Whereas I was blind, now I see - He pays no attention to their cavils, nor to their perversion of justice; but, in the simplicity of his heart, speaks to the fact, of the reality of which he was ready to give them the most substantial evidence.
Whether he be a sinner or no, I know not - The man had just said that he believed Jesus to be a prophet, John 9:17. By his saying that he did not know whether he was a sinner may be meant that though he might be a prophet, yet that he might not be perfect; or that it did not become him, being an obscure and unlearned man, to attempt to determine that question. What follows shows that he did not believe that he was a sinner, and these words were probably spoken in irony to deride the Pharisees. They were perverse and full of cavils, and were determined not to believe. The man reminded them that the question was not whether Jesus was a sinner; that, though that might be, yet it did not settle the other question about opening his eyes, which was the chief point of the inquiry.
One thing I know - About this he could have no doubt. He disregarded, therefore, their cavils. We may learn, also, here:
1.That this declaration may be made by every converted sinner. He may not be able to meet the cavils of others. He may not be able to tell how he was converted. It is enough if he can say, “I was a sinner, but now love God; I was in darkness, but have now been brought to the light of truth.”
2.We should not be ashamed of the fact that we are made to see by the Son of God. No cavil or derision of men should deter us from such an avowal.
3.Sinners are perpetually shifting the real point of inquiry. They do not inquire into the facts. They assume that a thing cannot be true, and then argue as if that was a conceded point. The proper way in religion is first to inquire into the facts, and then account for them as we can.
“It is those who by faith follow Jesus in the great work of the atonement, who receive the benefits of His mediation in their behalf; while those who reject the light which brings to view this work of ministration, are not benefited thereby.”—The Great Controversy, 429, 430. EW xxix.1
Mrs. White then speaks of how the two groups of Advent believers related themselves to the experience of the disappointment of October 22, 1844: EW xxix.2Read in context »
Again the priests and rabbis cried out against Jesus as a blasphemer. His claim to be one with God had before stirred them to take His life, and a few months later they plainly declared, “For a good work we stone Thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that Thou, being a man, makest Thyself God.” John 10:33. Because He was, and avowed Himself to be, the Son of God, they were bent on destroying Him. Now many of the people, siding with the priests and rabbis, took up stones to cast at Him. “But Jesus hid Himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.” DA 470.1
The Light was shining in darkness; but “the darkness apprehended it not.” John 1:5, R. V. DA 470.2
“As Jesus passed by, He saw a man which was blind from his birth. And His disciples asked Him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.... When He had thus spoken, He spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay, and said unto him, Go, wash in the pool of Siloam, (which is by interpretation, Sent). He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing.” DA 470.3Read in context »
Oh, that we might comprehend the love of God, and even to a faint degree take in the compassion that has been manifested toward fallen man! How would we look and live! By beholding Christ man becomes changed and transformed in character from glory to glory. The conflict between light and darkness is entered upon. Look, poor sinner, represented by the lost sheep after whom the shepherd is seeking, look to the cross! ... In the poor blind man restored to sight by the compassionate Shepherd was one whom the self-righteous Pharisees thought only worthy of ... hatred (The Signs of the Times, November 20, 1893). LHU 207.5Read in context »