Seeing Clearly, When You Can't See At All
Posted by Rev. Jeff Dixon, Senior Equipping Minister at Covenant Community Church on Jan 1, 2001, 13:06
On his final journey to Jerusalem for the Passover, Jesus passed through Jericho. Only 18 miles east of Jerusalem, it was the home of Zacchaeus, whom Jesus met on this occasion. Matthew, as a writer, does not give an account of that meeting.
Instead, Matthew paints a picture of two blind men who sought and received a great blessing from God, the restoration of their sight. Jesus healed these men because their hearts and minds were ready to receive that gift. Let’s discover how their example teach us how to let God bless our lives.
First see: What they knew
These men knew who Jesus was
(v.30-31) Two blind men were sitting by the roadside, and when they heard that Jesus was going by they shouted, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us.” The crowd rebuked them and told them to be quiet, but they shouted all the louder, Lord . . .Son of David, have mercy on us!”
Eight hundred years before Jesus walked through Jericho, the prophet Isaiah promised that from the descendants of David, God would raise up a king to establish an eternal kingdom (Isaiah 9:6-7). I am sure these men had no idea what the everlasting kingdom really meant. They did not understand what Jesus was getting ready to do in Jerusalem in the days ahead.
But by addressing Jesus as “the son of David” they revealed that they understood that Jesus was the promised Messiah. He was the promised king (when so many missed it, they had the clarity of sight to accept it. . . it is an awful pun, not intentional though. . they had blind faith).
The foundational truth of Christianity is that Jesus is Lord, he is the King. If you really understand that, you will eventually begin to understand the rest along the way. That puts you on track to grow. When you understand that your life will change
Next see : What they believed
They believed that they could experience God’s power in their lives
(v.33) Lord, they answered, we want our sight
These men asked for and fully expected God to perform a great work. I think there are moments in our lives when God does not seem to do much because we aren’t looking for Him to do much. These men had great expectations, and they believed that in Jesus these expectations could be filled.
In your life, if there are expectations that seem to be unfulfilled, there is only one place to go to find real satisfaction and answers. That is Jesus!
Now notice: What the seized
They seized their one chance to meet Jesus
(v.30) ...and when they heard that Jesus was going by they shouted, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us.” They were not sure they would get another opportunity.
Therese O'Dell, 42, of Somerset, England, was unhappy that she could not get her new washing machine fixed. After a third repairman couldn't fix it, O'Dell blocked his van in her driveway, saying she would not move until she was given a new machine. “At first he thought it was a joke,” she said, “but his face turned from amusement to disbelief to fear very quickly.” The police finally had to respond to negotiate the repairman's release. She got her new machine, and no charges were filed. Therese realized that she had to seize the moment. She would not let it go until she got results. In her case, a new washing machine.
As far as we know this is the only time Jesus went to Jericho. If these two blind men had not insisted on going to Jesus, they would have missed the blessing he gave to them. They seized the moment, they were not going to miss it.
Many people are lost. When they have the opportunity to meet Jesus and let him work in their lives, they hesitate and offer excuses as to why now is not the best time. This is so IMPORTANT! You must seize the moment. Now is the time to get right with God.
I was thinking. In Acts the philosophers on Mars Hill told Paul, “we want to hear you again on this subject” Acts 17:32. To the best of our knowledge, and from history, they never did. Governor Felix said he wanted to hear the gospel another time (Acts 24:24-25). There is no record that that happened. Some people when they read those two thoughts might say, “That is not right, they should have gotten another chance! If God is love, then He should be fair!”
But hold on for a moment. . .Is it not fair? Were they not shared with correctly?
It is fair. They heard what they needed to hear. It was their own fault. They had enough information to respond and they did not. We often feel guilty about what people say or do when we tell them about Jesus. Our job is to share, their job is to respond. By waiting, they are responding.
General Patton once said, “a good plan executed now is better than a perfect plan executed next week.”
Now is the time. They seized their moment and so should we.
Also check out: What they refused
They refused to be discouraged by others
(v.31) The crowd rebuked them and told them to be quiet, but they shouted all the louder, Lord. . Son of David have mercy on us!
The crowd demanded that these blind men keep silent, but they refused and insisted on coming to Jesus. Hebrews 11:6 says that anyone who comes to God must not only believe that he exists but that “he rewards those who earnestly seek him” The blind men followed Jesus after he had healed them. These 2 men did not merely accept the relief of the moment; they gave themselves to the King. Considering all that he has done for us is there any other response?
The group of 25 men and escorts moved rather slowly. This was expected because there were only twenty-three legs and forty-nine arms among them. It was December of 1971 and they were in Las Vegas, guests of Caesars Palace for four days. The New York Amputee Chapter of the Disabled American Veterans had arranged the trip. Normally the men were patients of military hospitals in Pennsylvania and Maryland.
One evening they went to see the comedian Buddy Hackett. The group stayed after the crowd was ushered out of the show room. They sat waiting for Buddy Hackett to come out and meet them personally. As they sat waiting at the table, the showroom manager approached with a black man in his sixties whom they did not recognize. The showroom manager explained that someone wanted to meet them. He said, "Gentlemen, this is Joe Louis, former Heavyweight Champion of the World."
Joe Louis walked up to each man and embraced them in a bear hug. When Joe Louis gives you a bear hug, you begin to feel that maybe your chances are better with a real bear. When he released each man, in his eyes were rivers of tears flowing from wells of love and compassion.
In a humble, loving heart there is more to strength than steel nerves and a fast punch. The measure of a champion is not how many people he knocked down, it is how many he lifted up. The Father is always willing to lift you up!
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