Summary: Timid Christians or those that don't speak up for Christ can learn from the boldness of the former blind man.
Jesus, the God Man: The Gospel of John
“Taking a Hit for Taking a Stand”
Introduction: “Keep your head down, but keep firing!” Many times we hear those words while watching a war movie. People instinctively seem to know that you never raise your head in the middle of a battle lest you get shot. Sometimes men cower in their foxholes and never even raise their head to fire a shot.
We have already met a couple like that as we studied this chapter last week. The blind man’s parents basically threw their son under the bus because of their fear of the Pharisees. They never even fired a shot on their son’s behalf.
Today, however we will see the blind man charge out of the foxhole into oncoming enemy fire and as a result he will gladly suffer the consequences on behalf of Jesus.
If you are a timid Christian or find yourself without a voice when it comes to speaking on Christ’s behalf then take a lesson from this former blind man as we see him “taking a hit for taking a stand.”
1. Don’t get pulled into arguments. (vv. 24-25)
At parents’ insistence the Pharisees recall the man to stand before them.
“Give God the glory!” Two meanings are meant for this phrase. It can be taken to mean swear an oath similar to our “Do you swear to tell the truth…so help you God?” Another possibility is that they are encouraging him not say anything good about Jesus, but instead give God the glory for his healing.
Oddly enough that is exactly what he has been trying to do, but they were not!
They were in essence saying, “You tell the truth, but we will tell you what we believe the truth is.” Witness tampering!
“We know” – Only the hard-hearted blind Pharisees agreed, but there are a few that don’t agree in v. 16b.
“this man” – Probably spit the word out. This is also their response to him calling Jesus a prophet. He’s just a man.
v. 25 – Wisely responds by sticking to what he knows. “I am not going to have a theological debate with you. I’ll stick with what I know. I know that once I was blind but now I see.”
“One thing” – SIMPLIFY! Your testimony does not need to be complex. He goes back to his very simple testimony which is shared by all of us that have met Jesus.
Do not get sidetracked in talking to unbelievers by unnecessary arguments and debate. Stick with what you know and have experienced.
You may not be an authority on theology, but you are the world’s greatest authority on what has happened to you! –R. Kent Hughes, John: That You May Believe
You can know that you are saved:
I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life. 1 John 5:13 (NIV)
The Pharisees wanted to debate the person of Christ while the blind man wanted to discuss the power of Christ!
2. Answer questions without backing down. (vv. 26-27)
Ask him the same question again perhaps hoping that he will contradict himself. They also may be concerned with the method or to discover where the power originated. But how is not as important as Who!
Faith is occupied not with the manner in which you held out your hand to receive God’s gift, but with Christ Himself! But unbelief is occupied with the "how" rather than with the "whom." –AW Pink (1886-1952), Exposition of the Gospel of John
v. 27 – But this man is not about to be bullied or trapped by their questions so he uses sarcasm to make a point.
“Why do I have to keep repeating myself? Do want to be His follower too?”
The use of the word “also” suggests that this man is already considering himself one of Jesus’ followers but again he is not yet a believer.
As followers of Jesus you and I must also answer questions that are raised by unbelievers but don’t back down on standing up for Jesus.
You have to admit it is a very amusing and witty reply. It is also VERY bold! He is playing with being unsynagogued here and yet he charges forward on Christ’s behalf. His parents are already so terrified of the Pharisees that they abandoned him to the interrogation and wrath of these religious leaders.
3. Boldly speak the truth without fear. (vv. 28-34)
“reviled” has a meaning of calling him names and speaking harshly to him. It means words that pierce or words that cut.
“His disciple” – Not yet, but soon (see v. 38).
They become arrogant and claim to be followers of Moses, but Jesus has already exposed this lie in 7:19.