Mat 20:29 As Jesus and the disciples left the town of Jericho, a large crowd followed behind. Mat 20:30 Two blind men were sitting beside the road. When they heard that Jesus was coming that way, they began shouting, "Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!" Mat 20:31 "Be quiet!" the crowd yelled at them. But they only shouted louder, "Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!" Mat 20:32 When Jesus heard them, He stopped and called, "What do you want Me to do for you?"Mat 20:33 "Lord," they said, "we want to see!" Mat 20:34 Jesus felt sorry for them and touched their eyes. Instantly they could see! Then they followed Him. [NLT]
Looking beyond what attracts our attention first?
When I first came to this passage my thoughts went directly to the miracle healing that Jesus did. Amazing! He touches the eyes of the blind men and instantly they could see. However, that just didn't seem to be the whole point of this moment. I felt drawn to the idea that there was something more in this passage than a miracle. Jesus wanted me to, ironically, "see" something deeper. So, I have been thinking on this passage for the last week and a half, rolling it around in my mind and talking with Jesus about it, and then He gave me more. This is not just about another miracle that Jesus performs but about the question that He asks.
What and Who is the source of life?
Remember, Jesus said...
John 6:35 Jesus replied, "I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to Me will never be hungry again. Whoever believes in Me will never be thirsty. [NLT]
...and He also said...
John 6:53 Jesus therefore said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, ye have not life in yourselves. [ASV]
...and He finished with this statement so we thick headed people would understand...
John 6:63It is the spirit that giveth life; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I have spoken unto you are spirit, and are life. [ASV] [emphasis supplied]
So, while I was busy looking at the show of the miracle being done (miracles are important, don't get me wrong) I missed the one thing that Jesus said are "spirit, and are life"...His words. Remembering this helped me to focus on what was most important in this passage; His Words.
"What do you want Me to do for you?"
His Words in this case are a question. Now let's apply this moment to ourselves and ask a few questions in light of this being about His Words.
How do I come to Jesus?
The blind men came to him in some interesting and specific ways.
- They heard that He was coming; probably they had heard the rumors that He might be the Messiah, and they sought Him out by raising their voices higher than the din of the crowd.
- They ignored the complaints of the "world" to be quiet and stop disrupting things.
- They called out to Him.
- They addressed Him with a statement that showed they understood who He was, "Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!" and it showed their recognition of a need for mercy.
So, how do I come to Jesus? Do I come offering Him something? Do I come saying,
"Look, I really want eternal life, and I hear that I need to change my life to get it. I hear that Your the one that can help me to clean up my act so I can get this eternal life. How 'bout You and I work together to fix me? I'll give up my bad habits, go to church every week and give to charity so You can save me"
Or, do I come to Him like the blind men?
"Lord God, Creator of the Universe and the only One that is Good. Have mercy on me a sinner in need of Your mercy. I recognize that I can in no way fix my own "blindness" and I recognize that You have done it for me already. Teach me to see."
How did Jesus respond to their recognition of Him?
"What do you want Me to do for you?" He responds with a question. Many things about Jesus are shown in this one short statement.
- He is responding to their plea.
- He wants them to tell Him what they want. (He must have known but He wants, maybe needs, them to say it.)
- He gives mercy when it is asked for.
- His mercy can take the form of healing.
- He also ignores the "world" to show His mercy.
- He heals the sick.
What can we conclude from this moment in Jesus' life?
It is our belief and faith in Jesus and His ability to heal us that He responds to directly. The two blind men called Him by His name and title. They addressed Him and asked for His mercy and it was at that moment that Jesus asked them what they wanted. How do we come to Jesus? Do we come in belief of His power and His ability to give us what we want? Or do we deny His power by our very actions; never stepping out above the din of the world. Never taking that step of faith and loudly proclaiming ...
"LORD, SON OF DAVID, HAVE MERCY ON US!"
Lord in Heaven and Earth, this is my cry today. Have mercy on me! You alone are able. Have mercy and heal my son. This is what I want. Not my will Lord, but Your Will. Amen.