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17. I ONCE WAS BLIND, BUT NOW I SEE
John 9:1-7, 24-25, 35-38 (read 8:59)


Before reading the Passage.

When we come to John 9, we come to the sixth sign – miracle recorded by John...the opening of a blind man's eyes.

• Jesus is recorded to have healed five blind men in the Gospels, but this healing miracle is different than any other healing miracle. This is the only recorded miracle where someone was healed with a disease or handicap who was born with the physical problem. All the other healings were performed on people who got the disease or handicap in childhood or adulthood.

• Of all the handicaps that can curse men and women, blindness must be one of the saddest.

• But there is something worse than physical blindness, and that is spiritual blindness.

• The truth is that every person who is born, is born spiritually blind.

• Everyone of us need a divine operation...performed by the Great Physician...so that we can see, and see clearly spiritually.

Read the Passage. There really should not be a chapter division between John 8 and 9. They ran Jesus out of town because He declared that He was the light of the world. See 8:59.

I. The Condition of the Man 9:1

Jesus saw the man, but the man never saw Jesus...he couldn't.

• From birth, he had always been dependent either on a friendly arm or his uncertain cane.

• This man had never seen his father or mother..nor his friends or a sunset. His was a dark world where others could easily take advantage of him.

• Discrimination, rejection and humiliation were his constant companions.

• He would have to sit patiently as others described what it was like to see their surroundings.

Now as he begged outside the temple, he heard someone cry, “While I am in the world, I am the Light of the world.” Then in the unusual silence that followed, he heard that same man kneel close to him and gently spit on the ground. He felt gentle hands apply the damp clay to his eyes and heard the words, “Go, wash in the Pool of Siloam.” Then he heard the man walk away without staying to see if he was going to obey His words.

I wonder how he felt. Probably, a little foolish. Even though he was blind, he must have had some idea that he was creating a scene as he made his way to Siloam with his eyes covered with mud.

But I also think his heart began to pound with the swelling possibility that he might receive his sight – “What if it really works?”

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Then as he washed in the Pool, light poured into his being. He could see! The sky, trees, faces.

I think he began to shout, “I can see...I can see!!!” I think he went to his mom's house – without his cane...and said, “Look, Mom, I can see!”

But there is more than one kind of blindness. There is the blindness of eyes and then there is the blindness of the spirit.

• 2 Corinthians 4:3-4

• John 3:3 “Unless you are born again, you cannot SEE the kingdom of God.”

Take a good, long look at Jesus! “As Jesus passed by, He saw a man which had been blind from his birth.”

• Jesus is never indifferent to our needs. There has never been a man with such a compassionate heart as Jesus!

• Jesus came to this man and healed him without being asked to do so. This man never requested a cure, nor was he brought by others to Jesus for healing.

By the way, God takes full responsibility for those born with defects or handicaps. Exodus 4:10-11.

The Confusion About the Man 9:2-3

Do you believe the disciples? They didn't see this poor may in pity; they saw him as a puzzle!

• Can you imagine these disciples standing over this man having a theological discussion...”Lord, look at this man. What caused his blindness? Did he sin or did his parents sin that he was born blind?”

• “Lord, whose fault is it that this man was born blind? Obviously God is punishing him for some sin. What was it?”

Is that the way you look at someone who is suffering? “I wonder what great sin caused them to have to suffer that way?”

When you see someone suffering, do you just assume that it's God's punishment for sin?

Why do people suffer? The disciples saw three possibilities:

1. Prenatal Sin

a. How can a baby sin in its mother's womb? Does that seem silly to you? It does to me.

b. The Bible says we are born with a sin nature, but we don't commit some sin in the womb.

How are we tempted in the womb?

2. Parental Sin

a. After a conference a young lady came to the speaker, tearfully confided that she had been

pregnant and had lost the baby in a miscarriage. She was convinced the baby had died

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because God was punishing her for some sin she had committed.

- That thought had been nagging at her mind, robbing her life of peace and joy.

- Then the speaker turned to Ezekiel 18:19-20

b. **Our children may suffer the consequences of our sins, but not the judgment or punishment

for our sins.

- Exodus 20:5; 34:7

- Numbers 14:18

- Deuteronomy 5:9

c. Children do suffer the consequences of the parent's sins...the parent with AIDS...the drug

addict.

3. Personal Sin

a. John 5:14 – “Sin no more, lest a worst thing come unto you.”

b. Jesus did not mean that the parents of the blind man had never sinned, but that THIS

blindness was not the result of their sin.

4. The option the disciples did not consider was the suffering was no one's fault, but the suffering gives God an opportunity to display His power and life in the life of the one suffering.

a. Paul with his thorn in the flesh.

b. Lazarus was sick and died that Christ might be glorified.

III. The Cure for the Man 9:6-7

What a strange sight for the disciples watching Jesus put clay on the man's eyes. “Why is Jesus doing that? He's already blind!”

• I don't know why Jesus did it...nor does anyone else, although there have been many who guessed why He did it.

• I'll tell you this, He didn't need to use the mud or the pool to heal the man.

• But when they asked him what happened to him, he could say, “Jesus did it.”

• Note John 9:24-25. If you have been given spiritual sight – one thing you know, once you were blind; now you see.

IV. The Conversation of the Man 9:35-38

Notice:

• 9:ll A man called Jesus

• 9:17 A prophet

• 9:33 A man of God

• 9:38 Lord, I believe...worshiped Him

What a Testimony! “I once was blind, but now I see!” Jesus touched him and he was changed forever.

Do you have a testimony? When you receive spiritual sight, people will know it!

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A little boy heard the pastor say, “You can ask Jesus to come into your heart and He'll come in.” The little boy said to the pastor, “But Jesus is a man in a man's body. I'm just a little boy. If I ask Him to come in, He'll be sticking out all over me.” The preacher said, “That's right!”

It is no secret what God can do,

What He's done for others,

He'll do for you.

With arms wide open,

He'll pardon you.

It is no secret what God can do.