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Focus! Keeping Your Eyes on Jesus in a Near-Sighted, Distracted World! (The Blind Man in John 9 – Part 2)

We are taking a number of our posts to work our way through this most extensively described miracle in all of Scripture — the story of the man born blind. His lack of vision, as we will find out, will be healed by Jesus. And there are a number of spiritual lessons for us as we look at his life.

In this series of blog posts on FOCUS I want to examine my own vision and ask if my spiritual eyesight is getting dim, distracted, or damaged by choices I make. We will be looking at a number of key biblical passages which emphasize this sense of sight. I am particularly looking forward to pondering the healing miracles which turned blind people into sighted people.

In our study of John 9 we’ve seen that the Lord Jesus knew that this man was blind from birth (perhaps from hearing his unique begging call). The disciples asked Jesus a profound question of causality — “Who sinned? This man or his parents that he was born blind?” Jesus then corrects the disciples’ poor multiple choice question, for it provided only two possible responses, both of which would have been wrong.

Instead Jesus declares that this man’s birth defect was not the result of God’s judgment on him or his parents. And Jesus dogmatically proclaims why this happened to this man: “This happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him” (v. 3). The works of God will focus on this man’s receiving his physical vision for the first time in his life.

Our passage further reads: As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work. While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”

Day or Night?: After answering the disciples’ question, Jesus makes an enigmatic statement about day and night. He says that “we must do the works of him who sent me” as long as it is day. We will discover later that the miracle Jesus will do for this man will be done on the Sabbath!

I worked for seven long years for UPS from about 11 at night until 4 in the morning while going to graduate school. Modern electricity turns night into day — and people work all hours of the night. In Jesus’ day when the sun went down the work stopped. Night prohibited most labor.

The Light of the World: This reference to day and night might symbolically be speaking of the presence of the Lord Jesus in the world. “Night” (His death, burial, and resurrection) will come and He will return to the Father. But at this moment He is in the world, doing the Father’s will, embodying light itself. It is fascinating that the Lord Jesus says of His followers in Matthew 5:14 something quite remarkable: “You are the light of the world. A town build on a hill cannot be hidden.”

Today’s Challenge: Would you say you are doing the works of the One who sent the Savior into the world? Are you taking advantage of the “day”? How do you and I practically flesh out being “the light of the world”?

 
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Posted by on August 20, 2021 in focus

 

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Insight from a Blind Man (a Study of John 9): Part 5

screen-shot-2017-02-13-at-9-05-43-am We live in a 24/7 world where darkness has been turned into light by the invention of the light bulb!  In Jesus’ time when it got dark, people turned off the TV and went to bed.  Daylight was for working; nighttime was for sleeping.

This man born blind had only known NIGHT.  He had never seen a sun rise or a sun set or a flower or a pretty girl or an angry Pharisee.  It was always night for him.

The Lord Jesus was fond of using metaphors screen-shot-2017-02-19-at-5-57-08-am in the gospel of John.  He uses the metaphor of birth in chapter three, of water in chapter four, of bread in chapter six, of darkness (night) in chapter nine.

Jesus knows that He is on a mission to do “the works of God” and the time to do those works is the daytime.  As the light of the world He was personally obligated “to do the works of him who sent me.”

Actually, when you think about it, the expression “the light of the world” implies nighttime, doesn’t it?  We don’t need light during the day, but during the night.  Perhaps Jesus is saying that this world is very dark, even in the daytime.

Jesus’ followers, we are told in Matthew 5, are “the light of the world.  A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.”  In a real sense, we have taken the place of Jesus as the light of the world!  Earlier in John 8 Jesus had said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”  Jesus says, “While I am in the world . . .”  The implication is that He was here only for a short time and soon would be returning to His Father.  And in this in-between-time, we are the light of the world.

Letting your light shine? (to be continued)

 

 
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Posted by on March 16, 2017 in john 9

 

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