JESUS: THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD
Intro: As a boy Robert Louis Stevenson was intrigued by the work of the old lamplighter who went about with a ladder and a torch, setting the street lights ablaze for the night. One evening in Edinburgh, Scotland, as young Robert stood watching with childish fascination, his parents heard him exclaim, “Look, look! There is a man out there punching holes in the darkness!”
With one statement of childish wonder, Robert Louis Stevenson summed up the life of the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus came into this world and accomplished many great and miraculous wonders, yet His primary purpose was to punch great gaping holes in the spiritual darkness that shrouded this world. He came to be The Light Of The World, v. 5.
In this passage detailing the healing and salvation of a poor, blind man is shining brightly. While we have the opportunity today, let’s take some time and look at Jesus: The Light Of The World. If you find that your are in darkness this morning, I am here to tell you that Jesus can and will lead you into the light if you will respond to Him call and come to Him by faith. Notice three great truths from this passage that reveal Jesus as The Light Of The World.
- V. 1-10 THE MISERY OF THE SIGHTLESS MAN
- V. 1 His Blindness – This man, according to the Scripture was born blind. To my way of thinking, this would be one of the most horrible of physical handicaps. To never se a sunset, the face of a child, the face of a loved one would be a terrible thing. Yet, this man had lived his entire life in this state of darkness.
(Ill. May I say that there is a blindness that is far worse than having sightless eyes? It is far worse to be in spiritual darkness. And, that is the place where the entire world, apart from Jesus, finds itself – 2 Cor. 4:4. If you have never received Jesus as your Savior, you are in deep spiritual darkness this morning. However, there is hope for you!)
- V. 2-3 His Birth – The Scriptures seem to indicate that this man was born not only handicapped, but also in poverty. His birth seems to be a thing of terrible misfortune. Many would say that he would have been better off if he had never been born. However, we find that Jesus felt otherwise. He tells the Disciples that this man’s handicap was allowed by God so that God could get glory from this man’s life.
(Ill. What a wonderful truth! Men need to realize that God can take any life regardless of how that life has been ruined by sin, save it by His grace and turn it into a thing of endless blessing and joy! After all, man’s purpose is to fellowship with and to glorify God – Isa. 43:7. Jesus specializes in salvaging old, wasted lives – 2 Cor. 5:17.)
- V. 8 His Begging – This man was unable to find employment and as a result he was reduced to begging for what food and money he received. This is a pitiful state in which to be. This was no rich man, it would even appear that his parents were not all that interested in his well being – v. 20-22. This is a picture of absolute poverty.
(Ill. This is the same situation every lost sinner finds himself/herself in today. Spiritually speaking, apart from Jesus, you are hopelessly bankrupt and have no way of providing the things you need on a spiritual level. Oh, men try to satisfy the spiritual itch that resides in their soul. They seek to do this through drugs, alcohol, illicit sex, etc. However, these are only forms of begging. True spiritual peace will be found nowhere else but in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ. He endured poverty that you and I might be made rich in Him, 2 Cor. 8:9. Jesus endured great spiritual, as well as physical poverty, so that you and I might enjoy the richest of the Lord’s great spiritual blessings. (I.e. Salvation. Eternal life, Heaven, Holy Spirit, Adoption, etc.)
- The Misery Of A Sightless Man
- V. 11-38 THE MINISTRY OF A SOVEREIGN MASTER
- He Was Exposed To The Light – When Jesus passed by, this man’s life was forever changed. Jesus, first, healed him of his physical handicap. (Ill. The anointing of the eyes with the clay and the spittle would have caused irritation to the eyes. When Jesus comes to the sinner in convicting power, He causes irritation of the heart and the soul. Do not despise this! For, it is the only way anyone can ever be saved, John 6:44. When the man went to Siloam and washed his eyes, he was healed of his blindness. Notice that when the people asked him what had happened, he never mentioned the spittle, v. 11. Why not? Simply because he had not seen it take place! He was blind! There is a lesson here for us. There are times when God is working in our lives to try and bring us to Himself. Often, we cannot see the Lord’s work, and even after we are saved, we may never realize all the little things God did to bring us to the place of salvation.)
After Jesus exposed the man to the physical light, he began to lead him through a series of events that brought him face to face with who Jesus really is. Being able to see with these physical eyes is never enough. We must also come to the place where are able to see spiritual truth. That is what Jesus did here. Notice the progression this man went through as the light began to dawn in him life.
- V. 10-12 A Man Who Is Called Jesus – When the people asked this man who had healed him, all he knew was that it was some fellow named Jesus. It could have been any a thousand men, just some guy named Jesus.
(Ill. This is where some are today. All they know is that Christians get all excited about some fellow named Jesus. But, just knowing a little about Jesus, or being able to speak His name is not enough to save you. Because if you do not know Him any better than this, then you do not know Him at all! If that is the case, then you will be unable to help others find Him also, v. 12.)
(Ill. This is very limited knowledge, but it is the first step one the road to salvation.)
- V. 13-17 He Is A Prophet – When the Pharisees heard of the miracle, they called the blind man to them and tried to get to the bottom of the thing. Some of them were upset that Jesus had done this miracle on the Sabbath day. They concluded that if He would do something considered to be work on the Sabbath, then he must be a sinner. They asked the fellow that had been blind and he said that Jesus was “a Prophet.” In other words, “He is a man to be listened to.” This man had listened to Jesus once and that obedience had resulted in his healing. Therefore, he concludes that Jesus is worthy of being listened to.
(Ill. There are many who have received this much light today. Their opinion of Jesus is that He is a wise man, a great teacher, a “way-shower”. However, before salvation will ever shine the glory of its power deep in your soul, you are going to have to realize that He is far more than One showing the way. You are going to have to come to the place where you see Him as “the Way, the Truth and the Life!”, or you will never be saved!)
- V. 18-33 He Is A Man Of God – Through a series of questions by the Pharisees and some pretty good preaching on the part of this man, he arises at the conclusion that Jesus is a man of God. That is, He is a man to be followed. He even asks the Pharisees if they would like to follow Him also. He has come to believe that Jesus is a great man, One who is working and speaking for God.
(Ill. He is right, but he isn’t going quiet far enough! Lost people have to get past Jesus the man and realize that He is also God! He wasn’t just a man of God, He was the God-man, John 1:1; 14. An ordinary man could never have provided salvation to sinners. It took One who was both God and man at the same time to pay the eternal price for our sins and forever set us free from the penalty that was hanging over our heads. You must come to the place where you are willing to accept Him s God, or you will never be saved. He is more than a teacher, a preacher, a prophet, a miracle worker, or some poor guy who got himself hanged on a cross. He was, and is, God in human flesh!)
- V. 34-38 He Is The Son Of God – Finally, Jesus comes to the man personally and when He does, He reveals His true identity to this man. At this point, the man confesses Jesus to be the Son of God and is gloriously saved. This man had progressed from seeing Jesus as one among many, or one to be listened to, or one to be followed. He now sees Jesus as one who is worthy of faith and worship. He sees Him for who He truly is!
(Ill. This is the conclusion men must arrive at before they can ever be saved! Either He is the Son of God as He said, or He is not worthy of our worship and our faith. If He is not the Son of God, then you and I are headed for Hell this morning. If He is not who the Bible proclaims Him to be then of all men, we are most miserable, 1 Cor. 15:19. This fellow’s progression lead him from seeing Jesus as “A Good Man”, to seeing Him as “The God Man.” This is the place where we all have to get to if we ever expect to be saved. Have you reached that place this morning?)
- V. 34 He Was Expelled By The Leaders – When this man refused to bow to the pressure from the religious leaders, he was cast out of their synagogue. To us, this may not seem like a big thing, but to the Jews, it was devastating. However, this man had probably been black balled by religion for a long time anyway due to his handicap. Since he wasn’t used to their form of worship, it probably wasn’t such a big thing to him.
(Ill. From my way of thinking, it was the best thing that could have ever happened to him. You see, religion has a way of indoctrinating men to a certain way of thinking and often religious people cannot see Christ for their creeds. In fact, religion apart from salvation is a dead thing! It will take you nowhere but to Hell! Therefore, it may have been in this man’s best interests that he was cast out by these leaders.)
(Ill. The story is told about a man who claimed that he “got religion.” An old crony who knew about his shameful past heard the news, called him on the phone, and said, “Joe, they tell me you’ve got religion.” “I sure have,” came the reply. His friend responded, “Then I suppose you’ll be going to church every Sunday.” “That’s right,” Joe affirmed, “I started 5 weeks ago and haven’t missed a service since.” “And I suppose you’re going to quit smoking and drinking.” “Already have,” Joe replied. “In fact, I haven’t smoked a cigarette or touched a drop of liquor since.” His friend paused for a moment. Finally, remembering how much money Joe owed him, he said with an intended jab, “I suppose too, now that you’ve got religion, you’re going to pay up all your old debts.” At that point Joe exploded and exclaimed, “Now wait a minute! That’s not religion you’re talking about; that’s business!” This is always the problem with religion it may change the outside, but it can never cure the problem of the heart.)
(Ill. Religion has a way of smothering Jesus. A young married couple decided to hold a christening party on the night before their baby’s baptism at church. When the guests arrived, the infant was laid on the guest-room bed. A few guests came into the room, and, not noticing the baby, flung their coats upon the bed. Soon the infant had been completely covered by heavy coats. The next morning, the newspaper told the tragic account of the baby that had been smothered to death at his own christening party.
Is this what we have done? Have we covered the Baby with our religious trappings and distracting political issues? Have we forgotten our main purpose–to spread the glorious message of salvation in Jesus Christ? Have we smothered the Baby in the midst of his own Church?)
(Ill. Never think for one minute that your religious activity is going to get you into Heaven or into a right relationship with God. Salvation is always accomplished by faith and never by the works of the flesh – Eph. 2:8-9; Gal. 2:16. The only thing that saves is faith in Jesus! (Ill. Abraham – Romans 4:22) Acts 16:31.
- V. 25 He Was Excited About His Life – This man was not theologian, but he knew what had happened to him personally! He couldn’t explain what had happened, but he knew that he had met someone who had the power to make an eternal difference in his life. When he looked at where he had been and what Jesus had done in his life, he was more than a little excited!
(Ill. This is true in the life of every child of God. You may not shout like a Comanche Indian. You may not lap the church like an Indy racer, but if you are saved by the grace of God, you will know it and you will never get over it! I believe that the saving power of the Lord Jesus Christ is something to get excited about, don’t you?)
- The Misery Of A Sightless Man
- The Ministry Of A Sovereign Master
III. THE MESSAGE OF A SUPERNATURAL MIRACLE
- V. 5 Jesus Is A Shining Light – When He walked upon this earth, Jesus was in the business of delivering men from darkness. May I say that He is still doing that today? If you have never been saved, you can come to Jesus today and He will bring you out of the darkness and the bondage in which you find yourself. He is still a Shining Light and a Savior to all who will come to Him – Matt. 11:28; Rev. 22:17.
- V. 35 Jesus Is A Seeking Light – After this man had been cast out by the Jews, Jesus went looking for Him. This is why He came – Luke 19:10. It may the case with you that religion wouldn’t have you, many churches wouldn’t want to be around you and most people wouldn’t have anything to do with you, but let me tell you that Jesus Christ loves you just like you are and will save you by His grace if you will only come to Him by faith and ask Him. (Ill. He is still seeking souls to save this morning!)
- V. 38 Jesus Is A Saving Light – When this man bowed and received Jesus, I am sure that he forgot about the days of blindness and the pain of being removed from the Synagogue. When he called on the name of Jesus, He was eternally saved and received into a family from which he will never be removed! (Ill. Did you realize that what God does in saving the sinner is a forever work? John 10:28-29; 1 Pet. 1:5)
Conc: This man never expected that he would be healed and saved when he got up that morning. I am sure that he planned to live that day like everyday before in the blackness of darkness. He did not realize that there was a man named Jesus who drive the darkness forever away from his life. Many are in that same shape today! They are lost and in the depths of great spiritual darkness and they do not even realize that Jesus can set them free forever. If they do understand this, they feel that it is something for others and not for themselves. Allow me to remind you this morning that Jesus loves all men just as they are and that He will save anyone who will come to Him by simply faith. The question is, which do you prefer, darkness? Or light? If you are tired of the dark come to Jesus and step into the Light of His glorious salvation. Will you do that today?