What About The Man Born Blind?

John 9:1-7







1And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth.  2And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind?  3Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.  4I must work the works of him that sent me...”



Jews believed that pious souls were re-incarnated as a reward, not punishment; and that the wicked were put into eternal prisons to be tormented forever (Josephus, Ant. book XVIII, and War, book II). Some Asiatic nations and some Jews believed souls came back into bodies as a penalty for sins committed in a preexistent state. Controversies raged over whether some physical infirmity was the result of one's sins before birth, even in the womb, or sins by the parents. They held that marks on the body proved sin in the soul.


Hindus identified the sins of a previous life with afflictions of the present. For example, epilepsy was for poisoning someone; blindness for murder of mother; headaches for irreverence to parents; etc.


Neither has this man sinned, nor his parents...” – all the theories of re-incarnation, pre-existent sins, physical infirmities proving personal sin is involved, and all fallacies that go with such paganism are unscriptural. Personal and immediate sin is not necessarily involved the imperfection of reproduction. Mental, moral, and physical wrecks are caused by the fall and sin of man, by Satanic powers (Eph. 2:1-3; Lk. 13:16; Acts 10:38), by continued depravities and sin, by imperfect and undeveloped cells, and by overwork, worry, accidents, and violation of natural laws.


This was not the cause of his blindness, but a simple declaration that the works of God were to be manifest regardless of the cause. Jesus answered their question as to whether the man or his parents had sinned. He did not state the cause, but it is certain God was not the cause. God was the healer and Satan was back of the cause (Mt. 12:22; Acts 10:38; Jn. 10:10; 1 Jn. 3:8).


Why Jesus did this is not explained. One may draw lessons from it, but let no one claim his imaginations are divine explanations of the event.


Had this man not been healed there would have been no glory to God. So today, God does not get glory out of sickness, but out of healing the sick. God may get some glory in spite of some sickness, but the sickness itself is no glory. Anyone, young or old, can certainly glorify God better and do more work for Him when well than when sick. Let no person be deceived in thinking he is sick for God's glory, for there is no scriptural foundation for such modem fallacy.


Thank you Finis Jennings Dake, Dake Publishing, and their book entitled God’s Plan for Man



Editor’s Notes:

The question the disciples ask, “Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind?” is also certainly a valid question in light of Exodus 20:5; 34:7; Numbers 14:18; Deuteronomy 5:9; 28:15-66; Jeremiah 32:18; Ps. 51:5; Isa. 59:2, and Neh. 9:1-3; 1 Peter 1:18.


Some draw the conclusion from this passage that God gets glory out of sickness. If that is true, why did Jesus heal the man?

See also Rationale for Unbelief Explained With Scripture Point 1 Here





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