Saturday 02 August 2014

Bible Book:

“‘Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then does he now see?’ His parents answered, ‘We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind; but we do not know how it is that now he sees, nor do we know who opened his eyes. Ask him; he is of age. He will speak for himself.’” (vv. 19-21)

John 9:13-23 Saturday 2 August 2014


This passage reads as another case of mistaken identity.

The healed man is unable to answer questions about Jesus becausehe could not identify Jesus - his testimony although plain to see -was limited by his marginalisation from society. It is only afterthe event of his healing that he is noticed, and years of beingignored mean that he is less than articulate responding toarticulate rheoriticians.

The man's family, afraid for their own safety and securityrefuse to leave the comfort of their own apathy, and instead forcetheir son to defend himself rather than to enter into the debate.They were only too aware of either sounding outlandish, or sayingsomething that would offend the religious leaders.

The healed man is disbelieved by the religious authorities whofound it easier to think that this was a prank, rather than amiracle.

Jesus is described as a sinner (verse 16), rather than offeringhealing out of innate goodness. The authorities were desperate toprove that Jesus was anything other than who he said he was - notleast of all because the miracle took place on the Sabbath - a holyday (verses 14, 16).

Yet, in the midst of the confusion, fear, anxiety, joy andanger, there is also an invitation to pay closer attention. Tonotice, as the blind man had, God in the midst of life's trials andtraumas - and to be obedient.

... Pay attention to the detail of a situation rather than thenoise of a situation. Pay attention to the spiritual undertones ofa situation and taking the invitation to participate in God'snarrative. Take time to walk, to smell, to read, to look, to taste,to listen, to recognise patterns and detail, to be slower, tobreathe, to look up and to linger.

The challenge of this passage is not to be distracted by theopportunities of mistaken identities, broken promises or red tapedrules - but to take Jesus' statement seriously. To recognise thelight of Christ refracted around the world in which we live; and tobe transformed by the kaleidoscopic lenses of grace, healing, hopeand promise.

To Ponder

  • How might you intentionally pay more attention to yoursurroundings today?
  • Where do you notice God at work on the edges of society and ourlocal community?
  • To what do you need to be obedient, today?

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