Backwards Verse of the Day #15: John 9:39-41
The state of unbelief in Christ is not a matter of whether or not one chooses to believe in Christ, but rather it is a much more profound condition. Throughout the Scriptures God calls this, in one form or another, “Spiritual Blindness.” The biggest problem with spiritual blindness is that those who are blind don’t know they are blind.
Here are a couple of examples.
1. Isaiah’s call to ministry in Isaiah 6 is to preach to people who “keep on seeing but do not perceive.”
2. When the ministry of the Messiah is summarized in Matthew 11, it includes this: “the blind receive their sight…”
3. Paul explains the power of the gospel by calling it a shining of the gospel’s light into spiritual darkness. God says “Let there be light!” to the spiritually blind person and “creates” light and sight in the unbeliever (2 Cor 4). This is the same as the creation account where God says “let there be light” into the dark void.
Conversion is a miracle of God restoring sight to those who are spiritually blind. If one thinks he can see, he cannot be healed because he does not recognize his own need.
This is what happened to the Pharisees in John 9.
Jesus said, “For judgment I came into this world, ?that those who do not see may see, and those who see may become blind.” Some of the Pharisees near him heard these things, and said to him, “Are we also blind?” Jesus said to them, “If you were blind, you would have no guilt; but now that you say, ‘We see,’ your guilt remains.
Since they refuse to acknowledge their blindness, they will never see. The blind man is a living parable to this fact. He knew he was blind, he called out to the one who could restore his sight, and his sight was restored.
This is exactly how it works in coming to faith in Christ. We acknowledge our own spiritual blindness, we call out to him who can restore our spiritual sight, God restores our sight. What we see when we first open our healed eyes is the beauty and wonder of the God who rescued us. Or in Paul’s words, we behold the “light of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Cor 4).