The same man? (07-09-22)
Psalm of Praise: Psalms 37:7-9
Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when people succeed in their ways,
when they carry out their wicked schemes.
Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;
do not fret, it leads only to evil.
For those who are evil will be destroyed,
but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land.
Bible Reading: John 9:6-9
Jesus spat on the ground, made some mud with the saliva, and put it on the man's eyes.
"Go," he told him, "wash in the Pool of Siloam".
So the man went and washed, and came home seeing.
His neighbours and those who had formerly seen him begging asked,
"Isn't this the same man who used to sit and beg?"
Some claimed that he was. Others said, "No, he only looks like him."
But he himself insisted, "I am the man."
I’m not a great fan of alternative medicine. I believe in having a healthy lifestyle of food and exercise, I’m very grateful for the NHS and of new medical initiatives, but when it comes to alternative medicine I tend to give it a wide berth. I would probably therefore have struggled with Jesus remedy for this man’s blindness!
I’m not sure that it was either Jesus’ spit or the Judean mud that restored the man’s site however, nor do I think it was the water in the Pool of Siloam. I think it was the man’s faith in Jesus, as shown by his obedience to go and wash in the pool, that restored his sight.
The life of faith is not always rational by this world’s standards. Forgiveness is not natural, nor is generosity or self-sacrifice or self-discipline. But let us not miss out on the blessings of faith by following the rationales of the world.
When the blind man was healed his life changed. Maybe his confidence in walking or his level of activity that made him appear different, either way some people did not believe it was the same person, only that he looked like him. In the end the man had to say for himself, ‘I am the man.’
When we find faith in Jesus we may well stay the same on the outside, but God's Holy Spirit changes us from the inside so that we become more like Jesus. I wonder in what ways your faith in Jesus has changed your life. In what ways are you different now to how you would have been if you were not a Christian? Can you give thanks to God for these changes?
In what ways might God still need to change you to become more like Jesus? Will you allow the Holy Spirit to continue his work of sanctification in your life?
Thank you Lord Jesus that your Holy Spirit is at work in my life.
Give me the faith to follow you even when it may not seem logical to others and the grace to become more like you, day by day.
O Lord, your tenderness