I Am The One!
John 9:8-12 HCSB His neighbors and those who formerly had seen him as a beggar said, "Isn't this the man who sat begging?" (9) Some said, "He's the one." "No," others were saying, "but he looks like him." He kept saying, "I'm the one!" (10) Therefore they asked him, "Then how were your eyes opened?" (11) He answered, "The man called Jesus made mud, spread it on my eyes, and told me, 'Go to Siloam and wash.' So when I went and washed I received my sight." (12) "Where is He?" they asked. "I don't know," he said.
The once blind–man had to keep saying, “I’m the one!” because no one would believe the mighty change that had occurred to him. They thought he was ‘just a normal person” and not the recipient of a miracle.
We need to cry out: I am the one God saved, I am the one God healed, I am the one who has been transformed and made whole! After healing, we are made “normal’ just like anyone else and there is no sign on us that says: “a mighty miracle was done here”.
You see God hides His miracles! The leper is made clean and just looks like a normal man. Lazarus rises from the grave and walks around like any other man. The drunkard becomes sober and goes and gets a normal job in the gas station. The child is healed from the fever and goes out and plays ball. At the end of all God’s miracles is a “normal” person, someone no different from anyone else. We would almost expect someone who received a miracle to have a shiny halo, or at least a tag saying: “a miracle happened here”. But God is too humble for that!
Most miracles do not take us from sickness to superman. They just return us to our place in society and in ministry.
Normality may be the greatest miracle of all. Some figures just came out saying that 46% of Americans will have a mental illness at some point in their life and 26% have had a severe mental illness in the past twelve months. Nearly everyone feels somewhat weird inside.
God seems to want a world full of normal functioning people who “take up their mat and walk”, who live independent lives and contribute to society. He does not seem to want “miracle junkies” who turn to God for “miracles” to solve ordinary problems they should be solving themselves. God’s aim is to produce loving maturity, wisdom and strength, in His sons and daughters. If healing is needed, for this to happen then we can ask Him for a miracle, if just our own effort is needed for this to happen – then we should get to work.
Many people have come to me with great inner pain and anxiety and after a few session of inner healing, much to their surprise they just “feel normal”. The pain is gone, the anxiety is relieved etc. And they are often mildly disappointed! Normal was not what was expected, generally ecstasy or some other holy pious feeling is expected as the result of healing. However true healing leaves us solid, strong, wise., balanced, with inward poise and perception and feeling just a normal sane person going about life as it should be gone about.
It is surprising how MANY people have experienced healings, dreams, visions, and the like. Not every day, but once or twice in their life or even more. “Oh that is just when I was healed of my back problem when the pastor prayed for me.” Is a common type of response – and they probably even forgot to tell the pastor!
After the miracle – the man stopped begging! He used to sit begging, but now no more. After a life of blindness he now had to go out and learn new skills and perhaps work in the field. Miracles end something, that is why some people do not want them, an identity is lost, a place, an occupation a “sitting’ somewhere. Miracles often lead to increased responsibility – when Paul was knocked off his horse and then healed of his blindness, it was so he could become an apostle.
“The man called Jesus” - Jesus means Savior and he saves us from sin and sickness and death. At this point the once-blind man had no theology, he did not even call Jesus a prophet or a rabbi, but he was still healed. It was only later in the chapter, when Jesus meets him that he comes to faith. This tells us that a right heart is more important than right theology when it comes to seeing God at work.
“So when I went and washed I received my sight.” So when I went, and washed, I received. If we want to receive God’s blessing we must follow his instructions. Naaman, the leper who was a Syrian general was told to wash seven times in the Jordan. He felt belittled by the instruction but he was persuaded to obey, and his obedience brought the blessing. Many of God’s promises are contingent on certain instructions “Seek and ye shall find…” (Matthew 7;7) “Confess your sins to one another that you may be healed (James 5:16) repent and turn back …so that times of refreshing may come..(Acts 3:19). You must follow the instruction if you want the blessing.
“The Pool of Siloam..’ why not wash off the mud with “any old water” perhaps from a pool by the side of the road? Certainly the Pool of Siloam was noted for its water, but perhaps Jesus wanted him to go to a place associated with the history of Jerusalem. God’s instructions can be very, very specific. 1 Kings 13 tells the story of a prophet who was told by God not to “eat bread, or drink water, or go back by the way he came”. When another prophet tricked him into disobeying this he was killed by a lion!
God’s instructions are not open to our interpretation. We are simply to do what God says – and not make any convenient substitutions! If God says “go to China” we cannot substitute Greenwich Village instead. If God says “bible college” we cannot substitute Harvard.
The once-blind man is a very honest person. He never makes anything up and he sticks by his guns the whole chapter. He is absolutely factual, and when he does not know – he says so. I like him and I think Jesus liked him too!