Nobody has ever heard of opening the eyes of a man born blind. John 9:32
It seems people had been cured of blindness which was caused by disease but not those who were born blind. The man who was healed appears to be a “local,” as it wasn’t long until his parents were summoned before the Pharisees to confirm the healing. Yet even in the face of overwhelming evidence, the Pharisees wouldn’t believe.
Believing the man had been healed meant the Pharisees would have to change their minds about Jesus. Believing in Jesus would mean the Pharisees’ whole social structure would change. They would no longer be able to oppress the poor, no longer gain approval for their shallow devotion, no longer put on a show of religiosity, no longer gain financial advantage over others by charging exorbitant prices for temple sacrifices, and no longer nullify God’s laws by their own traditions.
It would have been a huge reversal for the Pharisees to start acting for the common good rather than lining their own pockets with fame and fortune. It’s a reversal that still needs to happen today. On the world’s stage, the poor are often oppressed and financially disadvantaged by those in power seeking fame and fortune. It’s a challenge, as followers of Jesus, to find ways to ensure the common good of all.
The Pharisees realized that Jesus wasn’t just about healing a few sick people. Jesus came to challenge their lifestyle. He came to rearrange their priorities, to give them compassion for the poor. Yet they were unwilling to change.
May we be open not only to Jesus’ healing ways but also to his challenges to our priorities, to our lifestyles, and to the concerns of his heart.John's Gospel