these things and said to him, “Are we also blind?” Jesus said to them, “If you were blind, you would have no guilt; but now that you say, “We see”, your guilt remains. John 9:35-41
Observation: Why did Jesus come into the world? And what does that have to do with my perception of things?
Analysis: There is a saying: “God helps those who helps themselves.”
While there may be a smidgen of truth in that (only a smidgen), this is a saying that identifies the road of self-reliance and self-righteousness. If I am talking about being religious, then it is that big green board on the interstate that proclaims, “Turn here, this is the exit for the Pharisee Boulevard.”
The issue (for me at least) is that this turn off sneaks up on me; is not really marked well on Google maps; but is wide and easy to get on and stay on. The road of self is easy to navigate.
The story here is about the difference between a blind guy and those with so-called sight. The miracle of restoring this guy’s sight is wonderful—but it wasn’t about sight restoration, it was about a testimony concerning the local branch of Pharisee Nation.
They asked (trying to find the cause and effect of the beggar’s handicap), “Is he blind because of something he is or something he has done”—as if this blindness could be categorized that way. They continued to press, “Or did this poor man suffer because of something his parents did?”—again attempting to find cause.
Jesus said, “Neither. He is blind because of the will of God for this very time, as a testimony against you.” The blind beggar was healed. The episode doesn’t end there—he was interrogated, beaten; his parent interrogated, etc. etc.
Finally, Jesus introduces himself to the beggar. Additionally, Jesus speaks a core principle: “For judgment I came into this world—to bring sight to the ones who want sight and to bring blindness to those who think they are seeing but are actually blind.
Here is the real saying: “God helps those who admit they are helpless.” If I say “I see”, I can’t be healed of blindness because I don’t need healing, right?
Hammer point: Guarding my heart is an effort to make every day. The road of self-righteousness is wide and easy; the path of godliness is narrow and hard—but is worth the effort.
Prayer: Father God, I am blind—an every daysort of blindness. Show me your wondrous works that I may worship You. AMEN.