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Living in the Light

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We've spent three weeks on chapter 9. Primarily because there's so much here. Plus it's at a pivot point where Jesus is ending his public ministry. In the healing of the man blind since birth, which takes up the whole chapter, we've seen two things that keep us in spiritual darkness:

  1. Doubt.

  2. Manmade rules.

The third thing that keeps us from seeing spiritually is fear. We see that in John 9:18-23:

The Jews did not believe that he had been blind and had received his sight, until they called the parents of the man who had received his sight and asked them, “Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then does he now see?” His parents answered, “We know that this is our son and that he was born blind. But how he now sees we do not know, nor do we know who opened his eyes. Ask him; he is of age. He will speak for himself.” (His parents said these things because they feared the Jews, for the Jews had already agreed that if anyone should confess Jesus to be Christ, he was to be put out of the synagogue.} Therefore his parents said, “He is of age; ask him.”

That is the response of people who are afraid. What do you hear in their response? First, they kind of throw their son under the bus. They know how he was healed and who healed him. Common sense tells us how could they not? Come on, man. You know. You know. But they were afraid.

Fear keeps us in the dark. The man's parents were afraid because of the very real threat of being put out of the synagogue. That was a frightening prospect. The synagogue was essential to community life. It represented business opportunities. It was social welfare. It was social security. To be put out of the synagogue meant you had no foundation or safety net in your old age. It was a real threat of communal devastation. His parents were afraid.

Their fear was real. It wasn't same made-up, things-go-bump-in-the-night kind of fear. They feared some devastating realities. How do you face fear that's real? How do you overcome spiritual blindness?