Born That The Works Of God Should Be Made Manifest
“And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth.
2 And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind?
3 Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.” John 9:1-3
For some reason this thought has grabbed a hold of me as of late. Perhaps it’s because of the spiritually devoid climate of our times. It seems that people tend to want to excuse their actions, attitudes, conduct, propensities because … they were “born” that way.
Humanly speaking that line of logic does have some validity to it.
However … a person cannot excuse a sinful lifestyle because they want to claim an exception clause: I was born that way.
Usually this comes up when a person is confronted with the idea of personal responsibility for sin before a holy God. Once the notion of sin is introduced into the conversation, along with personal accountability to God, the trump card of “I was born that way” comes into play.
Also, now, in our times, God is the culprit. “He’s the One that made me this way, therefore I’m good with God.” So now we have churches springing up that cater to just about every vice and sin. It’s appealing for sure; but, God doesn’t offer a get out of jail (Hell) card. Each person is responsible before God, period.
I think part of the problem is that both sides of the argument are correct. The lost person says he was born that way while the believer says no, you’ve made a choice. Could it be that both are correct? I think so.
Each person is born a sinner and each person chooses to sin. Each of us sin in our own different peculiar ways. We don’t all sin the same way; we all sin differently from others. BUT, we all are born sinners who (thanks to our depraved ancestors before us) sin in one fashion or another. The sins of the father are passed down to the following generation. In that sense, perhaps, we can say God has “made” us the way we are. I hope that doesn’t sound too heretical.
I really like this blind fellow in our story. He doesn’t blame God for being born the way he was born. He was a born a sinner with the added affliction of blindness. Though this man was blind, he still sinned before God. He’s in need of salvation along with his healing.
Simply put, it was God’s will for this sinner to be born blind. He was really blind two ways: physically and spiritually. But God had a purpose in it all.
For as many years as this man was old, he had no idea that a moment in time would come that would change him in the here-and-now and for all eternity. And, I’d like to suggest that it was this specific infirmity that enabled him to “see” his need for Yeshua. It was the very thing that the Saviour used to draw this man to Himself for physical and spiritual healing.
We all are born with our own infirmities/sins. However, we need to understand and realize that our sin is the very thing that God allowed to impact us in order for us to see our need for salvation.
For me, it was the very personal awareness of my sins that prepared my heart to respond to the Gospel message of forgiveness of sins. I didn’t receive any physical deliverance such as the blind man did, but I know I’d have been dead a long time ago if God hadn’t saved me.
If man can whitewash away sin from the existence of man’s personal responsibility before God, then why, pray tell, did Yeshua have to come? If man has no sin, he’s in no need of salvation. If man is in no need of salvation then there’s no need for a Saviour. And, if there’s no need of a Saviour then what is the big deal about Jesus? Why did He come? Why did He die? Why did He rise again?
When presenting the Messiah to unsaved folks, we must never back down from the sin equation. If we sugar coat sin we dilute the power of the message of salvation through the shed blood of Yeshua. The reality of sin and the eternal consequences are not open for debate. Yeshua settled it once and for all on the Tree.
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” Romans 3:23
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:23
“But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
“In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.” 1 John 4:9
God didn’t create us as individuals to wallow in a life of sin only to end up dead and in Hell. He made us according to His will so that our lives will redound to His glory. And that happens in its fullness when a person is made anew in Yeshua.
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” II Corinthians 5:17
It’s then that we can truly say: He made me this way.
PS: Can you imagine the blind man saying to Yeshua’s offer to heal him: No thank you … I was born that way?
Something to think about.