Sunday, January 25, 2015

Seeing He Believed (John 9:35-41)

“Jesus heard that they had cast him out, and having found him He said, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?” He answered, “And who is He, sir, 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 worshiped 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, ESV)

Having heard that the Jews had sent away the man to whom He had given sight, Jesus found him. He asked him if he believed in the Son of Man. The man, still not putting two and two together, asked Jesus who this Son of Man was so that he might believe in Him. The interesting thing is that the man did not tell Jesus that he could not believe in Him because He did not know Him. Rather, already recognizing Jesus to be a prophet from God, he asked Jesus who the Son of Man was so that he could believe. It appears that Jesus had so impressed him that the man was willing to believe anything that Jesus told him. This is a huge difference from the Jews who constantly demanded more proof, and when they got that proof they criticized for how it was done. Unlike the Jews who the others feared, this man was ready to believe. He had seen enough.

In response to the man’s stated willingness to believe, Jesus told the man that He Himself was the Son of Man. “You have seen Him, and it is He who is speaking to you.” To this the man said, “Lord, I believe.” These are pretty amazing words. The man said three simple words that made all of the difference between death and eternal life. He was given physical sight not knowing who gave it to him, and He was given spiritual sight knowing that it came from the Son of Man. And the man’s response in his belief was to worship Jesus.

As we continue to read we discover that this conversation did not happen in private or in a sound proof room. It happened out where others could see and hear. Jesus told the man that He had come into the world to bring judgment, and in doing this those who did not see would be given sight but at the same time those who thought they knew it all would prove just how blind they are. The Pharisees standing nearby heard these words and jumped into the conversation, confronting Jesus and asking Him if He was calling them blind. To this Jesus pointed to how their own knowledge of God stood as their judge. If they did not know the things of God then they might have been among the blind who would have their eyes opened and be given sight and life. But knowing the things of God, and even boasting in how well they know them they prove their own guilt. They know exactly where they have violated God’s statues, and they stand fully aware of their guilt. Their pride in themselves proves just how blind they really are, while the blind know their great need and are willing to accept sight.

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