John 9:6-12 “When He had said these things, He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay.  And He said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which is translated, Sent).  So he went and washed, and came back seeing.  Therefore the neighbors and those who previously had seen that he was blind said, “Is not this he who sat and begged?”  Some said, “This is he.” Others said, “He is like him.”  He said, “I am he.”  Therefore they said to him, “How were your eyes opened?”  He answered and said, “A Man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes and said to me, ‘Go to the pool of Siloam and wash.’  So I went and washed, and I received sight.”

After Jesus spoke, He spit on the ground and made clay with His saliva and rubbed the man’s eyes with clay.  I think this proves that there were not any rules that were used by Jesus when He healed.  He determined whatever means were necessary, although generally the faith of the one being healed was the conductor of the power from Jesus, although the power is in Him alone.

“And said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which is translated, Sent).  So he went away and washed, and came back seeing.”

The blind man did specifically as Jesus told him to do.  It was not just a simple matter for a blind man to go to the pool of Siloam, but he did as Jesus told him to do, and he did it without question.  I suppose we need to imagine the hopelessness of this man’s life up to the time he met Jesus.  When he met Jesus, there was some hope that he had; a small amount of hope with a small amount of faith.  He reacted obediently to the words of Jesus and made his way to the pool of Siloam which is located at the lower end of the Valley of Jehoshaphat, and is overlooked by the wall of Mount Zion.  The sides of the pool were built up with stones, and there is a column that stands in its middle which indicates that a chapel was once built over it.  It is fifty-four feet long and eighteen feet wide and is probably fed by water from the temple mount.

The blind man, miraculously cured, instead of returning to Jesus, returns happily to his neighborhood, and his neighbors and friends, asked him about his being able to see.  What happened?  They wanted to know if he was the same person they knew as the blind man who used to sit and beg.  If he was, who cured him?  Where was the person who cured him now?  The blind man who had been healed assured his friends that he was the one who had been blind from birth but could now see, and the one who healed him was named Jesus; and Jesus used His spit and dirt and rubbed it on his eyes, and he went away to wash and came back seeing.  And where Jesus was now, or what had become of Him, he did not know.

Now there is some humor because of the discussion on who the man really was.  Some say that the man was the blind beggar who has been healed and can now see.  Others said “no, he is like him”.

The truth is, he is not the same man he once was.  But he said, “I am he”; and put an end to their dispute by his frank admission that he was the blind man, and the beggar they knew before. 

It is the nature of most men upon the sight of any new and strange happening, they are curious to know how it came to pass and who did it.  “Therefore said they unto him, how were your eyes opened?”

This is a Hebrew expression, they call a man’s eyes shut when they cannot receive any light: and a blind man who is made to see is said to have his eyes opened.

We never know the blind man’s name, but asked how he received his sight and he answers that a man called Jesus made clay.  Notice he does not say he spit and made the clay because he did not see how Jesus made the clay, he just said He made clay and anointed my eyes and then told me to go to the pool of Siloam and wash.  I went to the pool and washed and I received my sight.

“And they said to him, where is He?  He said, I do not know.” 

At first, I was irritated with the man who had been blind because he did not return and thank Jesus.  But then I began to realize that Jesus had probably withdrawn on account of the religious rulers, who had already been after Him and He knew they would be irritated with Him because of this miracle.  Plus, Jesus would probably want to avoid the general popularity which He did not seek.  Plus, the man who had been blind had no idea what Jesus looked like, so once I thought about it, how could I really be upset?

 

Lisa DeLancey is a staff writer for The Leader, focusing on education. She is a 2016 graduate of The University of Memphis. 

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