In the Gospel of John, Chapter 8, we read about an interaction which Jesus had with enemies who thought that He was seeking glory for Himself. They thought that what He was saying seemed “crazy” and that He must be demon-possessed. Jesus replied, “I am not possessed by a demon… but honor My Father and you dishonor Me. I am not seeking glory for Myself… If I glorify Myself, My glory means nothing. My Father, whom you claim as your God, is the One who glorifies Me.” (John 8:49-50, 54) Through His preaching, teaching and miracles, Jesus was showing Himself to be Who He truly was – namely, the Son of God, the Savior of the World, the Messiah promised by God the Father.
The miraculous event recorded in John 9 demonstrates the glory of God through the Person and work of Jesus. Jesus sought out and found a man who was blind from birth. Immediately, the “disciples asked Him, ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?’” (John 9: 2) This was nearly the very same misconception expressed by the Pharisees who, later, insulted the healed man by refusing to listen to him. “You were steeped in sin at birth; how dare you lecture us!” And they threw him out [of the synagogue]. (John 8: 34)
“Neither this man nor his parents sinned, said Jesus, but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in is life. As long as it is day, we must do the work of Him who sent Me. Night is coming, when no one can work. While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” (John 9: 3-5) This happened – NOT as a punishment for sin, but rather so that God would be glorified!
There are those today, too, who falsely believe that God punishes sinners by directly, divinely inflicting them with terrible diseases and maladies. Some say that God punishes homosexuals by giving them AIDS. Another false prophet, who died just this past week, taught his followers that they should protest at the funerals of honorable US military service personnel because God caused them to die as a punishment for the sins of America. Jesus teaches otherwise!
The Bible is clear that “We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way…” (Isaiah 53: 6) and “there is no one righteous, not even one” (Romans 3: 10) “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3: 23)
But God has chosen to show His glory in Christ. God is glorified in the miraculous healing of this man who had been blind since birth; and God is glorified in sending Jesus who took away all of our sin through His sacrificial death on the cross.
Our loving and perfect Heavenly Father may allow us (and, perhaps, even cause us) to experience difficulty, hardship and disease in order to be glorified through us. It may be His plan to perform a miracle in your life! It may be His purpose to grant you grace to withstand such testing of your faith and to give you insight into how He is powerfully, mercifully and graciously working in your faith and life.
We pray faithfully and frequently… “Our Father in Heaven, may Your name be kept holy among us, cause Your kingdom to come among us and may Your good and gracious will be done among us…” In other words, God – Be Glorified in Me! Amen!
See you in church this next weekend!
Blessings in Christ,