Any of us blind? “Not I,” you say. Don’t be too sure. Blindness can have more than one meaning. Today we will study an encounter of a blind man with Jesus and see how his healing can be ours too.
II. BIBLE READINGS
John 9:1 Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind from birth. 2 And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” 3 Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him.4 “I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work. 5 “As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” 6 When He had said these things, He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. 7 And He said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which is translated, Sent). So he went and washed, and came back seeing. 8 Therefore the neighbors and those who previously had seen that he was blind said, “Is not this he who sat and begged?” 9 Some said, “This is he.” Others said, “He is like him.” He said, “I am he.” 10 Therefore they said to him, “How were your eyes opened?” 11 He answered and said, “A Man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes and said to me, ‘Go to the pool of Siloam and wash.’ So I went and washed, and I received sight.” 12 Then they said to him, “Where is He?” He said, “I do not know.” 13 They brought him who formerly was blind to the Pharisees. 14 Now it was a Sabbath when Jesus made the clay and opened his eyes. 15 Then the Pharisees also asked him again how he had received his sight. He said to them, “He put clay on my eyes, and I washed, and I see.” 16 Therefore some of the Pharisees said, “This Man is not from God, because He does not keep the Sabbath.” Others said, “How can a man who is a sinner do such signs?” And there was a division among them. 17 They said to the blind man again, “What do you say about Him because He opened your eyes?” He said, “He is a prophet.” 18 But the Jews did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind and received his sight, until they called the parents of him who had received his sight. 19 And they asked them, saying, “Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then does he now see?” 20 His parents answered them and said, “We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind; 21 “but by what means he now sees we do not know, or who opened his eyes we do not know. He is of age; ask him. He will speak for himself.” 22 His parents said these things because they feared the Jews, for the Jews had agreed already that if anyone confessed that He was Christ, he would be put out of the synagogue. 23 Therefore his parents said, “He is of age; ask him.” 24 So they again called the man who was blind, and said to him, “Give God the glory! We know that this Man is a sinner.” 25 He answered and said, “Whether He is a sinner or not I do not know. One thing I know: that though I was blind, now I see.” 26 Then they said to him again, “What did He do to you? How did He open your eyes?” 27 He answered them, “I told you already, and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you also want to become His disciples?” 28 Then they reviled him and said, “You are His disciple, but we are Moses’ disciples. 29 “We know that God spoke to Moses; as for this fellow, we do not know where He is from.” 30 The man answered and said to them, “Why, this is a marvelous thing, that you do not know where He is from; yet He has opened my eyes! 31 “Now we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does His will, He hears him. 32 “Since the world began it has been unheard of that anyone opened the eyes of one who was born blind. 33 “If this Man were not from God, He could do nothing.” 34 They answered and said to him, “You were completely born in sins, and are you teaching us?” And they cast him out. 35 Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and when He had found him, He said to him, “Do you believe in the Son of God?” 36 He answered and said, “Who is He, Lord, that I may believe in Him?” 37 And Jesus said to him, “You have both seen Him and it is He who is talking with you.” 38 Then he said, “Lord, I believe!” And he worshiped Him. 39 And Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, that those who do not see may see, and that those who see may be made blind.” 40 Then some of the Pharisees who were with Him heard these words, and said to Him, “Are we blind also?” 41 Jesus said to them, “If you were blind, you would have no sin; but now you say, ‘We see.’ Therefore your sin remains. (NKJ)
A. The Setting (vv. 1‑5)
1. What did Jesus mean when He said “I am the light of the world” in verse 5? Why does the world need “light”?
2. In what ways is the world in darkness?
3. In verse 5, Jesus says, “But while I am still here in the world, I give it my light.” Now that He is no longer in the world, does it mean the world has no more light?
B. The Healing (vv. 6‑12)
Why did Jesus go to the trouble of mixing mud and spittle and asking the blind man to go and wash? Could He not heal him by saying a word?
1. What is the significance of Jesus using mud and spittle, which are seemingly worthless, to heal a man’s eyes?
APPLICATION: Do you often feel you have no special talent? Do you feel you don’t have the ability to communicate Jesus to others? If you are willing to place yourself in Jesus’ hands, He can do wondrous things through you.
3. What was the “suit of &e blind man’s faith and obedience?
4. Let us see what effects the healing had on the formerly blind man himself and his neighbors. What reactions did his neighbors have? What reactions did he himself have?
APPLICATION: Blindness here can have a two‑fold meaning: physical blindness and spiritual blindness.
1. What is spiritual blindness” Are your spiritual eyes opened? Do you notice the change in yourself?
2. When you receive Jesus into your heart, is it possible to have no change in your life? What will the effects be on yourself and on your friends?
C. The Pharisees’ Reaction (vv. 13‑23)
1. What reactions did the Pharisees have? When they investigated, did they really want to know the truth, or did they have other motives? Why were they always trying to find fault with Jesus?
2. Why did the healed man’s parents not dare speak the truth? (v. 22)
APPLICATION: In what ways are we like the healed man’s parents?
D. The Second Confrontation (vv. 24-34)
1. Since the Pharisees were so authoritative and much more educated than the healed man, why was the healed man so courageous in arguing with the Pharisees? (Because he had the experience of personally being healed by Jesus).
APPLICATION: How do we apply the above in our lives?
2. Contrast the answer of the healed man with that of his parents. What caused the difference?
APPLICATION: In our spiritual lives, what is a “first‑hand” experience and what is “second‑hand”?
3. Although the healed man gave a courageous testimony about Jesus, what happened to him? (v. 34) What do we learn from this?
E. Eyes Fully Opened (vv. 35-41)
1. Why did Jesus come and look for the healed man?
2. Trace the various stages of the man’s understanding of who Jesus was from verses 11,17, 38.
3. What is the significance of this, and how does it apply in our lives?
4. Verse 39 seems difficult to understand at first glance, but it is really the key to the whole passage we are studying today. What does verse 39 mean?
5. After our spiritual eyes are opened, is it still possible for our sight to be impaired? If so, what are the causes?
Today we see the encounter of Jesus with a blind man. The “blindness’ can have a two fold meaning—physical and spiritual. And though none of us may be blind in the physical sense, it is important to examine ourselves to see if our spiritual eyes have been fully opened by Jesus.