• Kim Feld

2021_11_15 Insight Post- Kim Feld

This week's reading- John 9-10

John devotes the entire ninth chapter of his biography to the story of Jesus healing the man born blind. There’s so much to unpack in John’s retelling, including Jesus refuting the idea that sin is always responsible for illness and disability. We once again see Jesus intentionally healing on the Sabbath, an act that had already brought Him under intense scrutiny. We also see Jesus using something other than His word or touch to heal as He makes a paste of mud and spit to put on the man’s eyes. Why does John devote so much time to this miracle?

My heart goes out to the man who was healed as he is interrogated about the miracle. He doesn’t back down in telling what happened. Can you imagine the magnitude of healing for this man? Living in darkness for so long, he is now flooded with light and color. He knew it was Jesus who healed him, and he says that when questioned. His parents, afraid of becoming outcasts, don’t support their son. He is alone in standing up to the religious leaders. Eventually, the man is thrown out of the temple, and Jesus finds him, revealing who He is to the man. Verse 38 tells us that the man believed and worshipped Jesus.

In reading this chapter, I think back to Jesus’ healing of the man who had been lame for 38 years in chapter five. This man’s healing was also dramatic and would ultimately change his life. And yet, we don’t see the same level of gratitude. John 5:15 tells us that this man, who didn’t know Jesus’ name when He healed him, was also approached by Jesus a second time. But this encounter led the man to tell the Pharisees who had healed him.

John chapter nine is about light and darkness, sight, and blindness. Light is one of John’s themes in his biography, and in this chapter, he masterfully paints a picture of Jesus as the light of the world, coming to bring sight to those who are blind. In the instance of this man, it was physical sight, but for most of us, it’s spiritual sight.

The chapter ends with Jesus challenging the Pharisees once again. But, first, let’s look at Jesus’ words to the man and then the Pharisees:

39 Then Jesus told him, “I entered this world to render judgment—to give sight to the blind and to show those who think they see that they are blind.”

40 Some Pharisees who were standing nearby heard him and asked, “Are you saying we’re blind?”

41 “If you were blind, you wouldn’t be guilty,” Jesus replied. “But you remain guilty because you claim you can see.” (John 9:39-41 NLT)

Jesus’ words are not only a challenge to the religious leaders of His day, but they are for you and me too. We can all have areas of spiritual blindness, places where we think we are aligned with God, but in actuality, we aren’t. The question is, are we open to Jesus showing us our blind spots?

Kim Feld

Executive Director of Education and Outreach