For more help use this Bible Study method
Who is Blind?
by Elaine Pierce
The title my Bible gives to verses 13-34 is fitting but understated: The Pharisees Investigate the Healing." This "investigation" is biased from the start. The Pharisees are threatened by Jesus, and they are looking for any way they can discredit him. Look at some of the ways they do this:
This man [Jesus] is not from God, for he does not keep the Sabbath (v. 16).
They sent for the blind man's parents, since the blind man didn't give them the answers they wanted (v. 18).
They intimidated his parents (v. 22).
They hurled insults at the blind man when he dared to call Jesus a godly man (v. 30).
They "throw him out" [the blind man] and tell him "you are steeped in sin at birth - how dare you lecture us!" (v. 34).
This is not a fair and impartial investigation; this is a sham hearing, a kangaroo court. And we know that Jesus will experience this kind of "trial" as well, and it will result in his death on the cross. Thanks be to God that we know with certainty that he will be resurrected in three days!
The Pharisees were spiritually blind. They couldn't see the truth that was right in front of their eyes. The blind man, on the other hand, knew that his physical blindness had been healed. He was born blind. He didn't deserve to be blind any more than he deserved to see. Jesus opened his eyes, and his life would never be the same.
Before we condemn the Pharisees for their blindness, let's ask the Lord to show us areas in which we need to correct our vision. Are we judging others based on appearance? On their economic status? On whether or not they faithfully attend church? On what we perceive have been their unfair advantages because of birth? We can always find someone to judge, can't we? Let's humbly thank God for his love for us, despite our many sins. One day we will stand before him, and we will say, "Lord, I believe," just like this blind man. What a glorious day that will be.
Lord, I am so often blind to my many faults. Forgive me, and help me to have the eyes of the blind man, who knew that you had healed him, and who believed. Forgive me when I become just like the Pharisees - quick to judge and fearful of losing my status. Thank you for saving me. Amen.