John 9. Forum Discussion

Obedience

Have you ever known somebody that really likes to complain? Somebody who’s glass seems to always be half empty. Somebody who looks for negatives in every situation, instead of positives.

The Pharisees were very much like this when it came to Jesus. Their selfish motives made them always try to find the negatives, even in a positive situation. Here in chapter 9, we have the beautiful story of how Jesus heals a blind man that had been blind since birth. His disciples ask Jesus why the man was blind, was it because of his sins, or maybe the sins of his parents?

Jesus answers them beginning in verse 3, “It was neither that this man sinned, nor his parents; but it was so that the works of God might be displayed in him.”

So Jesus spat on the ground and made clay of the spittle. He applied the clay to the blind man’s eyes and instructed him to go and wash in the pool of Siloam. The blind man did exactly as Jesus said and his sight was restored.

Let us emphasize that point again, “The blind man did exactly as Jesus said and his sight was restored.” Sometimes we want to do things our way and not God’s way, and then we complain that we are still “Blind.” We would be much better off to follow the example of the blind man from this story and simply obey God. When we do exactly as God commands, His power works in us and is on display for all to see.

So regarding the blind man who had his sight returned, everyone should be happy, right? Jesus has restored sight to a man that has never seen. Who could possibly find any fault in that? . . . The Pharisees.

The Pharisees were power hungry and jealous of the attention that Jesus was getting. They were aggressively seeking to find a way to arrest Him and have Him put to death. Instead of being happy that this man had his vision restored, the Pharisees complained that this miracle of healing was performed on the Sabbath. What a distorted perception they had! This type of negative thinking is not healthy for us, and more importantly it is not Godly behavior.

John writes beginning in verses 15-27:

“They brought to the Pharisees the man who was formerly blind.Now it was a Sabbath on the day when Jesus made the clay and opened his eyes. Then the Pharisees also were asking him again how he received his sight. And he said to them, “He applied clay to my eyes, and I washed, and I see.” Therefore some of the Pharisees were saying, “This man is not from God, because He does not keep the Sabbath.” But others were saying, “How can a man who is a sinner perform such signs?” And there was a division among them. So they said to the blind man again, “What do you say about Him, since He opened your eyes?” And he said, “He is a prophet.”

The Jews then did not believe it of him, that he had been blind and had received sight, until they called the parents of the very one who had received his sight, and questioned them, saying, “Is this your son, who you say was born blind? Then how does he now see?” His parents answered them and said, “We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind; but how he now sees, we do not know; or who opened his eyes, we do not know. Ask him; he is of age, he will speak for himself.”His parents said this because they were afraid of the Jews; for the Jews had already agreed that if anyone confessed Him to be Christ, he was to be put out of the synagogue. For this reason his parents said, “He is of age; ask him.”

So a second time they called the man who had been blind, and said to him, “Give glory to God; we know that this man is a sinner.” He then answered, “Whether He is a sinner, I do not know; one thing I do know, that though I was blind, now I see.” So they said to him, “What did He do to you? How did He open your eyes?” He answered them, “I told you already and you did not listen; why do you want to hear it again?”

So they not only interrogate the once blind man, they also interrogate his parents to try to find anything they could to hold against Jesus.

This is a sad example of how some will take the beautiful works of Jesus and try to twist them around for personal gain. Jesus wants us to look for the beauty in life and to appreciate what God is doing for us.

Let us look at two scriptures as we conclude today’s lesson. Both scriptures are from Paul’s letter to the Philippians.

Do all things without grumbling or disputing.” – Philippians 2:14

Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.” – Philippians 4:8.

Comments

Virtual Bible Study

Do you have any thoughts or comments that you would like to share regarding today's lesson?

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Michael
Virtual Bible Study

My first thought was that it makes me sad that so many people look for the bad in good situations. But then I thought about it as an opportunity for Christians to let their light shine. If we are optimistic and look for the good in people, we can glorify God by standing out as light in a dark world.

Reply
John

I think it takes work to try and stay positive. Almost like a muscle. If we haven't "worked" on being positive much, it is harder for us to do it. But if we get in the habit of looking for the positives in life, we will do it more and more.

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