Summary: As Jesus ministered to the blind man, He led Him to faith in Him. Spiritually the Lord leads us to the place where we realize our need and respond to Him by faith unto salvation.
The Blind Man at Bethsaida
Mark 8: 22-26
Today we find Jesus has returned to Bethsaida, a town near His home-base in Capernaum. He had been there following the feeding of the 5,000, and the stormy night when He walked on the water. During His previous visit, Jesus had healed many who were sick and afflicted throughout that area. As He returned, He again encounters a man in need of His touch.
Our text today reveals great spiritual truth. While everyone cannot identify with physical blindness, we can relate to the spiritual blindness all deal with prior to salvation. Through His encounter with the blind man we discover the process through which one receives spiritual sight in salvation. As we discuss the phases of this encounter, I want to preach on: The Blind Man at Bethsaida.
I. The Condition of the Man (22) – And he cometh to Bethsaida; and they bring a blind man unto him, and besought him to touch him. While Mark doesn’t offer much detail, we do find enough to discern the condition of this man. Consider:
A. His Infirmity – His name is not mentioned, but we do know the man suffered from physical blindness. He was unable to see, surely depending on others for his well-being. The text doesn’t reveal how long he had been in this condition, and it really doesn’t affect the outcome. Regardless of the time involved, the man was currently blind and unable to see.
Most are unwilling to admit it, but we all can identify with this man. In fact, we are all born with such an infirmity. Due to the fall of Adam and the curse of sin, all are born spiritually blind. We are unable to see the truths of the Gospel, being blinded by sin. We are unable to do anything about our condition, and must rely on others to help us. While men are unable to save, they can assist us by pointing us to the Lord and providing direction for those who walk in blindness.
B. The Intercession – We also find that this man was loved by those who knew him. He was not left alone to suffer through life. Some of his friends had heard that Jesus was in town and they brought the man to Jesus. They pleaded with the Lord to touch this man, desiring Jesus to heal him of his infirmity. Those who were able to see interceded for one who could not.
This is very simple and yet it amplifies a profound truth. Where would we be had someone not cared enough to share Jesus with us, interceding with the Lord regarding our salvation. I am forever grateful for all who prayed for me and shared the Gospel with me. We now have an obligation to do the same for others who have yet to experience salvation.
II. The Compassion of the Lord (23a) – And he took the blind man by the hand, and led him out of the town. Here we discover the compassion Jesus showed the man in need. We find:
A. It was Personal – The man stood in need of a personal touch from the Lord. He was the one who was unable to see. He had a particular need and Jesus dealt with him personally. The healing of others would certainly have been a blessing, but their healing would not have provided sight for him. Jesus was willing to meet the need of this man.
I am thankful for the blessings and salvation of others, but their salvation was not sufficient for me. I too stood in need of the Lord’s touch. While I was surrounded by those who had received their spiritual sight, I remained in darkness. Thankfully Jesus was interested in my need and was willing to provide salvation for me!
B. It was Private – Jesus led the man out of town, away from the distractions and noise, to a private place to deal with his need. This would further affirm that Jesus was aware of his need and genuinely concerned. Jesus was leading the man to a place where He could minister unto him.
Salvation often occurs in a public setting, but it is always a personal and private experience. The Lord leads us to a place of faith through the conviction of the Spirit. We have to come to a place where we realize our need and trust the Lord to provide what we desperately need. One cannot receive salvation without being led of the Lord. He must work in our hearts and lives through the Spirit, leading us to the place of salvation.
III. The Transformation of the Man (23b-26) – As Jesus worked with the blind man, his life was transformed through the power of the Lord. Consider: