Mark 8:22-26: “They came to Bethsaida, and some people brought a blind man and begged Jesus to touch him. He took the blind man by the hand and led him outside the village. When he had spit on the man’s eyes and put his hands on him, Jesus asked, “Do you see anything?” He looked up and said, “I see people; they look like trees walking around.” Once more Jesus put his hands on the man’s eyes. Then his eyes were opened, his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly. Jesus sent him home, saying, “Don’t go into the village.”
There are some important life lessons in this account that I have been thinking about and even talking about to some people lately that I want to develop here a little bit more. This story involves Jesus, a blind man and some of the people who knew Him. In other words you have a man in need, intercessors who cared about Him and His need and then the Son of God to whom they bring him too. This account shows us Jesus’ power over human limitations and disabilities thus proving He is the Christ, the Savior of the World. This story also contains some very interesting and perhaps even “unusual” elements in how Jesus goes about restoring sight to this blind man. Let’s break it down and see what we can learn and apply to our lives!
First of all, it is interesting to note that the blind man in this story had friends who loved him enough to bring Him to Jesus. He never would have been able to find Jesus on His own (he was blind!). Think about that right now. There are people in your life who are spiritually “blind.” Do you love them enough to lead them and bring them to Jesus if they are willing? Have you ever asked them or spoken to them about Him? Have you “brought” them to Him in prayer or to a church service or bible study (or whatever!) and begged Jesus to “touch” them that they might see? Thank God for the “intercessors” some of us have had in our lives who have “brought” us to Jesus! Now it’s our turn!
Secondly, I find it fascinating that once the man was brought to Jesus, He didn’t just heal Him right there and then in that place and in that very moment. Rather, it says “He took the blind man by the hand and led him outside the village.” Why?
One of the things I have been meditating on and sharing one on one with some people recently, is a valuable life lesson I find in this that has been and is important in my own life. That lesson is this: sometimes in order to see clearly or have our vision/focus renewed or restored, we need to let Jesus lead us by the hand out of the environment we are in and have grown accustomed too. So many times in my own life, it was by getting “away” for even a brief amount of time…that the “fog” would begin to lift and I would be able to see clearly or see things I never “saw” before!
Going on a mission’s trip for example opens your eyes to things you never saw before and opens your eyes to seeing the world in a very different way. Just getting away and alone with Jesus somewhere outside of your normal surroundings cannot be overstated or stressed enough. I encourage you to do just that whether it simply means getting in your car and going somewhere you don’t normally go for a few hours or day or weekend; or going on a missions trip somewhere. It is so important. (P.S…contact me if interested, as we have several trips planned this year, in India, Ukraine, Nepal & Uganda that you could go on with either me or through ServeNow!)
Secondly, the fact that Jesus led him by the hand is a very tender and comforting reality. Jesus is willing to lead us if we will be willing to follow Him! Going somewhere outside our environment or what we are familiar with or comfortable with, can be daunting or uncomfortable. Worse yet, is when you can’t see where you are going! But what a comforting reality that not only will Jesus be with us every step of the way, but He goes before us and leads us by the hand! Let Him lead you to where He wants to take you! He knows what He is doing and where He is going and where to take you! And it’s in that state of vulnerability, humility and dependency that you will come to know His power in fresh ways in your life! And trust Him! You don’t need to figure it all out in advance! Better to actually “see” for real, than just “understand” in your mind!
Thirdly, besides Jesus not healing this man right where He was, He also does something else “unusual.” It says that he “spit on the man’s eyes.” Ever wonder why He did that? Me too. Let me know if you ever figure out why!
Joking aside, I think there may have been several reasons for this. One reason makes for a great point. Jesus often works in different ways in different people’s lives. Sometimes He touched people and healed them. One time a woman touched Him and was healed! Other times He simply spoke and they were healed. The point is, we can’t reduce this to formula, because this is about relationship. If we could reduce to a formula (as some so called “faith healers” try to do to scam people of their money) somebody should start a “spitting” ministry! Imagine! “$5.00 for a cup of spit that will heal your diseases…order today and we’ll even give you a discount on our special “miracle mud!”
But seriously and secondly, this reminds us that sometimes Jesus works in unusual or unique ways in our lives. Sometimes how He may lead us, or what He may begin to do in our lives, might not make sense to us! But what is important is that we follow His leading and allow Him to work in our lives however He chooses or desires. Because how He works…works!
Thirdly, notice that Jesus put His hands on this man’s eyes twice. The first time the man began to see but not fully. It wasn’t until the second time that He saw everything clearly. The first time He saw the “form” but the second time he saw the full details and with total clarity! Can you imagine?? Yet how many of us are “seeing” something but not seeing it “fully?”
This reminds us that sometimes we need more than one touch from Jesus! We can be “slow” to “see” or “learn” or “change” or adjust the way we have “viewed” life. Sometimes there is a process that takes some time! There were stages to this healing. Likewise, there are stages in our spiritual development and discernment. Sometimes we need another touch from Jesus! Be honest with yourself and with God. Let Him continue to work in your life and give you even greater and clearer spiritual perception!
Fourthly, notice Jesus sent him back home, but warned him not to go back into a particular village. What is this about? Well, this is a good reminder that there are “places” we shouldn’t go back to after Jesus has touched us. Places that may have robbed us of our “sight” to begin with. Places or relationships that may have “clouded” our vision. Activities or sinful habits that have “darkened” our minds and hearts. Heed His warnings!
Lastly, think about this. Jesus spoke to Him. Jesus led Him. But now, this man saw Him! He came to really and truly know Him. When you respond to His “voice” (His Word) and follow His leading, and let Him work in your life how He chooses, you will come to not only know His ways, but know and “see” Him! How awesome is that?