JOHN 9:1-3 1
Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind
And His disciples asked Him, saying,
“Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”
Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his
parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him.
Why had the blind man been born blind?
"that the works of God should be revealed in him"
JOHN 9:4-7 4 I must work the works of Him who sent Me
while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work.
5 As long as I am in the world, I am the
light of the world.” 6 When He had said
these things, He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and He
anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. 7
And He said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which is translated,
Sent). So he went and washed, and came back seeing.
What does Jesus mean in John 9:5?
See "I am
the light of the world" (John 8:12-20).
Why do you think Jesus healed the blind man using clay instead of just saying, "Be healed”?
The answer follows below.
The passage below can be read as a script. If leading a group Bible study,
you can assign
the six roles below and role-play a few times:
JOHN 9:8-34 8
Therefore the neighbors and those who previously had seen that he was
blind said, “Is not this he who sat and begged?”
9 Some said, “This
is he.” Others said, “He is like him.”
He said, “I am he.”
10 Therefore they said to him, “How were
your eyes opened?” 11 He answered
and said, “A Man called Jesus made clay and
anointed my eyes and said to me, ‘Go to the pool of Siloam and wash.’ So
I went and washed, and I received sight.”
12 Then they said to him,
“Where is He?” He said,
“I do not know.” 13 They brought
him who formerly was blind to the Pharisees. 14
Now it was a Sabbath when Jesus made the clay and opened his eyes.
15 Then the Pharisees also asked him
again how he had received his sight. He said to them,
“He put clay on my eyes, and I washed, and I see.”
16 Therefore some of the Pharisees said,
“This Man is not from God, because He does not keep
the Sabbath.” Others said, “How can a man
who is a sinner do such signs?” And there was a division among
them. 17 They said to the blind man
again, “What do you say about Him because He opened
your eyes?” He said, “He is a prophet.”
18 But the Jews did not believe
concerning him, that he had been blind and received his sight, until
they called the parents of him who had received his sight.
19 And they asked them, saying,
“Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How
then does he now see?” 20 His
parents answered them and said, “We know that this
is our son, and that he was born blind; 21
but by what means he now sees we do not know, or who opened his eyes we
do not know. He is of age; ask him. He will speak for himself.”
22 His parents said these things because they feared the Jews,
for the Jews had agreed already that if anyone confessed that He was
Christ, he would be put out of the synagogue. 23
Therefore his parents said, “He is of age; ask him.”
24 So they again called the man who was
blind, and said to him, “Give God the glory! We
know that this Man is a sinner.” 25
He answered and said, “Whether He is a sinner or
not I do not know. One thing I know: that though I was blind, now I
see.” 26 Then they said to him
again, “What did He do to you? How did He open your
eyes?” 27 He answered them,
“I told you already, and you did not listen. Why do
you want to hear it again? Do you also want to become His disciples?”
28 Then they reviled him and said,
“You are His disciple, but we are Moses’ disciples.
29 We know that
God spoke to Moses; as for this fellow, we do not know where He is
from.” 30 The man answered and
said to them, “Why, this is a marvelous thing, that
you do not know where He is from; yet He has opened my eyes!
31 Now we know that God
does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does His
will, He hears him. 32
Since the world began it has been unheard of that anyone opened the eyes
of one who was born blind. 33
If this Man were not from God, He could do nothing.”
34 They answered and said to him,
“You were completely born in sins, and are you
teaching us?” And they cast him out.
Does this work as a script?
The next time someone claims the Bible is said to be an incomprehensible
allegory, the above is one of the many passages that can be shared.
What are they accusing Jesus of in John 9:16?
That He didn’t keep the Sabbath.
What are they saying He did on the Sabbath?
That He worked.
Are they right?
No, they mistakenly categorized doing good as 'work': "Then He
[Jesus] said to them, “What man is there among you who has one sheep, and if
it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will not lay hold of it and lift it out?
Of how much more value then is a man than a sheep? Therefore it is lawful to
do good on the Sabbath.” (Matthew 12:11-12)
What did the blind man's parents fear from the Jews?
Being "put out of the synagogue."
What was the big deal about that? Couldn't they just join
another synagogue down the street or do without it altogether?
Life back then revolved around the synagogue, which was the center of
religious and economic activity. There was one synagogue per town, so being "put out" meant the end of one's
social, religious and economic life in that town.
Why do the Pharisees say that the blind man was "completely born in sins" (John 9:34)?
They were attributing his blindness to the sins of his parents.
Are they right?
No: "Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his
parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him."
What is the blind man's demeanor toward the religious leaders?
He shows no fear or intimidation toward them or the possibility of being put out of the synagogue.
What's remarkable about that?
Having been born blind and therefore deemed into sin, he must have been
ostracized all of his life. This was his chance to impress the local leaders
- tell them what they want to hear, if needed, and gain acceptance into the
community. Yet, he stands by the truth and the One who healed him.
How would you characterize what he tells the Pharisees?
He doesn’t get into complicated theology. He just tells them what he knows.
What does he even admit in John 9:25?
What he doesn't know.
What are the lessons for us?
It’s never too early to be a witness for Christ. Being a witness doesn't mean
we have to have all of the answers, but rather simply telling people what
Jesus did for us and what we do know about Him.