BELIEVING IS SEEING
Sceptical thinkers like Thomas remind us that seeing is believing. Jesus responds to the honest seeker by revealing himself. At other times, we must believe in order to see—believing is seeing.
Into the darkness Jesus appears as a light to the world. While recognizing that more dark days lay ahead, Jesus uses this situation to point to a darkness that is greater than being born blind. There is darkness over the world that can only change with the presence of Jesus.
So long as Jesus remains, performing the work for which He was sent, there remains the inescapable revelation of the character of God.
How do we find Jesus’ character expressed in the methods used?
Jesus spits on some dirt and applies it to a blind man’s eyes. Was this a hint of Creation when God forms the dust into a man and breathes life into him? The Church Father Irenaeus wrote that "the work of God is the fashioning of man" Thus, "that which the artificer, the Word, had omitted to form in the womb, [namely, the blind man's eyes], He then supplied in public, that the works of God might be manifested in him."
How like Jesus to take someone in his or her present state and create a new way of being in the world. The gospel message is one of new creation.
However, the healing did not take place at this time. Instead Jesus sends a blind man on a journey to the Pool of Siloam. This was a significant distance for a blind man to move. This man felt the pasty mud on his eyelids and heard the instruction to go wash.
In this case, the willingness to go was a step to healing. God does not heal everyone in the same way with the same method. As he felt the cool water touch his caked eyes, the miracle of first light came upon him.
The man that had never seen anything but darkness, watched sunlight dancing on the ripples of the water. He saw colour and shape for the first time.
What a beautiful picture of Jesus transforming our vision from darkness to light.