#3 Testimonial: Jesus encounters a blind man whom He heals. A dispute arises among his neighbors as to whether he was in fact the blind beggar that was healed. The blind man insists, I am the man. How then were your eyes opened? they demanded. He replied, The man they call Jesus made some mud and put it on my eyes. He told me to go to Siloam and wash. So I went and washed, and then I could see. Where is this man? they asked him. I don't know, he said (Jn. 9:98b-12).
In frustration, they brought him to the Pharisees who also asked him how he had received his sight. He put mud on my eyes, the man replied, and I washed, and now I see. A second time they summoned the man who had been blind. Give glory to God, they said. We know this man is a sinner. He replied, Whether he is a sinner or not, I don't know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see! Then they asked him, What did He do to you? How did He open your eyes? He answered, I have told you already and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you want to become His disciples, too? Then they hurled insults at him and said, You are this fellow's disciple! We are disciples of Moses! We know that God spoke to Moses, but as for this fellow, we don't even know where He comes from. The man answered, Now that is remarkable! You don't know where He comes from, yet He opened my eyes. We know that God does not listen to sinners. He listens to the godly man who does his will. 32 Nobody has ever heard of opening the eyes of a man born blind. If this man were not from God, He could do nothing. To this they replied, You were steeped in sin at birth; how dare you lecture us! And they threw him out (Jn. 9:15, 24-34).
#4 Relational: Jesus and the disciples arrived by boat on the Sea of Galilee in Decapolis. Christ proceeded to cast demons out of a possessed man. Upon His departure from the area, the man begs to go with Jesus. Jesus replied, "Go home to your family and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how He has had mercy on you" (Mk. 5:19). The result? So the man went away and began to tell in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him. And all the people were amazed (Mk. 5:20). William Barclay makes the point that this man was to be the first seed of what in time was to become a mighty harvest. Is it not true that our family and relatives are our most natural relationships? Are they not our Acts 1:8 Jerusalem?
This week, may you experience His grace, peace, and protection.
R. Dwight Hill