13 December 2016

BSF 2016-2017: John 9:1-41

As we ended chapter 8 last week, we saw people picking up stones to kill Jesus, but He slipped away. Despite the threats against His life, Jesus did not fear anything, as evidenced at the beginning of chapter 9.

Jesus noticed a man who had been blind since birth. The disciples asked about the source of the man’s blindness – was it because he sinned or because his parents sinned? Jesus told them that the man was blind so God’s glory could be revealed in him. The disciples saw the man as an object lesson, but Jesus saw the man’s need.

Jesus emphasized again that He was doing God’s work. And He said, “I am the light of the world.” He brings light to the darkness.

Jesus spit on the ground, made mud, and put it on the man’s eyes. He instructed the man to wash in the Pool of Siloam. The man had to take a step of faith. When the man obeyed Jesus’ command, the man was able to see. For the first time, he could see everything around him!

Soon some people recognized that this blind man could see. They questioned his healing. When the people questioned the man, he simply told them what happened. They asked who healed him; he honestly didn’t know because he had never seen Jesus.

The people brought the man to the Pharisees. This healing took place on the Sabbath, so the Pharisees attacked Jesus for violating Sabbath laws. They rejected the man’s miraculous healing. The Pharisees questioned the man, and he called Jesus a prophet. He recognized that Jesus was from God.

The Pharisees and other Jews still didn’t believe the man’s healing. So they turned to the man’s parents. His parents said that he was their son and he was born blind. But they did not claim to know how he was healed. The man’s parents were afraid of the Pharisees.

For a second time, the Pharisees summoned the man and asked him who healed him. The man said, “One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!” The man became bolder and called himself a disciple of Jesus. And he said, “If this man were not from God, he could do nothing.”

The Pharisees threw the man out of the temple. By doing this, the Pharisees were throwing him out of every religious and social perk of being a Jew.

Next Jesus sought out the man. Jesus asked him if he believed in the Son of Man. Jesus identified Himself as the Son of Man. Then the man confessed that he believed, and he worshiped Jesus.

This man’s healing is a picture of a believer’s conversion. Everyone is spiritually blind. We are lost, and we don’t recognize our lost condition. After we come to Christ, He reveals Himself to us. He opens our eyes so we can see who He is and what He has done for us. Then we worship Him.

The religious leaders ask Jesus if they are blind too. They were spiritually blind because they rejected Jesus as God and Healer. They refused to believe in Him and remained in their sin and guilt.

Jesus compassionately and graciously healed a man who was blind from birth. The man didn’t deserve Jesus’ grace or healing. Jesus healed a man who did not believe in him. The man’s faith grew with each round of questioning.

Things to Think About
  • How do you respond to the needs of others?
  • The blind man was changed and others noticed. Do other people notice that you are a Christian? Does your spiritual sight result in a life that looks different than unbelievers’ lives?
  • How do you respond to others’ rejection, ridicule, and persecution because you believe in Jesus?
  • Does pressure from others change what you think or say?
  • Encountering Jesus results in stronger faith or a harder heart.

This Week’s Memory Verse
As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one
can work. John 9:4 NIV