John 9 and man's responsibility

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by webdog, Oct 29, 2007.

  1. webdog

    webdog
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    John 9 deals with Jesus healing the man born blind from birth. Jesus spit on the ground, put the mud on his eyes and told him to go to the pool and wash.


    Do you see the man's actions as a work...or an act of faith?

    Do you believe the man was sovereign, or can take any credit for seeing by washing the mud off of his eyes? Does anybody in John 9 give him any credit for his sight, including Jesus?
     
  2. Isaiah40:28

    Isaiah40:28
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    Why don't you give your answers first and we can interact with what you provide as well as add our own answers.
     
  3. npetreley

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    You totally missed the point of this passage. It has nothing whatsoever to do with what the man did or had to do.

    The lawyers of the time picked apart the law so much that they legislated spitting on the Sabbath. It was permissible to spit on a rock on the Sabbath because all you made was a wet rock. But it was against their man-made law to spit on dirt, because that made mud, and mud was used in work. So spitting on dirt constituted "work" and was therefore against their law on the Sabbath.

    Jesus was making a statement about the absurdity of their man-made laws when He spat on the dirt and made mud to cure this man's blindness. Just read on and you'll see that the Pharisees were bent out of shape because this all took place on the Sabbath.

    It's just plain silly to take this passage about Jesus and man-made laws and turn it into an analogy about faith.
     
  4. webdog

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    Sure. I believe the man had faith that he would see, hence him going and washing was an act of faith.

    I believe the man could take no credit for his sight.

    I believe no credit was given to the man for his newfound sight.
     
  5. webdog

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    I appreciate your view, and everything you put forth. I think many stories in Scripture are multifaceted, and you gave a good view.

    On the other hand, I don't think you can dismiss faith in this story, either. If the man had no faith that he was going to be healed, he would have just used his sleeve to wipe off the spit. I don't think it's silly to see faith in this story at all, matter of fact, it's not a coincidence that Jesus used the faith of those who were healed. Jesus could have easily just healed who He did without asking them to do anything in return. I see the similie of faith and salvation spattered throughout Jesus' healings.

    Here is another question I thought of. Was this man's ability to go to the pool and wash off his eyes given to only him, meaning could he not get up and go to the pool unless Jesus told him to?
     
    #5 webdog, Oct 29, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 29, 2007
  6. npetreley

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    Sorry, but this passage is not an analogy about saving faith. I think you're misapplying the passage in order to make it fit your personal view of how faith works.
     
  7. webdog

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    I know it's not an analogy about saving faith. It's not an analogy at all, but a story demonstrating someone being healed by Jesus' grace through faith.

    Do you want to take a stab at the questions?
     
  8. npetreley

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    No, because the questions are meaningless. The passage isn't about what you want it to be about.

    I seem to recall quite some time ago someone tried to do this sort of thing (maybe it was even you) to "prove" that people had to WANT to be healed before Jesus would heal them. He/she forgot that in one case, Jesus healed someone who wasn't asking for healing.

    Again, you're starting with your conclusions about faith and trying to tack them onto this passage, which has nothing to do with your personal opinions about faith. So there's no point in answering your questions.
     
  9. 2 Timothy2:1-4

    2 Timothy2:1-4
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    You ask a very good question. Faith in the work of God is most certainly involved in this passage. Credit never belongs to man no matter what response God requires. Works are all about the heart and intent not the act.
     
  10. Pastor_Bob

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    Nor is it what you want it to be about friend. The spittle was considered medicinal in that day. The Pharisees regarded the Sabbath so strictly that they considered the preparation and use of medicines as contrary to the law. It had nothing to do with spitting on the mud; it had every thing to do with making medicine with which to cure this man eye disease.

    Jesus was demonstrating that the power of healing came from God. Spittle was considered medicinal, so Jesus mixed the spittle with clay to demonstrate that it was His power that healed the blind man and not the spittle which was now contaminated by the clay. This event was to demonstrate that Jesus had power to give sight to the blind.

    The man's obedience was certainly a factor here, as was Namaan's when told to dip in the muddy Jordan seven times.
     
  11. Isaiah40:28

    Isaiah40:28
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    I agree with you that he went and washed as an act of faith, but I would label it as an initial act of faith with a saving faith yet to come.
    He suggests in verse 17 that Jesus is a prophet.
    By verse 38 he professes his belief in Jesus as the Son of Man, which is a reference I think to the deity of Christ which then causes him to worship Jesus.
     
  12. Isaiah40:28

    Isaiah40:28
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    Are you asking if the man could have gone and washed off without Jesus telling him to? I'm not sure I understand the question.

    What parallels are you trying to draw from this passage?
     
  13. pinoybaptist

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    But you just credited him with faith, WD.

    He had faith he would see, and that faith propelled him to obey.
     
  14. lbaker

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    So why didn't his faith just heal him immediately, instead of having to go and do something, washing off the mud?
     
  15. npetreley

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    He didn't spit in the mud. He spat on the dirt and MADE mud/clay. Clay is used in work.

    Nothing in there about spit or medicinal value. I also got my interpretation from a (messianic) Jewish scholar I know back in New Jersey.
     
  16. Pastor_Bob

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    "Jesus probably used the clay to aid the man's faith. His so doing gave the Pharisees a chance to cavil at Jesus for breaking the Sabbath. If later rabbis report correctly, the traditions of that day, clay might be put on the eyes for pleasure on the Sabbath, but not for medicine, nor might the eyes be anointed with spittle on that day." The Fourfold Gospel

    "Others think, he made use of spittle, because the Jews had a great opinion of the medicinal virtue of spittle; and, they say, forbade the medicinal use of it on the sabbath day, on which day this miracle was wrought." Matthew Poole's Commentary

    "Especially it was particularly forbidden among them to use spittle on that day to heal diseased eyes. See instances in Lightfoot. Jesus, therefore, by making this spittle, showed them that their manner of keeping the day was superstitious, and that he dared to do a thing which they esteemed unlawful. He showed that their interpretation of the law of the Sabbath was contrary to the intention of God, and that his disciples were not bound by their notions of the sacredness of that day." Albert Barnes Commentary

    "The curative effects of saliva are held in many places. The Jews held saliva efficacious for eye-trouble, but it was forbidden on the Sabbath. "That Jesus supposed some virtue lay in the application of the clay is contradicted by the fact that in other cases of blindness He did not use it" (Dods). Cf. Mr 8:23. Why he here accommodated himself to current belief we do not know unless it was to encourage the man to believe. He made clay (epoiêsen pêlon). Only use of pêlos, old word for clay, in N.T. in this chapter and Ro 9:21. The kneading of the clay and spittle added another offence against the Sabbath rules of the rabbis." Robertson's New Testament Word Pictures
     
  17. npetreley

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    Sorry, he's wrong about clay - maybe they could use it on the Sabbath, but it was against the law to make it. None of this speculation is very convincing, anyway, especially because Jesus didn't use spittle in other cases of healing. Again, look at the text. The issue is the clay, which added insult to injury to the Pharisee's minds. Not only was Jesus healing on the Sabbath, he made and used clay to do it.

    But if you want to think it's all about spittle, be my guest.
     
  18. webdog

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    To me they are not meaningless. I asked them for a reason, if you can't / won't answer them, that's cool, too, but please don't hijack my thread.
     
    #18 webdog, Oct 29, 2007
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  19. webdog

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    Jesus demanded something from HIM. I agree he had faith.
     
  20. webdog

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    Where did this faith come from that made him whole? Did Jesus use the man's faith...or did He give him the faith to respond?
     

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