John 9:1 – As Jesus passed by, He saw a man who had been blind from birth.

The miracles that Jesus performed that are recorded in the gospel of John are images or pictures of spiritual miracles that happen in all of our lives when Christ breaks into our world. This miracle of the healing of a blind man stands out from all of the others because this man was born blind, he had never seen anything during his whole life. This is a picture portraying each one of us being born in spiritual blindness, separated from the life of God, until the light of His glory bursts into our world the moment we are born again. Here is how the reformer, Aegidius Hunnius, describes this man.

“When Jesus, together with his disciples, was passing by a place in Jerusalem where beggars gathered, he saw there among the crowd a poor, afflicted man, who, deprived of the sense of sight, was not able to see the pleasant sun or to contemplate the majestic works of this world and the splendor of created things. The contemplation of such things had elsewhere provided even the heathen the means for knowing God. This malady was all the more burdensome because the blindness did not befall him from some cause as an adult but right from infancy, even from his mother’s womb. If those who once had healthy vision are, through some unfortunate accident, deprived of this sense, they will nevertheless always retain in their minds some idea of the things once seen. But those who have never had sight are not able to know anything about the works of God; they are not able to perceive the invisible things of God from the visible things of this world. Moreover, poverty made his misfortune all the worse as he was forced to seek sustenance every day by begging.”

God’s glory is on full display in all that He has made. Being born physically blind robs this blind man from ever seeing the beauty of God’s handiwork on full display in creation. In the same way all of us were born with the malady of spiritual blindness. No amount of religious exercise could open our blind eyes. The only remedy was the touch of the Master’s hand. Just as Jesus opened this man’s eyes by spit, mud, and washing in a pool of water, Jesus opens our eyes by the power of the Word and the Spirit. In a moment of time this blind man found himself looking into the face of His Maker; that’s really all of our story, I was once blind but now I see.

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