Then those in front told him to keep quiet, but he kept crying out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” Jesus stopped and commanded that he be brought to him. When he came closer, he asked him, “What do you want me to do for you?” “Lord,” he said, “I want to see.” “Receive your sight.” Jesus told him. “Your faith has saved you.” (CSB)
Next we hear the blind beggar’s interview with Jesus (18:39-42). He had a problem getting to the interview. Was it a lack of transportation or a scheduling conflict? No, people tried to hinder the man from meeting Jesus (18:39).
They may have had various motives, such as self-centeredness or prejudice or disagreement with him. The incident is sort of an acted parable for what happens countless times. If someone starts to become interested in Jesus Christ, other people will try to hinder him or her from meeting Jesus. Many times this hindrance will come from family members: husbands and wives, brothers and sisters, parents and children, cousins and in-laws. People don’t like anything that might interfere with their weekend beer parties and pleasure trips. If someone really meets God through Jesus Christ, they’re sort of ruined for weekend carousing or leisure, which is all most people lust after in some form or the other.
Their opposition did not stop the blind beggar. He understood his desperate condition. He was blind and he wanted to see. And the only One who could help him was now very close. He couldn’t let this opportunity pass by. Jesus might never be this near again. So he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” People don’t like the ruckus that people who really believe that Jesus is the Messiah make. They have various objections: It’s not necessary; it’s not proper; it’s too loud; it’s disruptive, etc. etc. Guess what? The blind man wanted to disrupt the whole parade into Jericho. He had one thing on his mind: He wanted to see and Jesus could make him see. If you get around people who want to see and believe Jesus can do just that for them, you’re going to learn something. They will disrupt your quiet little parades into Jericho.
We need to have our quiet little walks into Jericho (metaphorical for a quiet, orderly church services) disrupted by some blind people who want to see. How much are you willing to see your sweetly ordered, neatly packaged walk through life disrupted? Your answer will reveal how much you want other people to see Jesus or perhaps it might reveal that you yourself have never seen him. When people who have lived years in sin come to trust in Christ as Lord and Savior, their change of world and life view will disrupt their family and their friendships. An old chorus written by Stanton W. Gavitt said, “Things are different now, something happened to me, when I gave my heart to Jesus. Things are different now—I was changed, it must be, when I gave my heart to Him. Things I loved before have passed away, things I love far more have come to stay. Things are different now, something happened to me when I gave my heart to Jesus.”
Jesus talked with the blind man (18:40-41). Jesus took charge of the situation and ordered the blind man to be brought to him. Jesus directed the blind man to his source of hope—Jesus himself. “What do you want me to do for you?” Any mercy coming to the blind man will be coming from Jesus Christ, the Son of David. He did not volunteer to be a medical advisor concerning ways that the blind man could restore his own sight. Jesus was examining the man’s faith in him.
What would you really like Jesus to do for you? What would you like Jesus to do for the church you attend? I would like to see the Lord Jesus giving spiritual sight to those who are spiritually blind, wouldn’t you? The blind man told Jesus that he wanted to see. Notice his respect for Jesus. He called Jesus “Lord”. The Spirit of God was at work (cf. 1 Corinthians 12:3). Has the Spirit of the living God ever worked in your heart (your inner being), so that you cried out, “I want to see you, Lord?”
“Open the eyes of my heart, Lord, open the eyes of my heart; I want to see You; I want to see You: To see You high and lifted up shinin’ in the light of Your glory; pour out Your power and love as we sing holy, holy, holy” (Michael W. Smith).
Grace and peace, David