This week we continue our series on the miracles of Jesus by looking at John chapter 9 at the healing of the blind man. Of the five senses in the human body, our sight may be the most important to us. I have read that in the U.S. someone goes blind every 20 minutes. What a sad statistic that is. In today’s miracle we see a man who was born blind, but when Jesus arrived on the scene, this blind man’s life drastically changed. We learn in John 9 that not only was he blind, but he was also a beggar. Every day he would sit and beg as people would pass right by him. But this day would be a different day. Not only would he see with his eyes, but he would also come to a clear spiritual view of Jesus.
The Bible tells us that this man had experienced only darkness since his birth. In response to the man’s condition, Jesus spits on the dusty ground and creates a small amount of mud with which he then applies to the eyes of the blind man. Next Jesus commands him to go to the pool of Siloam (Shiloh) and to wash the clay from his eyes. When the blind man washed the clay from his eyes, he could see (see John 9:1–7). In a short time Jesus brought him from complete darkness to light. Now I believe we can see multiple applications from this miracle. Among them is the power of Jesus over the physical body. The miracle likely necessitated the creation of cells, tissues, and nerves that were either present but had never functioned or were altogether absent due to birth defects.
I also believe it’s also significant that Jesus commanded the man to go to the pool of Siloam to wash the clay from his eyes. The word Siloam in Hebrew is rendered Shiloh and is one of the ancient titles of Jehovah (see Genesis 49:10). The word means “a messenger sent forth with authority.” In the end, the blind man was able to see only after he submitted his will to Jesus, the authorized messenger sent from the presence of God.
I believe we need to keep in mind that we are all in decline growing physically older and weaker by the moment. Of course, the process of mortality will end where Job proclaimed it would end—with worms destroying our flesh (see Job 19:25–26). These sobering facts call us to look at the account of the man born blind more carefully. If Jesus has power to re-create his useless eyes to make them whole, we must have faith that He has power to restore our physical bodies from conditions of decline and decay to conditions of wholeness in this life and the next. We can experience healing, but in the end we are still going to die. The good news is that Jesus offer us the ultimate healing of being restored in the afterlife for eternity! This Sunday at South Side we will unpack this miracle and how it applies to us today. We have classes for all ages of children as well as a nursery for infants. Be sure to come early and enjoy a fresh cup of coffee at “Café Connect.” Worship begins at 10:45, and we would love to have you worship with us!
Barry Pettit is lead minister at South Side Church of Christ in Washington Court House.