John Day 17: The Man Born Blind

Christ Cures the Blind Man by Alexey Pismenny

Gospel of John Reading Plan
Day 17 Reading:
John 9:1-41

Bringing the Word to Life
“I once was blind, but now I see.” Write a one sentence testimony of your life before meeting Jesus and how your life is now. Drop it by your church office or e-mail it.

Pastor Lisa’s Journal
He answered, “The man called Jesus made mud, spread it on my eyes, and said to me, ‘Go to Siloam and wash.’ Then I went and washed and received my sight.”- John 9:11

Jesus performs another powerful sign; he heals a man who was born blind. In doing so he destroys the false teaching that tragedy and disease are always caused by a person’s sin. The man who is healed comes to faith in Christ while the trained religious leaders remain blind to who Jesus is and the salvation he offers.

In this story, Jesus’ actions reveal to me the character of God

  • Jesus approaches the man– God sees us, knows us, and makes the first move (prevenient grace). God comes to us with the offer of healing and new life.
  • Jesus makes mud– Our God is holy, yet is willing to come down to our level, to be hands on, personal and intimate (how intimate is spit!), to get messy and dirty so we might be whole. Jesus making mud reminds me of Genesis 2 where God makes Adam (a whole person) out of mud and breathes life into him. (Adam literally means earth man or mud man. Coming to faith requires remembering we are mortal/dust and in need of God’s sustaining and redeeming love.) I see Jesus smiling with a child-like delight while making the mud pies.
  • Go and wash – God cleanses us, especially in the waters of baptism. We are born anew through water and the spirit. (John 3)
  • I went and washed and received my sight – Faith comes through hearing and responding. The man follows Jesus’ instructions and his eyes are opened; not only his physical eyes, but the eyes of his soul. The man now has both sight and insight. Like Saul/Paul, the man’s encounter with Christ results in the scales falling from his eyes. (Acts 9) “When one turns to the Lord, the veil is removed.” (2 Corinthians 3:16) The man now sees and understands and responds to the world through the lens of faith, through the eyes of Christ. (Check out today’s picture where Christ is portrayed as literally handing the blind man eyes.)

Prayer entitled Blind Trust by Steve Garnaas Holmes
God, help me to trust
that with you there is no deserving,
no punishment,
no imprisonment in the past;
only grace,
and the opportunity to receive it.
Open the eyes of my heart,
that whatever my circumstances
I may see your grace,
trust your unfinished work in me,
and know that I was born that your love
might be revealed in me,
and that, unseen,
you stand beside me
ready to heal.

Two songs for extended prayer…
Open Our Eyes Lord, by Bob Cull (CCLI #1572)
Open The Eyes Of My Heart, by Paul Baloche (CCLI #2298355)

For a reader’s theater script of this story, please click here
For another reflection on this passage from The Upper Room, click here
For a reflection by Steve Garnaas Holmes entitled So We May Become Blind, click here

For more information on the Gospel of John Reading Plan, click here

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