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Matthew Henry's Commentary

John Chapter 9 

hrist give sight to one born blind. (1-7) The account given by the blind man. (8-12) The Pharisees question the man that had been blind. (13-17) They ask concerning him. (18-23) They cast him out. (24-34) Christ's words to the man that had been blind. (35-38) He reproves the Pharisees. (39-41)

Verses 1-7: Christ cured many who were blind by disease or accident; here he cured one born blind. Thus he showed his power to help in the most desperate cases, and the work of his grace upon the souls of sinners, which gives sight to those blind by nature. This poor man could not see Christ, but Christ saw him. And if we know or apprehend anything of Christ, it is because we were first known of him. Christ says of uncommon calamities, that they are not always to be looked on as special punishments of sin; sometimes they are for the glory of God, and to manifest his works. Our life is our day, in which it concerns us to do the work of the day. We must be busy, and not waste day-time; it will be time to rest when our day is done, for it is but a day. The approach of death should quicken us to improve all our opportunities of doing and getting good. What good we have an opportunity to do, we should do quickly. And he that will never do a good work till there is nothing to be objected against, will leave many a good work for ever undone, (Ec 11:4). Christ magnified his power, in making a blind man to see, doing that which one would think more likely to make a seeing man blind. Human reason cannot judge of the Lord's methods; he uses means and instruments that men despise. Those that would be healed by Christ must be ruled by him. He came back from the pool wondering and wondered at; he came seeing. This represents the benefits in attending on ordinances of Christ's appointment; souls go weak, and come away strengthened; go doubting, and come away satisfied; go mourning, and come away rejoicing; go blind, and come away seeing.

Verses 8-12: Those whose eyes are opened, and whose hearts are cleansed by grace, being known to be the same person, but widely different in character, live as monuments to the Redeemer's glory, and recommend his grace to all who desire the same precious salvation. It is good to observe the way and method of God's works, and they will appear the more wonderful. Apply this spiritually. In the work of grace wrought upon the soul we see the change, but we see not the hand that makes it: the way of the Spirit is like that of the wind, which thou hearest the sound of, but canst not tell whence it comes, nor whither it goes.

Verses 13-17: Christ not only worked miracles on the sabbath, but in such a manner as would give offence to the Jews, for he would not seem to yield to the scribes and Pharisees. Their zeal for mere rites consumed the substantial matters of religion; therefore Christ would not give place to them. Also, works of necessity and mercy are allowed, and the sabbath rest is to be kept, in order to the sabbath work. How many blind eyes have been opened by the preaching of the gospel on the Lord's day! how many impotent souls cured on that day! Much unrighteous and uncharitable judging comes from men's adding their own fancies to God's appointments. How perfect in wisdom and holiness was our Redeemer, when his enemies could find nothing against him, but the oft-refuted charge of breaking the sabbath! May we be enabled, by well-doing, to silence the ignorance of foolish men.

Verses 18-23: The Pharisees vainly hoped to disprove this notable miracle. They expected a Messiah, but could not bear to think that this Jesus should be he, because his precepts were all contrary to their traditions, and because they expected a Messiah in outward pomp and splendour. The fear of man brings a snare, (Pr 29:25), and often makes people deny and disown Christ and his truths and ways, and act against their consciences. The unlearned and poor, who are simple-hearted, readily draw proper inferences from the evidences of the light of the gospel; but those whose desires are another way, though ever learning, never come to the knowledge of the truth.

Verses 24-34: As Christ's mercies are most valued by those who have felt the want of them, that have been blind, and now see; so the most powerful and lasting affections to Christ, arise from actual knowledge of him. In the work of grace in the soul, though we cannot tell when, and how, and by what steps the blessed change was wrought, yet we may take the comfort, if we can say, through grace, Whereas I was blind, now I see. I did live a worldly, sensual life, but, thanks be to God, it is now otherwise with me, (Eph 5:8). The unbelief of those who enjoy the means of knowledge and conviction, is indeed marvellous. All who have felt the power and grace of the Lord Jesus, wonder at the wilfulness of others who reject him. He argues strongly against them, not only that Jesus was not a sinner, but that he was of God. We may each of us know by this, whether we are of God or not. What do we? What do we for God? What do we for our souls? What do we more than others?

Verses 35-38: Christ owns those who own him and his truth and ways. There is particular notice taken of such a suffer in the cause of Christ, and for the testimony of a good conscience. Our Lord Jesus graciously reveals himself to the man. Now he was made sensible what an unspeakable mercy it was, to be cured of his blindness, that he might see the Son of God. None but God is to be worshipped; so that in worshipping Jesus, he owned him to be God. All who believe in him, will worship him.

Verses 39-41: Christ came into the world to give sight to those who were spiritually blind. Also, that those who see might be made blind; that those who have a high conceit of their own wisdom, might be sealed up in ignorance. The preaching of the cross was thought to be folly by such as by carnal wisdom knew not God. Nothing fortifies men's corrupt hearts against the convictions of the word, more than the high opinion which others have of them; as if all that gained applause with men, must obtain acceptance with God. Christ silenced them. But the sin of the self-conceited and self-confident remains; they reject the gospel of grace, therefore the guilt of their sin remains unpardoned, and the power of their sin remains unbroken.

 

 


David Burnette's Life Application

How is Your Sight?

Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter making an application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today we continue in the book of John with Chapter 9. In our text today we see Jesus healing a man that was born blind, Religious leaders question the blind man, and Jesus teaching about Spiritual blindness. In making application we see the parity of sight and blindness as it relates to spiritual sight and spiritual blindness. Today we are either blind or have sight and if we are born again we see the illustration of the truth of the scriptures. The good news is that if we are spiritually blind we can receive sight just as the blind man in our text. How about you? Do you have Spiritual sight? Let us learn from our text today and the illustration of Jesus to see that there is spiritual blindness and if we get saved or born again our eyes will be open and we will be able to receive our spiritual sight to see the things of our Lord-Jesus.

 

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John 9 

John 9

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

 2And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind?

 3Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.

 4I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.

 5As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.

 6When 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,

 7And 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.

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

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

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

 11He 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.

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

 13They brought to the Pharisees him that aforetime was blind.

 14And it was the sabbath day when Jesus made the clay, and opened his eyes.

 15Then 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.

 16Therefore 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.

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

 18But 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.

 19And they asked them, saying, Is this your son, who ye say was born blind? how then doth he now see?

 20His parents answered them and said, We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind:

 21But 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.

 22These 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.

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

 24Then again called they the man that was blind, and said unto him, Give God the praise: we know that this man is a sinner.

 25He answered and said, Whether he be a sinner or no, I know not: one thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see.

 26Then said they to him again, What did he to thee? how opened he thine eyes?

 27He answered them, I have told you already, and ye did not hear: wherefore would ye hear it again? will ye also be his disciples?

 28Then they reviled him, and said, Thou art his disciple; but we are Moses' disciples.

 29We know that God spake unto Moses: as for this fellow, we know not from whence he is.

 30The man answered and said unto them, Why herein is a marvellous thing, that ye know not from whence he is, and yet he hath opened mine eyes.

 31Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth his will, him he heareth.

 32Since the world began was it not heard that any man opened the eyes of one that was born blind.

 33If this man were not of God, he could do nothing.

 34They answered and said unto him, Thou wast altogether born in sins, and dost thou teach us? And they cast him out.

 35Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and when he had found him, he said unto him, Dost thou believe on the Son of God?

 36He answered and said, Who is he, Lord, that I might believe on him?

 37And Jesus said unto him, Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that talketh with thee.

 38And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him.

 39And Jesus said, For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not might see; and that they which see might be made blind.

 40And some of the Pharisees which were with him heard these words, and said unto him, Are we blind also?

 41Jesus said unto them, If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth.