By Caleb Kelly
After a harrowing escape from the temple, where Jesus had essentially called Himself God, and the other Jews had tried to kill Him, Jesus and His disciples were walking on a gravel path. Jesus seemed to be at ease, but some of the disciples weren’t. After what happened, it couldn’t hurt to be cautious, they thought.
While they were walking, they passed a blind man on the side of the road. No one even looked at him. Blind and lame beggars were a common enough sight in ancient times. But one disciple noticed the man, sitting next to the gravel road. He looked closely at him.
Philp glanced every which way before discovering that the entire group was waiting on him.
“Oh, right,” Philp said quietly. He hasn’t realized he had stopped.
Resettling the pack on his shoulders, he caught up with the rest of the group.
“Why did you stop, my son?” Jesus asked.
Philp swallowed, a little nervous.
“I saw that blind man back there,” Philp nodded his head in his direction. “And I was thinking, ‘Who sinned to make him be born like that, he or his parents?” Philp asked Jesus.
Some of the other disciples nodded, understanding where the question was coming from. They believed that problems of any kind were either caused by a parent’s sin or one of their own.
Jesus walked back over to the man, who heard His approach.
“Do you have any spare change, sir?” The man asked, shaking a small jar of clay.
“This man did not sin, neither did his parents,” Jesus said, turning back to face His disciples standing behind Him. “The reason for him being born blind is that people might know the works of God.”
Jesus turned back to the man and spit on the ground.
The blind man heard all that Jesus said, as well as Him spitting. Thinking that Jesus was just making fun of him, he stopped shaking his jar.
Jesus then started mixing the dirt on the edge of the path with His saliva, making mud.
Jesus reached down and scooped some of the mud onto His fingers and asked the man, “Do you trust me?”
“Sir,” the man said, “I have been blind my whole life. But I have learned to tell if someone is trustworthy or not by listening to their voice. And I believe you might be the most trustworthy person I have ever met.” The man braced himself. “Do whatever you think is good to me.”
Jesus smiled at the man, though the man could not see it, him being blind.
Jesus carefully reached over and spread the mud over the man’s eyes, careful not to get any in his nose or mouth.
When the blind man’s eyes were completely covered, making his doubly blind, Jesus said,
“Go, wash off the mud in the pool of Siloam, then come back here. My disciple, John, will lead you there.” Jesus said, nudging John with His shoulder.
John faced Jesus with a look of “Do I have to?”
Jesus nodded. John sighed inaudibly and dropped his bag on the ground.
“Come, sir,” John said, laying his hand on the man’s arm in order to lead him. “Let’s go to the pool.”
A little while later, the man came running back with John trying to keep up.
“Thank you, sir!” the man yelled, “Thank you for giving me my sight!”
John watched the man rejoice in his newly recovered sight. John remembered the moment the man had come out of the water, how he was amazed at how everything looked.
John smiled. He would treasure that memory always.