Summary: “So Jesus answered and said to him, ‘What do you want me to do for you?’ The blind man said to Him, ‘Rabboni, that I may receive my sight.’ Then Jesus said to him ‘Go your way; your faith had made you well.’ And immediately he received his sight and follo
Theme: What marvels the Lord works for us
Text: Jer. 31:7-9; Heb. 7:23-28; Mark 10:46-52
Every human being, no matter how talented, is also limited in a particular way. Some people learn how to deal with their limitations and make the maximum use of their talents while others fail to use of their talents giving their limitations as an excuse for their failures. We can all rise to the potential God has placed within us if we would not allow our limitations to distract us. It is very often more convenient for us instead of dealing with our limitations to rather compare ourselves to those we believe are not as good as we are. When Jesus told Peter about the limitations he would face in his old age when someone would have to lead him by the hand and make him go where he did not want to go, instead of Peter asking the Lord how he could adjust to and deal with that situation, he rather wanted to know how it would be with John. It is as if we are not really concerned about dealing with our own limitations as long as those close to us are also experiencing those limitations. Limitations, setbacks and problems are a real fact in life and today’s gospel reading is about the limitations placed on a man due to blindness. Blindness in Bible times was far worse that it is today. It reduced a person to begging since there was neither help nor work for such a person. Even today, especially in developing countries, the blind are really limited or as others would say handicapped and are not even considered when various projects are being planned. There are no facilities for them in homes and offices neither are there facilities for them in the area of transportation. In our nation even providing white canes for them is a problem and those who possess them cannot cope with the many potholes on our streets and pavements. How can they cope when even those with good eyesight find it difficult to cope? What a blind person really needs is the restoration of his or her sight. Medical science has been helping to restore the sight of some of those who are blind but their treatment relates only to physical blindness and they can do nothing about spiritual blindness. The only person that is able to deal with both types of blindness is Jesus Christ. What marvels the Lord works for us?
When we talk about being blind we normally mean not being able to see with our eyes. But there is also a blindness that affects the eyes of our spiritual understanding. There is physical blindness and there is spiritual blindness. Bartimaeus was blind physically and could not see Jesus with his eyes but he saw Him for Who He is. He saw Him with his spiritual eyes. In fact those who are spiritually blind are even worse off than those who are physically blind because spiritual blindness has eternal consequences. Spiritual blindness is failing to see God for Who He is and trusting Him to fulfil what He says. Spiritual blindness leads to eternal separation from God.
Bartimaeus, because he was blind, was a beggar living on the generosity of others. This limitation prevented any gainful employment, as he could not see the things around him for what they really were. We all know the story about three blind men who were asked to describe an elephant. The first blind man went up to the elephant and felt its trunk that to him was long and thin. He therefore described the elephant as a large snake. The second blind man felt the leg of the elephant and he described the elephant as a large and round tree. The third blind man felt the tail of the elephant and he described the elephant as a rope. They were all right in a way but their descriptions were inadequate because they did not have the full picture. In the same way spiritual blindness limits our sight and prevents us from seeing spiritual things as they really are. A team of intercessors from Sweden were invited to hold a revival in an American city and after a few days they realised that the attendance was extremely poor. They were not used to this situation at all and they began to investigate. Suddenly it dawned on them that although they were in a predominantly black area all the ministers involved in the revival from the city were white and all those who came were also white. Suddenly their eyes were opened and spiritually they saw a spirit of racism operating in the city and preventing the people from responding to the good news. The next night they called a meeting of all the ministers in the city and for the first time white and black ministers met in the same Church. As they prayed together a spirit of reconciliation began to move among them and they began to embrace each other and confess the sin of envy that had separated them. All subsequent meetings that took place after that night were well attended with all races taking part and the city experienced its greatest revival. Spiritual blindness, like physical blindness, prevents us from seeing spiritual things as they really are. We can overcome this limitation by coming to Christ to restore our sight. The Lord says, “we should call to Him and He will answer us and tell us great and unsearchable things we do not know.”