I Love it When a Plan Comes Together

27 04 2013

Another thing concerning this episode in the 9th Chapter of John, in which Jesus healed the blind man, was the way He went about it. According to Scripture, Jesus spit on the ground and made mud with the saliva. He then spread the mud onto the eyes of the blind man and told him to go to the Pool of Siloam and wash his eyes. After this, the man was able to see.

Now, here is what I find interesting about this particular passage. Why did Jesus make mud with His spit and put it on the guy’s eyes? There was absolutely nothing Jesus was not capable of doing. He didn’t need to put a mud pie on this man’s eyes to provide him with sight. All Jesus had to do was speak it and miracles would happen.

Flip over a couple of chapters to Chapter 11 in which Jesus raises Lazarus from death. The man had been dead for four days. If Jesus had to put mud on the eyes of the blind man in order to give him sight, then it would follow that He would need to take Lazarus’ dead body down to the river and give him a mud bath. Instead, after having the stone moved away from the front of the tomb where Lazarus lay dead, Jesus simply yelled at Lazarus to come out… and he did.

So why did Jesus make the mud and put it on the blind man’s eyes? I believe there were at least three reasons; not the least of which was to bait the Pharisees.

In addition to the laws handed down by Moses, the Pharisees and other religious leaders had added their own laws and a number of strict interpretations. One strict law was that you did not violate the Sabbath by doing work. The Pharisees interpreted just about anything, other than breathing, to be work. Remember, they made their own bricks using mud and straw, so in the eyes of the Pharisees, mixing spit and dirt to make mud was considered work.

Jesus knew this, and knowing, too, it was the Sabbath, He knew the Pharisees among those watching, would have a hissy fit. But He wasn’t simply trying to make them mad. One, He wanted to show others watching that these contrived laws were not of God. Two, He wanted to make a show of this event so those who witnessed it would remember it better and spread the story. And three, and most importantly, He wanted to provoke the Pharisees so they would eventually have Him arrested and murdered. This was necessary in order to carry out the plan of salvation. Without the cross, we could not have eternal life. Jesus had to make someone angry enough to want Him dead. This event just moved Him one step closer to the cross and the fulfillment of a 700 year old prophecy. God’s plan is infinitely brilliant.

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