Who's The Blind One?
24 August 2018
GraceNotes – A Journey of Discovery
Scripture: John 9:13-23 (Click link for scripture in Bible Gateway)
13 Then they took the man who had been blind to the Pharisees, 14 because it was on the Sabbath that Jesus had made the mud and healed him. 15 The Pharisees asked the man all about it. So he told them, “He put the mud over my eyes, and when I washed it away, I could see!” 16 Some of the Pharisees said, “This man Jesus is not from God, for he is working on the Sabbath.” Others said, “But how could an ordinary sinner do such miraculous signs?” So there was a deep division of opinion among them. 17 Then the Pharisees again questioned the man who had been blind and demanded, “What’s your opinion about this man who healed you?” The man replied, “I think he must be a prophet.” 18 The Jewish leaders still refused to believe the man had been blind and could now see, so they called in his parents. 19 They asked them, “Is this your son? Was he born blind? If so, how can he now see?” 20 His parents replied, “We know this is our son and that he was born blind, 21 but we don’t know how he can see or who healed him. Ask him. He is old enough to speak for himself.” 22 His parents said this because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders, who had announced that anyone saying Jesus was the Messiah would be expelled from the synagogue. 23 That’s why they said, “He is old enough. Ask him.” (John 9:13-23 NLT)
Here is a lesson in legalism: Jesus had done a remarkable miracle, giving sight to a man born blind. With the evidence “right before their eyes,” the Pharisees couldn’t accept that God had healed the man through Jesus because of a legal technicality. In their “eyes” Jesus couldn’t be from God because he did the miracle (worked) on the Sabbath. They were agreed that it was a sin to work on the Sabbath, but they were divided on whether the good Jesus had done outweighed the sin of Sabbath violation. This issue comes up again and again in the Gospels. What if Jesus intentionally did his most public miracles on the Sabbath in order to keep exposing the folly of legalism and to keep trying to help the Pharisees see the truth?
There’s a little streak of legalism in all of us, friends. The more conservative we are in our approach to doctrine and tradition, the more it’s likely to come to the surface when God works outside the boundaries of our experience, our comfort zone. I pray for us all that as we continue our journey of faith, Jesus will continue pushing our buttons and stretching our faith. Let’s keep going and growing! There’s so much more!
Father, Don’t let us get stuck in our ways! Push our buttons! Stretch our boundaries! For the Kingdom’s sake! Amen!