In this passage Jesus heals a man born blind and shows us the sorrow of uninformed thinking, the horror of rejecting Christ, and the joy of walking in certainty.
1. The Disciples: from fog to understanding
“As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. And his disciples asked him, ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?’ Jesus answered, ‘It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him.’” John 9:1-3
The Parents: the fear of social alienation (a fog that leads to darkness)
“The Jews did not believe that he had been blind and had received his sight, until they called the parents of the man who had received his sight and asked them, ‘Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then does he now see?’ His parents answered, ‘We know that this is our son and that he was born blind. But how he now sees we do not know, nor do we know who opened his eyes. Ask him; he is of age. He will speak for himself.’ (His parents said these things because they feared the Jews, for the Jews had already agreed that if anyone should confess Jesus to be Christ, he was to be put out of the synagogue.) Therefore his parents said, ‘He is of age; ask him.’” John 9:18-23
“They answered him, ‘You were born in utter sin, and would you teach us?’ And they cast him out.” John 9:34
“One reason why many people find Creative Evolution so attractive is that it gives one much of the emotional comfort of believing in God and none of the less pleasant consequences. When you are feeling fit and the sun is shining and you do not want to believe that the whole universe is a mere mechanical dance of atoms, it is nice to be able to think of this great mysterious Force rolling on through the centuries and carrying you on its crest. If, on the other hand, you want to do something rather shabby, the Life-Force, being only a blind force, with no morals and no mind, will never interfere with you like that troublesome God we learned about when we were children. The Life-Force is a sort of tame God. You can switch it on when you want, but it will not bother you. All the thrills of religion and none of the cost. Is the Life-Force the greatest achievement of wishful thinking the world has yet seen?” C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
The Blind Man: The joy of growing certainty
- vs 11 - “the man called Jesus”
- vs 17 - “He is a prophet”
- vs 38 - “Lord, I believe”
(confessing that Jesus is the Son of Man or the long anticipated One: eternally God and fully human)
“Jesus said, ‘For judgment I came into this world, that those who do not see may see, and those who see may become blind.’” John 9:39
1. How does knowing the Bible blow away the fog of cultural thinking? (note the disciples #2)
2. What do the parents of the healed man fear?
3. What does Lewis mean when he says that “the Life-Force is a sort of obtained God”? How does the attitude of the Pharisees towards Jesus fit this model?
What were some of the results in the life of the man who had been healed? (mister no name)