LIGHT OF THE WORLD
Read: John 9:18-41
“They still did not believe that he had been blind and had received his sight until they sent for the man’s parents. “Is this your son?” they asked. “Is this the one you say was born blind? How is it that now he can see?” “We know he is our son,” the parents answered, “and we know he was born blind. But how he can see now, or who opened his eyes, we don’t know. Ask him. He is of age; he will speak for himself.” His parents said this because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders, who already had decided that anyone who acknowledged that Jesus was the Messiah would be put out of the synagogue. That was why his parents said, “He is of age; ask him.” A second time they summoned the man who had been blind. “Give glory to God by telling the truth,” they said. “We know this man is a sinner.” He replied, “Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!”
Then they asked him, “What did he do to you? How did he open your eyes?” He answered, “I have told you already and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you want to become his disciples too?” Then they hurled insults at him and said, “You are this fellow’s disciple! We are disciples of Moses! We know that God spoke to Moses, but as for this fellow, we don’t even know where he comes from.” The man answered, “Now that is remarkable! You don’t know where he comes from, yet he opened my eyes. We know that God does not listen to sinners. He listens to the godly person who does his will. Nobody has ever heard of opening the eyes of a man born blind. If this man were not from God, he could do nothing.” To this they replied, “You were steeped in sin at birth; how dare you lecture us!” And they threw him out.
Jesus heard that they had thrown him out, and when he found him, he said, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?” “Who is he, sir?” the man asked. “Tell me so that I may believe in him.” Jesus said, “You have now seen him; in fact, he is the one speaking with you.” Then the man said, “Lord, I believe,” and he worshiped him. Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind.” Some Pharisees who were with him heard him say this and asked, “What? Are we blind too?” Jesus said, “If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see, your guilt remains.” ” (NIV John 9:18-41)
Study: In his prologue, John said we must choose to see the light Jesus brought (John 1:10-11). John graphically portrayed the terrible results of spiritual blindness—the blind man’s talk with the Pharisees would be comical if it weren’t so tragic. Rather than admit anything good about Jesus, the religious leaders grasped at straws to deny the plain fact that a man born blind could now see! In his beautiful confession of faith in verse 25, the man showed that he could “see” more clearly than the religious leaders.
In verse 25, you may recognize the words John Newton used when he wrote “Amazing Grace” centuries later. Newton used the words to confess his sorrow at having once sailed a slave ship that carried holds jammed with captive Africans across the ocean to a life of slavery. In what parts of your spiritual life is this your testimony—what do you now see to which you were once blind? How will you apply what you have “seen” about Jesus this Christmas season?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, please continue your “eye surgery” in my life, clearing my vision and moving my heart to follow you more completely. Amen.