Imagine meeting a well-known rich man with a fleet of exotic cars and who was living in a choice area, but now living in a slum. May this not be your portion! The other version is to see a former security man of five years ago becoming chauffeur-driven now as the MD of a blue-chip company. That is the journey of life!
John chapter 9 captures the story of a man born blind. Imagine a man, who did not know how his parents look like. He had never seen his own face in the mirror to know whether he is handsome or ugly. If you tell him that he is dark in complexion, he does not know what it means. Buy him the most expensive dress and he does not know the difference between it and the one he wears when he goes to bed at night. If you frown your face when he offends you, it means nothing to him. The economy is sour and people with good vision find it difficult to fend for themselves. How then will a blind man feed? His agony is beyond imagination.
That was the lot of the youth when the Lord Jesus met him, but before that, He had met a man who had been sick for 38 years. Children who were born the day he was afflicted by that sickness, must have finished their education, got married and their children would be in school. Thank God for the gift of Jesus to man. He is fond, till today, of meeting people at their points of need. Before He said anything to the man, His disciples asked Him whether it was the youth’s sin or that of his parents’ that caused the blindness. Both are possible. Sin causes sickness but not all the time. A man can be a victim of circumstances, such as suffering for being present at a doomed place or for the sin of other people. In the case of the youth, the Lord Jesus said that neither he nor his parents sinned, but that God’s works would be made manifest.
Without an admission card, consulting fees, x-ray, et cetera, as it is normal with our hospitals, Jesus mixed His saliva with clay and with it, rubbed the youth’s eyes before sending him to the pool of Siloam to wash his face. The mixture of saliva and sand was a type of anointing oil, which often, is abused grossly today. There is nothing wrong with anointing oil so long as we appreciate the fact that oil is oil. This means that palm oil, vaseline, in fact, any type of oil can be used. Secondly, it is not the oil that heals but faith in God’s Word. Had the youth gone home, ignoring the counsel of Jesus of going to the pool, he would have remained blind. Praise God, he obeyed, and his eyes were restored immediately. Submission to God’s Word attracts God’s blessings.
Some people, who saw him, recognized him as the fellow who had been blind and begging for alms. One would have expected them to rejoice with him or seek Jesus to open their ‘blind’ eyes so that they would know Him as Lord and personal Saviour. Some of them, however, seeing that the youth’s eyes had been restored, could not associate him with the beggar they knew. Glory! ‘If any man be in Christ,’ says the Bible, ‘he is a new creature, old things pass away and behold, all things (about him) become new’. Nobody, who is born-again, remains in his old life. People will always notice the difference. To help them resolve the raging argument concerning his identity, the youth said, ‘Na me’ – John 9:9.
He was saying, ‘This is the blind man you used to know. Na me, the thief, that used to steal your goats. Yes, this is Lazarus, the man you buried four days ago. It is me, the man suffering from that terminal sickness,who six years ago, doctors had given six months to live. It is me, your servant in 1980. Na me, the spinster nobody believed would still marry. This is Mike, my husband. Yes, Na me, the lady married ten years ago without children; these twins are my babies’.
The Lord Jesus changes lives, situations, etc. One day, He also told His disciples, ‘Na Me’. That was the day He relaxed His law of gravitation and walked on the sea without sinking! As His disciples were afraid, thinking it was a spirit, He said, ‘Na Me’ – John 6:50. He even encouraged Uncle Peter to do the same and he did, fixing his eyes on Him. But when he started looking at the boisterous sea, he started to sink. This is why the Bible enjoins us to be, ‘Looking (always) unto Jesus, the Author and the Finisher of our faith’. Peter then called on Him and Jesus rescued him. The disciples were present during His crucifixion and confirmation of death. From Friday to Sunday morning, He was in the grave. Later in the day, He appeared to them. ‘It is Me,’ He assured them.
When I was growing up in the village, I observed that the devil was glorified for good thing, such as childbirth, and evil things were attributed to God. So it was with the Jews. They could not rejoice with the man whose eyes had been restored by Jesus. They argued that he was never blind. Some people are like them today. Still doubting, they dragged the youth to his parents to find out if he was ever blind. They were also angry that Jesus manifested His healing power on a Sabbath day. To their astonishment, the boy ministered to them. ‘One thing I know,’ said he, ‘once I was blind but now, I see’.
I did many wrong things as an unbeliever but that great day, April 16, 1972, Jesus saved me, and opened my blind eyes, my life changed. I may not be good at remembering things, but one thing I will never forget is that I was once blindfolded by sin and Jesus saved me. I remember how I then apologized to a lady for our immoral relationship. What about you? Has Jesus saved you? Going home after the Scripture Union Fellowship at Enugu in 1972 one day, in excitement, I started pouring out testimonies of my walk with Jesus. One of us, Bro. Emma Okorie, recalling my life as an unbeliever, was overwhelmed by my new life. ‘Even this man?’ he shouted joyfully. ‘Na me,’ I replied. Praise God!
For further comment, Please contact: Osondu Anyalechi: 0909 041 9057; [email protected]