Summary: In John chapter nine, Jesus gives a visible illustration of what He meant when He said, "I am the Light of the World."
Seeing Is Believing
Text: John 9: 24-38
Intro: “Seeing is believing” are words all of us have heard numerous times. They are usually spoken concerning something that seems too fantastic to accept, unless one personally witnesses it. In this sense, these words are an affirmation of something’s validity.
However, sometimes these words are spoken with a bit of skepticism. In other words, one takes the position of refusing to believe what he or she can’t physically see. And this is often the philosophy of many in the world today concerning God. Their belief hinges on sight. They tend to see God and the Bible merely as crutches, used by society to survive the difficulties of life, not realities.
Man’s viewpoint and God’s are just the opposite. Man says, “If I can see, I’ll believe.” God says, “If you will believe, you will be able to see.” In God’s economy, belief always precedes sight.
The ninth chapter of the gospel according to John is not only an account of a blind man’s healing by Jesus, but it is also an illustration of salvation. As a matter of fact, this chapter logically follows Christ’s discussion in chapter eight concerning spiritual darkness. As was so often the case, Jesus, in chapter nine gives a physical illustration to drive home the meaning of what He had been teaching the people. He was also illustrating that He was the personification of spiritual light, so desperately needed by the world.
Theme: In this passage we observe:
I. AN EXAMPLE OF SALVATION
A. This Miracle Would Explain Christ’s Pronouncement.
1. Jesus had claimed to be the “Light of the World.”
John 8: 12 “Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.”
NOTE: A person living in spiritual darkness can make some foolish, if not fatal choices in their life. It’s strange how folks seem to think that God and salvation are so unimportant, and then wonder why their life has become such a mess. But look what this kind of thinking gets them.
Making decisions in the dark can lead to some regrettable consequences. Back in the days before electricity, a tightfisted old farmer was taking his hired man to task for carrying a lighted lantern when he went to call on his best girl.
“Why,” he exclaimed, “when I went a-courtin’ I never carried one of them things. I always went in the dark.”
“Yes,” the hired man said wryly, “and look what you got!”
2. Jesus’ claim had validity, according to Matthew, who quoted Isaiah’s prophecy concerning the coming Messiah.
Matt.4: 16 “The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up.”
3. As the “Light of the World,” Jesus opened blinded eyes, just as was prophesied about Messiah.
Isa.29: 18 “And in that day shall the deaf hear the words of the book, and the eyes of the blind shall see out of obscurity, and out of darkness.”
Isa.35: 5 “Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped.”
Isa.42: 6 “I the Lord have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles;
7 To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house.”
B. This Miracle Would Expose God’s Power.
John 9: 1 “And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth.
2 And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind?
3 Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents; but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.
4 I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.”
NOTE:  The disciples had the mistaken idea that tragedy like this man’s blindness was the result of judgment for sin. In one sense, all tragedies are the outgrowth of Adam and Eve’s sin in the garden. They lived in a perfect world until their fall. But just because someone experiences a tragedy or physical malady doesn’t mean that that individual or their parents committed some grave sin.
 Jesus said this situation was permitted to reveal the power of God through this man’s life. Blaise Pascal once said, “The greatest single distinguishing feature of the omnipotence of God is that our imagination gets lost when thinking about it” (Blaise Pascal, Pensees). Perhaps the trials that we complain so much about have a greater purpose than we realize.