Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Jesus Spit

Jesus was willing to get down into the mess of life. He touched lepers, befriended despised people, and hung out with notorious sinners. One of my favorite stories about Jesus entering into the mess is found in John 9. Jesus and the disciples encountered a man who was born blind, and the disciples asked for the reason he was born blind- because of his sins or the sins of his family. Jesus responds that the reason was neither because he sinned nor because his parents sinned; rather, the man was born blind in order to display the glory of God.

John 9:6-7
6 Then he spit on the ground, made mud with the saliva, and smoothed the mud over the blind man's eyes. 7 He told him, "Go and wash in the pool of Siloam" (Siloam means Sent). So the man went and washed, and came back seeing!

It's a great story with amazing theological richness about the ways God displays his glory, but here is the idea that has grabbed my attention more than anything else in this passage:

How many times did Jesus have to spit in the dirt to make that mud?

Jesus Christ, the son of God, bent over the ground spitting and spitting and spitting into the dry, dusty ground of 1st century Palestine to make enough mud to cover this man’s eyes to deliver him from blindness. How long did he spit? How much did he have to spit? What were the people around him thinking? He was willing to lower himself to the ground, hover over the dust, and spit until he had mud to bring new vision to his life.

It’s a picture of a leader who was willing to enter into the mess.


At 6:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We need to examine the circumstances of the two miracles - Mark 8 v22-26 and John 9 v7. Verse 18 of Mark 8 shows the Lord telling the disciples having eyes that do not take in the miracle of the loaves and fishes and ears that do not understand explanations from Himself. and in John 9 the circumstances of the miracle caused the Pharasees to question who did this miracle. When they were told of the dust made mud by spittle they spurned the explanation. Christ's reasons for this were to show in both miracles that HE the creator of the entire universe can do anything in any way and what HE does and says will always be effective and true. Those who do not see this cannot know WHO HE IS. Those who see and hear and understand will know WHO IT IS WHO HAS DONE THESE MIRACLES AND WILL CONSEQUENTLY BECOME BELIEVERS AND HAVE EVERLASTING LIFE. There is no other explanation possible. Those who do not understand this are not connected to the true Spirit of the Living God. An open heart and the calling of God will allow this explanation I have given to cause the realisation that the TRUE GOD was working then and indeed works today if you receive HIM for whom HE is and what He can do. The power of HIS person is available to those who believe. No questions need to be raised you either understand it or you do not. JWM

At 8:40 AM, Blogger Faith_Trust_Hope said...

I use to be confused by this story, but after reading Marilyn Lazlo's book "Mission Possible" I see it in a new, missionary light. In this book she shares how she was a missionary in Papa New Guenea and trying to find the place to connect the gospel with the people's lives. In the midst of translating with the local chiefs they came to this portion of Scripture and the chiefs got very excited. They jumped up and announced to the whole village to meet because they had some important news to share. Once the community was gathered the chiefs announced that this woman who had come with the big book knew the Great Spitter and that the big book was the story about the Great Spitter they were told to wait to hear!

Sometimes I think that there are portions of the Bible that are just better understood in another culture - this message seemed to be for these people!


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