John 9:11                            He Opened My Eyes                           6/13/2004     ßà

 

 

 

 

 

#1.       A Man That Is Called Jesus (John 9:11, Col 2:9, Rev 19:13, John 1:1-3)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#2.       A Miracle of Mercy (Eph 2:4-5, 1:4-5, John 9:11, 2Cor 1:21)

 

 

 

 

 

 

#3.            Identified With Him (John 9:11, Rom 8:7, Luke 12:8, John 9:16-17)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please open your Bibles to the Gospel according to John 9:1 (2X). We have been here already last week. This is the familiar story of the healing of a man who was born blind from birth. The sermon of last week focused on verses 1-7 of this 9th chapter of John. Today we will see what the rest of this chapter shall teach us concerning salvation, because the healing of this blind man is an excellent picture of what salvation is. The title of the sermon today is, He Opened My Eyes (2X). What does it mean that He opened my eyes? Let me quote to you from John 1:13, “Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God”. What does it mean that He opened my eyes? In the spirit of John 1:13 we can answer this question as follows: It means that the Lord Jesus Christ saved me, and God the Holy Spirit opened my eyes to it. I did not save myself by making a decision to believe on Jesus, or to be baptized in water. My earthly father did not make a decision to save me by having me baptized in water. My forefathers did not save me by making me a descendant of solid Jewish stock. It is none of those things. God saved me, and then God opened my eyes to it. He did it 100%. The amazing thing is this: The Gospel according to John is one of the most popular Gospel narratives. Here, in the Gospel of John, the dominant theme is, “Salvation by grace alone”. Throughout this Gospel story you can find this theme again and again, often several times on every page: God saves people by grace alone, and not by any of us wanting to become saved. How then do people miss it? How can it be that most churches today will believe a “Do it yourself salvation” rather than a “Salvation by grace alone”? Is it not because they are blind? How can a blind man be made to see? A man who is born blind can only see if God opens his eyes. We cannot help him. We cannot explain to a blind man what the color red looks like. He needs new eyes and he needs a new brain. So, let us turn to the first bullet point in the sermon outline:

Why did I say this? We know that the Lord Jesus Christ has compassion. But why did I call Him a Redeemer? What is a Redeemer? A Redeemer redeems people from the condition they are in. All mankind is born in a condition of being enslaved to Sin and Satan. That is how we come into this world. When Christ redeemed us He bought us back. We were lost when Adam sinned and Adam sold himself and all the human race into enslavement to Satan. But Christ bought back those in the human race who were favored by the Father before they were ever born. Christ bought back these individuals when He atoned for their sins on that 1st Good Friday in the year AD 33. That is why He is called Our Redeemer. We know that we have been redeemed, because we believe this. God gives this faith only to those whom the Lord Jesus Christ redeemed on the cross. That is why He is called Our Redeemer. The Bible declares that our God delights in mercy. Our God delights in compassion on those whom He chose to save. That is why the Lord Jesus Christ had compassion on this man:

Joh 9:1 ¶ And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth.

Joh 9:2-3,  And his disciples asked him, saying,  Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he

was born blind?              Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.

Joh 9:4-5  I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.               As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.

Joh 9:6  When he had thus spoken, he spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay,

Joh 9:7  And said unto him, Go, wash in the pool of Siloam, (which is by interpretation, Sent.) He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing.

Joh 9:8 ¶ The neighbours therefore, and they which before had seen him that he was blind, said, Is not this he that sat and begged?

Joh 9:9  Some said, This is he: others said, He is like him: but he said, I am he.

Joh 9:10  Therefore said they unto him, How were thine eyes opened?

Joh 9:11  He answered and said, A man that is called Jesus made clay, and anointed mine eyes, and said unto me, Go to the pool of Siloam, and wash: and I went and washed, and I received sight.

Joh 9:12  Then said they unto him, Where is he? He said, I know not.

Joh 9:13 ¶ They brought to the Pharisees him that aforetime was blind.

Joh 9:14  And it was the Sabbath day when Jesus made the clay, and opened his eyes.

Joh 9:15  Then again the Pharisees also asked him how he had received his sight. He said unto them, He put clay upon mine eyes, and I washed, and do see.

Joh 9:16  Therefore said some of the Pharisees, This man is not of God, because he keepeth not the Sabbath day. Others said, How can a man that is a sinner do such miracles? And there was a division among them.

Joh 9:17-18  They say unto the blind man again, What sayest thou of him, that he hath opened thine eyes? He said, He is a prophet.      But the Jews did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind, and received his sight, until they called the parents of him that had received his sight.

Joh 9:19-20  And they asked them, saying, Is this your son, who ye say was born blind? How then doth he now see?      His parents answered them and said, We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind:

Joh 9:21  But by what means he now seeth, we know not; or who hath opened his eyes, we know not: he is of age; ask him: he shall speak for himself.

Joh 9:22  These words spake his parents, because they feared the Jews: for the Jews had agreed already, that if any man did confess that he was Christ, he should be put out of the synagogue.

Joh 9:23  Therefore said his parents, He is of age; ask him.

Let us stop here. This is enough to fill three sermons. Did you notice that this man does not have a name? Now, whenever in the Bible you see a person who does not have a name, be on the lookout for that person to represent a large group of people. For example, this blind beggar does not have a name because he is a type or a picture of any person who becomes saved. The cure for his blindness is a picture of salvation. Like I have already said last week: This man is a picture of every elect sinner whom God saves. #1. Jesus found this man outside the temple, indicating that every elect sinner, in his natural condition, is alienated from God and from the commonwealth of the Body of Christ, the church. #2. This man was blind, and therefore he could not see the Savior when He approached him. When we were spiritually blind, we could not see the Savior doing His mighty work for us and in us. #3. This man has been blind from birth, indicating that we too were spiritually blind from birth and enemies of God. Do you want proof? God says in Psalm 58:3, “The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies”. God tells us to look at our dear innocent babies with different eyes. They too are sinners who need salvation like every one else. #4. Since this man was blind from birth he was beyond the help of man: His was a helpless and hopeless case. Only God could do something about it. #5. This blind man was a beggar, which means that he was unable to purchase anything that could help him out of his deplorable condition. He was completely dependent on unconditional free gifts. We too are beggars in the sight of God. We have nothing that we can offer to God. All our works are tainted with sin. Our only hope is an unconditional free gift from God. #6. This blind man did not utter a cry for healing from his blindness. Jesus healed him from his blindness without him pleading for mercy. At least he realized that he was blind. And so it is with us. We did not even know we were blind, or we were too proud to admit that we were blind, or we gave up when we realized that we were too dumb to understand the Bible. #7. Moreover, no human being pitied this blind man in his wretched condition. Listen to the reasoning of the disciples. They only philosophized about his blindness without really trying to comfort him. And so it is with us. The sad fact is that we cannot expect any comfort from man’s wisdom, or from man’s reasoning, or form man’s philosophizing about the condition of our soul. Our hope is not in man, but in God. Only God can make us realize that we are spiritually blind, and that Christ can make us see. Let us look at:

#1.       A Man That Is Called Jesus (John 9:11, Col 2:9, Rev 19:13, John 1:1-3)

Let us first focus on the Person who is called Jesus and let us read verse 11 again.

Joh 9:11  He answered and said, A man that is called Jesus made clay, and anointed mine eyes, and said unto me, Go to the pool of Siloam, and wash: and I went and washed, and I received sight.

The formerly blind man did not philosophize or speculate. His answer was simple and honest. He did not have much light yet, but what he witnessed was faithful and true to the light that Jesus had given him. And this is also the way we must witness. We must give a straightforward account of who Jesus is and what He has done for us. This man spoke of Jesus as a man. And was this not also the way the Gospel first grabbed us? Jesus in His humanity spoke to us in love and in lowliness and in humility. But we did not understand at first what His love and lowliness and humility stood for until we studied the Bible. Then we understood that this Jesus was the Son of God. But this is still not enough, because the Mormons and the Jehovah’s Witnesses also speak of Jesus as the Son of God, and yet they believe in another god than the God whom we read about in the Bible. And when we study the Scriptures and grow in the knowledge of the Lord we discover that the man Christ Jesus is none other than God Himself. Please don’t misunderstand me: I am not saying that Jesus became God, but God the Son, the 2nd Person of the triune God, came to earth and took up residence in the body that was born through the Virgin Mary. The Bible teaches that God consists of three distinct Persons in One: God the Father is not God the Son, and God the Son is not God the Holy Spirit, and God the Holy Spirit is not God the Father, and yet the Bible says that there is only One God. Which means that the Father is fully God, and the Son is fully God, and the Holy Spirit is fully God. For example, we read in Col 2:9, “For in him (in Christ) dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily”. The Lord Jesus Christ is spoken of as the Son of God but more precisely He is God the Son, the 2nd Person of the triune Godhead who is also God Himself. When the Roman soldiers nailed Jesus to the cross, they nailed God to that cross, because the Lord Jesus Christ never ceased to be God. How can we understand this? We cannot understand it, but we can believe it, and we are commanded to believe it. Therefore we must believe the whole Bible, from cover to cover, since all the words of the Bible together give us a precise description of the God we are serving. If we leave any word out of the Bible, or we add a word to the Bible, we have carved for ourselves a man made image of a god, but he is no longer the God of the Bible. That is why the Lord Jesus Christ is also called, “The Word of God”. God says in Rev 19:13, “And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and His name is called The Word of God”. This is what we must have in mind when we read John 1:1. Put a sticker here in John chapter 9:11 and please turn about 20 pages to your left (à) to John 1:1 (2X). The Lord Jesus Christ, who is named “The Word of God”, is also named “The Word” here in John 1:1. Here in the opening verses of the Gospel according to John we are immediately confronted with the Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Joh 1:1 ¶ In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Joh 1:2  The same was in the beginning with God.

Joh 1:3  All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

Christ is called “The Word”. God the Son, or Christ, existed from eternity past. He was with God, as one of the three Persons, and He was fully God at the same time. We understand that God the Father created all things. But verse 3 says that God the Son, or Christ, made all things. This is so because He is fully God, like the Father is fully God. And so we see that the Lord Jesus Christ was fully man, but at the same time He is fully God. In order for Him to be our Redeemer He had to be a man so that He could take the guilt of our sins upon Him. But if He only were a good man who never sinned He would have been consumed in the process of enduring the penalty of the wrath of God in our place on account of our sins. Therefore He also had to be God, in order to be able to endure the penalty of the equivalent of an eternity in Hell and come out the other end of Hell. And we know that He was victorious over all His sufferings, because He bodily rose from the grave two days later. Therefore we believe that the Lord Jesus Christ fully satisfied the wrath of God, because He rose from the grave. But not only was the Lord Jesus fully God and fully man, but also:

Please turn again to John 9. We read in John 9:17,

Joh 9:17  They say unto the blind man again, What sayest thou of him, that he hath opened thine eyes? He said, He is a prophet.

What was so important about it that He was a prophet? What is a prophet? A prophet is a mouthpiece of God. A prophet brings the messages from God to the people. A priest, on the other hand, brings the petitions from the people to God. The Lord Jesus brought the Gospel of salvation from God to the people. He was definitely a prophet. As you can see, there was a definite progress in the mind of the formerly blind beggar. When he talked with his neighbors he referred to Christ as, “A man that is called Jesus”. But now, before the Pharisees, he proclaimed Jesus as one whose word is Divine, as coming from God. This was not the only time that Jesus was called a prophet. Keep a sticker here in John 9, and please turn to John 4:19 (2X). In this chapter of the Gospel of John the Lord Jesus is talking to a Samaritan woman. Jesus asked the woman to bring her husband. She said I have no husband. Then Jesus said to her, “You have well said, I have no husband, for you have had five husbands, and the one you now live with is not your husband”. Then we read in John 4:19,

Joh 4:19  The woman saith unto him, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet.

The woman recognized that Jesus’ knowledge of her was of divine origin. She believed He was a holy man, like a prophet. Please turn now to chapter 6:14 (2X). Jesus had fed 5000 men with 5 barley loaves and two fishes. That was a stupendous miracle, and they all saw it with their own eyes.

Joh 6:14  Then those men, when they had seen the miracle that Jesus did, said, This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world.

What were they referring to when they said, “That Prophet”? They were referring to the prophecy God gave to Moses in Deut 18:18. Let me read to you what God said in Deut 18:18,

De 18:18  I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him.

This was a prophecy referring to the Lord Jesus Christ. God called Christ a Prophet, because He was going to declare the Gospel to the nation of Israel, whom He appointed to proclaim that Gospel to the entire world. This assignment to the Jews to evangelize the world is not a future event reserved for the Millennium. They received this assignment about 2000 years ago, beginning at Pentecost, in the year AD 33. This is another reason why the 1000 year Millennium is a figment of someone’s imagination. Let us turn now to John 7:40 (2X). The Lord Jesus was in Jerusalem at the Feast of Tabernacles about 6 months before He was crucified. From about the midst of the feast until the end of the feast, i.e. 3½ days, the Lord Jesus taught in the temple; and at the end of the feast we read:

Joh 7:40  Many of the people therefore, when they heard this saying, said, Of a truth this is the Prophet.

Again they were referring to Deut 18:18. Jesus was referred to as The great Prophet that Moses was pointing to. Today, in many religions such as in Judaism and in the Moslem religion, Jesus is considered as just another man, but a prophet. It means that they do not have a Savior, a Redeemer, who paid for all their sins. If their Jesus is only a man, and not God, then they have no one who can take their place to endure the penalty for their sins. Put a sticker here in John 9 and please turn about 160 pages to your right (ß) to the Epistle to the Ephesians 2:4 (2X). Is it not amazing that God gave us such a Savior? Is it not wonderful that God revealed to us that Jesus paid for all our sins, and He paid it successfully? When we know that God had mercy on us we can really say that it is:

#2.       A Miracle of Mercy (Eph 2:4-5, 1:4-5, John 9:11, 2Cor 1:21)

When God uses the word mercy, we know it means that God is withholding something from us that we do deserve. When God withholds the penalty of Hell from us, that is great mercy. We read in Eph 2:4-5, “But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins”. How great is the mercy of God? He forgave each one of us at least a million sins. So great is the depravity of the human soul. The Bible paints mankind as a vile, wretched, and rebellious bunch of vipers. We were utterly defiant of God, and without knowing it we were totally on the side of Satan, and we were enslaved to Satan and to our own sins, which we liked so much. Did God know us this way before the foundation of the world? Absolutely Yes! God had mercy on us even when we were dead in sins. Did God know that Adam and Eve were going to sin? Absolutely Yes! And yet, God proceeded to create Adam and Eve, and God created Lucifer who became Satan, and God set the stage so that Adam and Eve could be tempted into sin. And the rest is history. God was not the Author of their sin, just like God is not the Author of all the other sins of mankind. Why did God do this? Could God not have built a beautiful temple for Himself from millions of angels who never sinned? Could God not have reaped an enormous amount of glory that way? Absolutely Yes! But that was not the route that God chose to give Himself glory. Instead God chose to work with man, who has defiled himself and degraded himself to the vilest and most satanic beings on this earth. Just think about it. Which four-legged animal will kill its own offspring? But mankind invented medically clean abortions. At the rate of 2 million abortions per year, and that only in the United States, babies are killed for the sake of convenience. Just for the sake of convenience! We know of no four-legged animal that will commit mass murder on such grand scale. This is the clay that God worked with, and God decided to build for Himself a beautiful temple from this kind of material. We read this, for example in Eph 1:4-5. Please turn 2 pages to your left (à) to Eph 1:4-5, where God says, “According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love, Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will”. You see, the sin of Adam and Eve did not catch God by surprise. Long before the foundation of the world God chose a Remnant of mankind and predestinated them to become “sons of God”. God chose vile and wretched blind “beggars on the dunghill, to set them among princes, and to make them inherit the throne of glory”. This is the route that God chose to glorify Himself. Instead of choosing “twelve legions of angels”, He chose twelve tribes of Israel. And this expression, “twelve tribes of Israel” does not refer to blood descendants of Jacob, because God says in John 1:13, “Which were born, not of blood” meaning: not on the coattails of your forefathers. This expression, “twelve tribes of Israel” refers to the “Remnant chosen by grace” out of all the nations and tribes and peoples and tongues of this world. And God gave them faith. This is how we can know if we belong to this Remnant. God gave us this faith when He renewed our soul. God did that when He made us “Born Again”. If we want to go to Him it is absolutely necessary that, “Ye must be born again”. This Remnant, His elect, God loved from everlasting past. And God decided to bestow His mercy on them by sending the Lord Jesus Christ to this earth, who then willingly took on Himself the guilt of all the sins of all His elect, and paid the full price on behalf of all His elect, to satisfy the righteousness of God upon our sins. What an incredible love for us, who are just creatures. He did not have to do this. What an incredible mercy. God is withholding the penalty of Hell from us because Christ already paid that penalty in our place. This is the reason why God made us “Born Again”. This is the reason: Christ has paid for our sins, therefore we are saved. And think about this: God could have passed us by when He chose His elect before the foundation of the world. Does this not make you tremble? Let us now turn again to John 9:11 (2X) and see the love of God and the mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ in action when He healed this blind man. Now we want to focus on the Work of “the man that is called Jesus”. We read in John 9:11,

Joh 9:11  He answered and said, A man that is called Jesus made clay, and anointed mine eyes, and said unto me, Go to the pool of Siloam, and wash: and I went and washed, and I received sight.

And while the Lord Jesus made clay from dust of the ground and spittle, He meditated on the many sins this blind man had accumulated and would continue to commit from that day forward. In fact, the guilt of all his sins were already imputed on Jesus, because Jesus knew that this was one of His elect whom Jesus had to rescue from his slippery slide into Hell. Jesus had compassion on the blind man because he could not help himself. Jesus “loved him with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness has He drawn this man” to this place in front of the temple to meet His Savior. Jesus made clay to symbolize the wretchedness and accursedness of this man’s soul. The righteousness of God demanded that this man’s soul was under the wrath of God, because he was still unsaved. And then Jesus anointed the eyes of this man with the filthy clay. Why did God use the word “anointed”? The Greek word really means anointed. Could God have used the word “put” or some other word for this apparently filthy application? Yes He could. But God did not do that. God used the verb “to anoint” to indicate that something very holy is going on here. This person was one of God’s elect. God says in 2Cor 1:21, “Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God”. This is almost the same Greek word for “anointed” as in John 9:11. You see, at the moment of our salvation, each one of God’s elect are anointed as prophets, priests and kings. And indeed, Jesus anointed this man unto salvation, but he did not know it yet. Symbolically he had to wash the curse of sin from his eyes. The man did not do that personally; Jesus already did that for him when He anointed his eyes with clay and gave him a desire to obey Jesus’ command to wash. Just like the symbol of water-baptism does not wash away any sins, so the symbol of washing his eyes did not really wash away the curse of sin from his eyes. This was done by a washing, or baptism, that Jesus must perform by suffering for his sins on the cross, the equivalent of an eternity in Hell. And what was the result of that washing that Jesus did? The result was that the beggar was:

#3.            Identified With Him (John 9:11, Rom 8:7, Luke 12:8, John 9:16-17)

The neighbors and they which had seen him begging, asked him, “How were thine eyes opened”?

Joh 9:11  He answered and said, A man that is called Jesus made clay, and anointed mine eyes, and said unto me, Go to the pool of Siloam, and wash: and I went and washed, and I received sight.

The name “Siloam” means “Sent”, which directly points to Christ as the One who has been sent by the Father into this world to atone for the sins of His elect, and to proclaim the Gospel. Therefore the pool of Siloam symbolically refers to the pool where Christ can be found, in the living waters of the pool. Jesus said to the beggar, “Go to the pool of Siloam, and wash”. Jesus also gave him the desire to obey, and this may be an indication that the beggar had already received a new mind at this point. If he were still in his natural fleshly mind, he would not have obeyed, for we read in Rom 8:7, “the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be”. The beggar identified Jesus as his Master, because he obeyed Him. Then, when his eyes were opened, which is pointing to the condition of his soul, then immediately his faith was tested. His neighbors asked him, and he gave them an honest and straightforward answer. We can see our own lives reflected in the story of this beggar. His faith is tested immediately and the test is gradually intensified. At first with a new believer God will not permit that unfriendliness take on a very aggressive form. God deals very tenderly with little children in His family. But as they grow in grace God allows them to be tested more severely. But tests must come, since this is how our faith is strengthened, and this is how we will cast our burdens upon the Lord, and this is how He perfects our weakness in His strength. And so, when the neighbors asked him, he witnessed what Jesus had done for him. The Lord Jesus said in Lu 12:8, Also I say unto you, Whosoever shall confess me before men, him shall the Son of man also confess before the angels of God”. And how do you witness? You tell them what great things God has done for you. That is being a witness, and that is the first duty of a newly saved soul. Of course, this is the last thing the world wants to hear. You can see this in the question the neighbors asked and the question the Pharisees asked. They did not ask, “Who opened your eyes”? But they asked, “How were your eyes opened”? So, then they brought this formerly blind beggar to the Pharisees. They had seen him many times before, sitting at the entrance to the temple. But they spent no thought on him, whose condition they regarded as an evidence that he was born in sin. But a beggar who was no longer blind, and especially a beggar who had received his sight from Jesus, was quite a different matter. Now their efforts were directed to discredit the miracle as something that could not be from God; it must come from Satan.  And so they questioned the beggar, and questioned him more, and they questioned his parents, all the while trying to find any inconsistencies through which they could discredit the miracle altogether. But the more they questioned the beggar the more his faith grew, and the more he defended the name of Jesus. He more and more identified himself with Jesus. We read in Joh 9:16, “Therefore said some of the Pharisees, This man is not of God, because he keepeth not the Sabbath day”. Is it not remarkable that Jesus performed so many healings on the Sabbath day? It seems as if He particularly sought out the Sabbath day to heal people. This is true. Jesus indicated thereby that after His resurrection the Sunday Sabbath is a day wherein we must work to bring the Gospel into the world, so that perhaps some might hear and be saved, and be healed of their spiritual infirmities. In addition, our Lord knew full well that healing on the Sabbath would give offense to His enemies. He did it anyway, because he did not want to support the commandments of men. Jesus left us a perfect example: On the Sunday Sabbath we must minister in mercy to those in need, and we must not be brought into bondage by rules and regulations, which have no support from the Scriptures. The beggar no longer feared the Pharisees. He could hear that they were not sincere. He could hear that there was a division among them. He could hear their hatred for Jesus in the words of those who are called in this Gospel, “The Jews”. The Jews “had agreed already, that if any man did confess that Jesus was the Christ, he should be put out of the synagogue”. He would be excommunicated! Thus they had deliberately closed their eyes against the truth, and therefore it was impossible for them to become saved, and they hindered others from being saved. Who dared to stand up against them? This beggar was the only one who had that courage. His parents did not fare so well. His parents feared the Jews. They did not dare to take a stand, even though they knew that Jesus had healed the blindness of their son. A wonderful miracle had been performed, but the Jews were determined not to believe it. And that is how history is repeated today. The ones who will treat young coverts the worst, are not atheists or governments, but those who are loudest in their religious professions. These Pharisees have many followers. Their tribe is far from being extinct, and their descendants will occupy the same positions of religious leadership, as did their fathers of old. But the beggar stood firm. He identified himself with Jesus, and Jesus identified Himself with him. In this we see that Christ will never leave us, nor forsake us. He will always give us courage and grace to overcome.

AMEN.                 Let us turn to the Lord in prayer.