Summary: This is the fifth in this series based on Luke 4:16-21 and using Luke 18:18-23 as the main text.
THE UNEXPECTED JESUS
"Recovery of Sight to the Blind"
INTRODUCTION: In my opinion, the best part of the newspaper is the comic section. I often find
the truth about our society in the humor meant for children and then I can understand it. In one
such comic strip, Andy Capp, I found this series of events. Andy and a friend are hard at work
shooting a game of pool, when his friend leaves in the middle of the game. Andy can’t believe
it, and as the friend drives off in his new car Andy hollers at him to get his priorities
straight. (Seems that snooker is high priority to Andy Capp.) In the last frame, Andy makes a
very insightful comment. He says, "Some people work day and night so they drive between jobs in
a nicer car." That’s a good point! Sometimes people work so hard trying to get ahead that they
are behind when they arrive. They spent a lot of time climbing the ladder of success; only to
spend enormous amounts of energy just to hang on once they get there. And the worst part is that
they cannot let go. Their possessions are too grand. Their social position too gratifying and
their pride too great. Jesus met a man who fit this description to a tee; a man who was truly
blinded by his life. READ TEXT Our Lord had the gift of restoring sight to the blind, and not
just those who were blind of sight, but also those who were blind of heart. With the Rich Young
Ruler, Jesus faced a unique challenge of opening the eyes of one who could not see past his own
I. BLINDED BY SUCCESS
A. At first glance this guy seems to have everything going his way. He is wealthy - no worries
financially. He is young - life is still full of vigor. He is in a position of authority - a
mover and a shaker. What else could a man want?
1. Even in religious matters he was on the straight and narrow. In response to his first question
Jesus listed some of the commandments and they had been kept. This wealthy young magistrate
checked them off one by one as they had been obeyed in his life. But something was missing.
2. Yes, he had come to Jesus on his own - at least as far as we can tell. He was not seeking to
lay a trap or ridicule the Savior, but I believe he was seeking something Jesus would not give
him. He was looking for an official seal of approval on his life.
3. He was a 1st Century yuppie with wealth, health and power, and the right amount of religion
mixed in. He thought he had attained. He had all the right answers, all the right moves, all
the right connections. The only thing he lacked as a nod from Jesus and he would be set.
4. No longer would he be the Rich Young Ruler, rather he would be the Right Rich Young Ruler. God
approved, Divinely sealed and headed for destiny. He would have everything he needed and no one
could ever question his importance or his authority again.
B. Boy, oh, boy, that sounds all to familiar doesn’t it? How many times do we go to God with our
little list of good deeds and our program of obedience looking for His seal of approval. We have
all the right answers, all the right connections, the right position in society and belong to
the right circle in religious matters. But in reality, we like him, lack one vital piece of the
C. In Matthew 13:14,15 Jesus said, "I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see
and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand. And in them the prophecy of Isaiah is
fulfilled which says: ’Hearing you will hear and shall not understand, and seeing you will see
and not perceive.’" Fits our Rich Young Ruler like a glove doesn’t it.
II. RESTORATION OF SIGHT
A. Can you imagine the shock he felt when Jesus answered his question, "What am I missing in my
life to live eternally?" Here is where we find the unexpected Jesus.
1. Our 1st Century Yuppie had been successful in business, spectacular in society and saintly in
religion. By most standards he as a great guy. What he expected was a pat on the back, even a little bit of praise, after all he had earned it.
2. Well, we would have given it too him wouldn’t we? Hey, be honest, that is exactly what we do.
We praise the popular, award the successful and exalt the super religious who have all the