December 2, 2018

“Gifts, John 9”

Passage: John 9
Service Type:
As the hymn, Amazing Grace says, I “was blind but now I see”.
  1. I want to see
““What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him. The blind man said, “Rabbi, I want to see.” “Go,” said Jesus, “your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.” (Mark 10:51–52 NIV11)
“As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”” (John 9:1–2 NIV11)
Tend to look for someone or something to blame. Why do we blame? Is it a desire to avoid responsibility? Are we open-minded?
““Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him. As long as it is day, we must do the works 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.” After saying this, he spit on the ground, made some mud with the saliva, and put it on the man’s eyes. “Go,” he told him, “wash in the Pool of Siloam” (this word means “Sent”). So the man went and washed, and came home seeing.” (John 9:3–7 NIV11)
“When he heard this, Jesus said, “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.”” (John 11:4 NIV11)
Look at world’s challenges as a way to glorify God, rather than run away from them.
“A second time they summoned the man who had been blind. “Give glory to God by telling the truth,” they said. “We know this man is a sinner.” He replied, “Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!” Then they asked him, “What did he do to you? How did he open your eyes?” He answered, “I have told you already and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you want to become his disciples too?” Then they hurled insults at him and said, “You are this fellow’s disciple! We are disciples of Moses! We know that God spoke to Moses, but as for this fellow, we don’t even know where he comes from.”  The man answered, “Now that is remarkable! You don’t know where he comes from, yet he opened my eyes. We know that God does not listen to sinners. He listens to the godly person who does his will. Nobody has ever heard of opening the eyes of a man born blind. If this man were not from God, he could do nothing.” To this they replied, “You were steeped in sin at birth; how dare you lecture us!” And they threw him out.” (John 9:24–34 NIV11)
Do we believe what see, or see what we already believe? Don’t forget the heart of God. Must not get stuck in ‘rules’.
“Jesus heard that they had thrown him out, and when he found him, he said, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?” “Who is he, sir?” the man asked. “Tell me so that I may believe in him.” Jesus said, “You have now seen him; in fact, he is the one speaking with you.” Then the man said, “Lord, I believe,” and he worshiped him. Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind.” Some Pharisees who were with him heard him say this and asked, “What? Are we blind too?” Jesus said, “If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see, your guilt remains.” (John 9:35–41 NIV11)
We are blind emotionally, intellectually and spiritually. The Pharisees could not see the power of God in the miracles because they were too locked in to a fixed mindset. In order to see, we need to first acknowledge our blindness! Can God be glorified?
‘Religion’ opposes love in effect if not in intention.
“And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.” (Ephesians 2:22 NIV11)
1John 4:8 Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.
Heb. 1:3 The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.
John 1:14  The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
Mark 12:29  “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.  30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
John 13:34  “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
Is. 43:4  Since you are precious and honoured in my sight, and because I love you, I will give people in exchange for you, nations in exchange for your life.
1Pet. 4:8  Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.
Gal. 5:6  For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love. Let’s put love at the centre of what we are attempting to build for God’s glory in 2019.
How do we respond to being given a gift?
  1. Refuse it
  2. Hide it
  3. Exchange it
  4. Accept it
“Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters. Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.” (James 1:16–18 NIV11)
What are our most treasured possessions from God?
In what way could I express gratitude for the gifts given to me by God?
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 6:23 NIV11-GK)
“Nor can the gift of God be compared with the result of one man’s sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!” (Romans 5:16–17 NIV11)
  1. Immediately he received his sight
““What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him. The blind man said, “Rabbi, I want to see.” “Go,” said Jesus, “your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.” (Mark 10:51–52 NIV11)
““A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”” (John 13:34–35 NIV11)
“For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.” (1 Corinthians 13:12 NIV11)
“And in their prayers for you their hearts will go out to you, because of the surpassing grace God has given you. Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!” (2 Corinthians 9:14–15 NIV11)
Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community.
Do you have a question about the Bible or the Christian faith? Is it theological, technical, practical? Send us your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email: tvcochrist@gmail.com.
Thanks again for listening. Have a super day.
God bless,
Malcolm

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