2017-03-05
Pastor Jonathan Falwell

Memory Verse: John 9:39 NKJV
And Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, that those who do not see may see, and that those who see may be made blind.”

Today, I’d like to spend some time talking about the importance of a story. How a story can change everything in the eyes of others. How an honest story of God’s love and redemption can change the world.  And, one of the greatest stories to emphasize this truth is found in John 9.

John 9:1-27 NLT
1 As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man who had been blind from birth. 2 “Rabbi,” his disciples asked him, “why was this man born blind? Was it because of his own sins or his parents’ sins?” 3 “It was not because of his sins or his parents’ sins,” Jesus answered. “This happened so the power of God could be seen in him. 4 We must quickly carry out the tasks assigned us by the one who sent us. The night is coming, and then no one can work. 5 But while I am here in the world, I am the light of the world.” 6 Then he spit on the ground, made mud with the saliva, and spread the mud over the blind man’s eyes. 7 He told him, “Go wash yourself in the pool of Siloam” (Siloam means “sent”). So the man went and washed and came back seeing! 8 His neighbors and others who knew him as a blind beggar asked each other, “Isn’t this the man who used to sit and beg?” 9 Some said he was, and others said, “No, he just looks like him!” But the beggar kept saying, “Yes, I am the same one!” 10 They asked, “Who healed you? What happened?” 11 He told them, “The man they call Jesus made mud and spread it over my eyes and told me, ‘Go to the pool of Siloam and wash yourself.’ So I went and washed, and now I can see!” 12 “Where is he now?” they asked. “I don’t know,” he replied. 13 Then they took the man who had been blind to the Pharisees, 14 because it was on the Sabbath that Jesus had made the mud and healed him. 15 The Pharisees asked the man all about it. So he told them, “He put the mud over my eyes, and when I washed it away, I could see!” 16 Some of the Pharisees said, “This man Jesus is not from God, for he is working on the Sabbath.” Others said, “But how could an ordinary sinner do such miraculous signs?” So there was a deep division of opinion among them. 17 Then the Pharisees again questioned the man who had been blind and demanded, “What’s your opinion about this man who healed you?” The man replied, “I think he must be a prophet.” 18 The Jewish leaders still refused to believe the man had been blind and could now see, so they called in his parents. 19 They asked them, “Is this your son? Was he born blind? If so, how can he now see?” 20 His parents replied, “We know this is our son and that he was born blind, 21 but we don’t know how he can see or who healed him. Ask him. He is old enough to speak for himself.” 22 His parents said this because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders, who had announced that anyone saying Jesus was the Messiah would be expelled from the synagogue. 23 That’s why they said, “He is old enough. Ask him.” 24 So for the second time they called in the man who had been blind and told him, “God should get the glory for this, because we know this man Jesus is a sinner.” 25 “I don’t know whether he is a sinner,” the man replied. “But I know this: I was blind, and now I can see!” 26 “But what did he do?” they asked. “How did he heal you?” 27 “Look!” the man exclaimed. “I told you once. Didn’t you listen? Why do you want to hear it again? Do you want to become his disciples, too?”

1. The Beginning of a Story

vs 7 He told him, “Go wash yourself in the pool of Siloam” (Siloam means “sent”). So the man went and washed and came back seeing!

– Story begins with Jesus seeing a man who had always been blind

– It is also a story that begins in Christians judging someone

– But Jesus took what the world sees as a sinful, punished man and turns it into the miraculous

– This took belief and action on the part of the man

2. The Power of a Story

vs 8 His neighbors and others who knew him as a blind beggar asked each other, “Isn’t this the man who used to sit and beg?” 9 Some said he was, and others said, “No, he just looks like him!” But the beggar kept saying, “Yes, I am the same one!”

– Instantly the man wanted everyone to know about this miracle

– He had spent his entire life blind, and now he sees, and couldn’t stop sharing.

– This story turned the community upside down

3. The Faith of a Storyteller

vs 10 They asked, “Who healed you? What happened?” 11 He told them, “The man they call Jesus made mud and spread it over my eyes and told me, ‘Go to the pool of Siloam and wash yourself.’ So I went and washed, and now I can see!”

– There was no fear to share this story, no worry over being ridiculed

– The formerly blind man was now a spokesman for Jesus, who was not there

– This man had absolute faith in what had happened because he could see

4. The Courage of a Storyteller

vs 15 The Pharisees asked the man all about it. So he told them, “He put the mud over my eyes, and when I washed it away, I could see!”

vs 25 “I don’t know whether he is a sinner,” the man replied. “But I know this: I was blind, and now I can see!”

vs 26 “But what did he do?” they asked. “How did he heal you?” 27 “Look!” the man exclaimed. “I told you once. Didn’t you listen? Why do you want to hear it again? Do you want to become his disciples, too?”

– His testimony took great courage. His own parents were afraid (vss 18-20)

– Anyone who acknowledged Christ would be put out of the synagogue.

– Yet the man continued to tell the same story…I once was blind but now I see

– The man not only continued to share the story, he pushed back against the Pharisees. (vss 30-34) He was even thrown out for it, yet he stood and believed. (vs 35)

5. The Importance of a Storyteller

vs 4 We must quickly carry out the tasks assigned us by the one who sent us. The night is coming, and then no one can work.

– Jesus made it clear, time is short, we must share our stories NOW!

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