13.2 John – A Gift vs. The Gift

I will preface this illustration with the acknowledge that people are suffering from real pains and traumas, sometimes their own and sometimes those that loved ones are undergoing.  I do not in any way mean to be callous or uncaring about those, God is neither and I desire only to reflect Him.  My illustration is meant to provide a different perspective to something that many struggle to comprehend about God.

 

Take a colored pencil and make a single dot.  For illustration purposes, let’s say you make that dot on the floor and we’ll say it is an orange dot.  Now, imagine immediately next to it you make another dot, so close they are touching but of a different color, we’ll say yellow.  Next to it you place another yellow dot, then another and another and another.  You continue until the pencil is exhausted, sharpened down to the nub.  Then you get another pencil and continue, then another, then another until you have filled an entire truck full of the nubs of the pencils.  The line at this point stretches on for miles, farther than the eye can see.  We zoom up into the air (let’s say in a helicopter) and look down on it.

What color is the line?

The message behind this is that, for believers, our entire life on earth is comprised within that first dot.  Our eternal life, the yellow dots, starts on the day we are saved and continues on… for eternity.

No one starts life with a yellow dot.  We are all born into a broken and fallen world.  We all sin.  We all fall short.  We all have trials and tribulations.  We all have aches and pains and handicaps.  We all have things we wish we did not have.  We all get sick.  We all die.

Jesus gave the blind man an amazing gift.  It was a gift, unrequested, undeserved, unearned.  It was not based on any condition other than a single act of obedience.  But, in perspective, when Jesus comes back to the man the second time and reveals Himself as “the Son of Man,” that was a far bigger gift.  Even though the man had been given vision, he still suffered other things in life.  He still had heartache and pain.  He had immediately been kicked out of the temple, the center of everything involving life as a Jew.  The man went on living, but he would have gotten sick like everyone else and he would have died.

We are tempted to look at this story sometimes and say, especially when we have a loved one who is sick or hurting, if Jesus healed that man why doesn’t he help my loved one?  The answer is, that He does.  He gives the same offer he did to the blind man – see me and believe.  We know that those who believe are given the gift of eternal life.  We know that we will be raised up by Jesus, in the same way that He defeated death.

So, when we are tempted to say, “why me, Lord,” might the better question be, “how will God be glorified through this?”  “How might I participate in using this to show God’s attributes to others?”  and “in the perspective of eternity, is my focus on the orange dot or the yellow line?”

For those that do not believe, they see nothing but the orange dot.  But for believers, we become “far-sighted” and can see far beyond the troubles of this world and see the bright light of our risen savior on His throne.

My Answers:

3.
Sin is not left unpunished, travels to 3rd and 4th generation, but God is compassionate.  Jesus said this blindness was not because of sin but that God might be glorified through it

4.
Only God can create sight.  He was blind from birth, so eyes were not developed.  He was blind, not seeing impaired.
1. God might be displayed in a blind man, 2. As long as it is day we must do the works of the Father, 3, Jesus power to create (spit/mud/new eyes).

5.
What is there that He cannot overcome?

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