“Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind from birth. And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him. I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” When He had said these things, He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. And He said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which is translated, Sent). So he went and washed, and came back seeing. Therefore the neighbors and those who previously had seen that he was blind said, “Is not this he who sat and begged?” Some said, “This is he.” Others said, “He is like him.” He said, “I am he.” Therefore they said to him, “How were your eyes opened?” He answered and said, “A Man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes and said to me, ‘Go to the pool of Siloam and wash.’ So I went and washed, and I received sight.” Then they said to him, “Where is He?” He said, “I do not know.”
God’s Church is where the righteous who have received the remission of sins are gathered, and God is pleased with this Church and cares deeply about it. With His eyes of grace, God always watches over His Church on this planet earth. The will of God and His heart are manifested in His Church. As we are abiding in this Church, God therefore hears our prayers and answers our requests. As you know, a mother’s eyes are always set on her toddler, and the eyes of a groom are always set on his bride. Likewise, as the Father of the righteous people and our Groom, it is only a matter of course for God to also love us His children and devote His attention to His Church, which is His bride.
Therefore, it is in none other than in God’s Church that we can see for ourselves how pleased God is when we preach the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and how He works in our lives. When seen through the eyes of man, it may seem as though the Church is difficult to run and it has little power to spread the gospel. However, despite this, God has blessed His Church to prosper, and by strengthening the souls that are gathered there, God continues to produce sturdy workers who can carry out His work. We should never forget the fact that God is always rejoiced by His Church and He blesses it all the time.
Why Are We Spiritually Blind?
Today’s Scripture passage revolves around a visually disabled man. As you know, visually disabled people refer to the blind who can’t see. For various causes, their eyes have no sight and they can’t see anything. For those of us who have no vision problem, we can’t even begin to imagine just how much suffering and hardship they go through.
But did you know that there actually are other visually disabled people in this world who are even more miserable than them? They are none other than the spiritually blind. For those who are physically blind, the only problem is that they can’t see physical objects, but for those who are spiritually blind, their problem is on a completely different dimension. Many people today are living as spiritually blind people. In the present world, there are far too many people whose lives are guided by their own conviction, rather than the faith that’s approved by God. Although such people profess to believe in God through the “religionized” Christianity, since they are still sinners with a sinful heart and they follow their own plans rather than the will of God, they may be classified as spiritually blind people. We call them “Christian sinners.” These people cannot see themselves straight before the Word of God. Even as they hear and read the Word of God, they are completely oblivious to the will of God manifested in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and so they still remain sinners and continue to live in this sinful state.
No matter how often we warn them that they will go to hell if they have sin, it’s all useless. On the contrary, they retort by saying, “I am not blind. Since I believe in Jesus, I’ve already been remitted from the original sin that I was born into, and now all that I need is to just give prayers of repentance to be remitted from my personal sins. So why will I ever end up in hell, when I am such a good Christian?” Like this, there are so many spiritually blind people on this earth who are completely ignorant of the righteousness of God and filled with spiritual arrogance instead.
In today’s Scripture passage, Jesus met a man who was blind from birth. The disciples then asked Him, “Because of whose sin did this man become blind? Is it because of his sin, or his parents’ sin?” Jesus then answered, “No, it’s because of neither his parents’ sin nor his, but to reveal God’s work. He was born blind so that the work of God would be manifested.”
God often reveals His will through parables and symbols in His Word of the Scriptures. The blind man in this passage also draws an analogy to the spiritually blind people rather than the physically blind. In other words, this passage explains why God allowed us humans to be born into spiritual blindness. Jesus said here that it’s not because of our sins that we became blind. Why, then, did we have to be born on this earth with spiritual blindness? It was to make us be born again through the gospel of the water and the Spirit that God gave us. God wanted to bestow His grace of salvation on us. He allowed us to be born with spiritual blindness so that we would be born again through the gospel of the water and the Spirit; so that God may save us and open our spiritual eyes; and so that His righteousness may be revealed to us.
The spiritually blind are those who, trapped in sin, cannot realize the gospel Truth of the water and the Spirit even when they hear the Word of God. All of us humans were born as such blind people. God had allowed us to be born temporarily blind because He wanted to complete the amazing work of delivering such people from sin through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. In other words, God had permitted us to be born spiritually blind in order to fulfill His will to make us His sinless people. Do you grasp this will of God?
The Lord said, “I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” As we have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, our hearts are no longer in the darkness of the night but under the broad daylight. That’s because the Spirit of the Lord dwells in our hearts. It’s because once the Lord ascended to Heaven, He gave the Holy Spirit to the hearts of the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Therefore, we must carry out God’s work until the day the Lord returns to this earth and lifts us up to the sky. Once we the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit are lifted up by the Lord, the night will come when we will not be able to work even if we wanted to work. Like this, the Lord wants us to preach the gospel while it is permitted by Him, while there still are those who will receive the remission of sins.
It’s written, “When He had said these things, He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. And He said to him, ‘Go, wash in the pool of Siloam’ (which is translated, Sent). So he went and washed, and came back seeing” (John 9:6-7). Referring to the blind man, our Lord had said, “This man is blind so that the work of God would be revealed.” He then spat on the ground, made clay with the saliva, anointed the blind man’s eyes, and said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam.”
The Bible writes that when the blind man went to the pool of Siloam and washed his eyes as told, he returned with his eyes opened. When looked from man’s perspective, it makes no sense at all to spit on the ground, make clay with the saliva, and put it on the blind man’s eyes to open his eyes. If we had done this in this time and age, spitting on the ground, making clay with the saliva, putting it on some blind person’s eyes, and telling him to go to the pool of Siloam and wash himself, not only would no one listen to us, but no one would return with his eyes opened either. Like this, there are many parts in the Word of God that do not make any sense at all when we consider it according to our own human logic.
However, the Word of God is always beyond the limits of what we humans can think. The Bible says that to open the blind man’s eyes, our Lord spit on the ground, made clay with the saliva, and put it on his eyes. As the ground refers to the human heart in the Bible, that Jesus spat on the ground means that man’s heart is spiritually accursed. We spit at someone so worthless and evil that we can’t stand him, to show our spite. Like this, that Jesus spat on the ground means that we humans were cursed. Since everyone is born spiritually blind, everyone’s spirit is in a sinful state, and none other than this is man’s accursed state. This means that because everyone is born with sin, and because everyone is therefore cursed by God spiritually, unless the Lord does something for us, man cannot help but remain in his accursed state until his death.
To help your understanding, let us turn to Matthew 15:7-20 here: “‘Hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy about you, saying: “These people draw near to Me with their mouth, And honor Me with their lips, But their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.”’ When He had called the multitude to Himself, He said to them, ‘Hear and understand: Not what goes into the mouth defiles a man; but what comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man.’ Then His disciples came and said to Him, ‘Do You know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this saying?’ But He answered and said, ‘Every plant which My heavenly Father has not planted will be uprooted. Let them alone. They are blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind leads the blind, both will fall into a ditch.” Then Peter answered and said to Him, ‘Explain this parable to us.’ So Jesus said, ‘Are you also still without understanding? Do you not yet understand that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and is eliminated? But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and they defile a man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies. These are the things which defile a man, but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile a man.’”
Here the Lord is explaining what kinds of sins we have in our hearts, and with what kinds of sins everyone is born. Rooted in our hearts are evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, and blasphemies, and these things that proceed out of the human heart is what defiles mankind. The Lord is saying here that everyone is born with such sins, and this is precisely why man is born on this earth in an accursed state. The reason why Jesus Christ spat on the ground, made clay with the saliva, and put it on the eyes of the blind man was to make us realize that by our fundamental human nature, whatever is in our hearts is all sinful, and because of these sins we are destined to be spiritually cursed. It was to make the blind man realize his accursed sins in his heart that Jesus had put the clay made with the saliva on his eyes. This passage also points out none other than our own imperfect spiritual state.
By What Means Does the Lord Point out Our Sins?
It’s the very Word of God that points out our sins through the Law. Unless we look at ourselves through the Word of the Law of God, we can never realize our basic nature that is full of sins. If it were not for the Law, we would remain completely oblivious to the fact that we are destined to be cursed for our sins, and that we will be destroyed in the end. If we were to evaluate ourselves based on the ethical standard of the world, many of us would say, “What’s so evil about me? If there is anyone as virtuous as I am, let him step forward!” However, if we truly see ourselves as reflected by the righteous Word of God, then we would see that we are indeed evil all the time. All that the Lord wants from us is to recognize that nothing but “evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, and blasphemies” come out of our hearts. As such depraved sinners, we have nothing to say even if we were cursed and cast into hell for these sins. There is no one good in this world but only God. When we look into our hearts based on the written Word of the Law, we cannot help but admit that all of us truly deserve to be cast into hell.
That everyone is born in this world with sin means that everyone is born in the state of spiritual death. However, people are born without realizing this truth, and many of them live in this world ignoring it. A spiritually blind person does not realize that his heart is terminally ill. Such people are dying a slow death, not even realizing that they are blind, as the candle light flickers in the wind only to be extinguished in the end. Therefore, as all the people in this world are destined to be destroyed from the birth, and yet they do not actually realize it, they may be said to be spiritually blind walking on the way of death.
You Must Realize That Those Who Have Not Received the Remission of Sins Do Not Actually Realize That They Are Heading to Hell
Not realizing that they are doomed to destruction by God’s just judgment, such people only try to do good deeds or rely on one of man-made religions while living on this earth. Before you and I received the remission of sins, we had also not known our fundamental selves and only tried to live virtuously under all kinds of religions. However, there is one big problem with all this effort that is made outside of God: Everyone’s heart is fundamentally sinful, but no one actually realizes this. In other words, human beings live and die without even realizing that they themselves are a brood of sin born with a heart full of murderous, decadent, jealous, foolish, and lying desires.
To such ignorant and foolish people like us, God is saying through the account of the blind man in today’s Scripture passage, “You are destined to hell and destruction.” Given the fact that everyone has such a sinful heart, it’s nothing more than a lie to claim that anyone can go to Heaven if he does good deeds. God made it clear that “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). What about us then? How were we before we were born again? Did we know that we were destined to be destroyed? No, we had no idea! In those days, we didn’t even know that we were sinful, nor did we know that we would be destroyed for these sins, and that’s why we only tried to live virtuously on ethical grounds. Not knowing the Truth, we were doomed to expend our time and effort in a useless endeavor only to be cast into hell in the end. Like a bruised reed, we were accursed beings destined to die without even realizing it.
However, God said, “A bruised reed He will not break,
And smoking flax He will not quench,
He will bring forth justice for truth” (Isaiah 42:3). Our Lord did not want man’s life and soul to die; far from it, He was the God of love who wanted to light up the smoking flax of life for everyone. Therefore, realizing that we ourselves are destined to be destroyed, we must look at the Word of God through the eyes of faith. We must be freed from our spiritual blindness and open our eyes of faith. Only then can God’s brilliant flame of life be set ablaze in our hearts that are dripping in sin by nature.
The Lord said in Isaiah 42:7-8, “To open blind eyes, To bring out prisoners from the prison, Those who sit in darkness from the prison house. I am the LORD, that is My name; And My glory I will not give to another, Nor My praise to carved images.”
And the deaf who have ears.” Referring to us humans, the Lord is saying here that we are blind even though we have eyes, and we are deaf even though we have ears. The blind, the deaf, the smoking flax, and the bruised reed mentioned in the Bible all refer to sinners. In other words, the Lord is saying in these passages that every human being is fundamentally born with accursed sins. And just as He said, each and every one of us was indeed born with a sinful heart. Unless we received the remission of sins from God by faith, we were all destined to end up in hell. However, the Lord blessed sinners to realize their true selves. By spitting on the ground, making clay out of the saliva, and putting it on the eyes of the blind, He opened their eyes.
My fellow believers, take a look at your own heart and see how it is reflected on the Word of Truth. You will then realize your fundamental nature that constantly stirs up filthy and depraved desires in your heart. As human beings, our hearts sometimes harbor lustful desires, and other times murderous thoughts, arrogant minds, and foolish desires as well. If we were to be judged for all these things, it’s unmistakably clear that we would all deserve to be cast into hell. If our God were to intervene and judge us for all the sins that arise in our hearts, would we go to hell or enter Heaven? We can’t help but admit our helpless condition inevitably destined to hell.
However, to Us Who Were Born with a Sinful Heart, God Has Given the Light of Salvation
As the Lord came to this earth and saved us through the gospel of the water and the Spirit, if we believe in this wholeheartedly, then we will not go to hell. We will be saved by faith. What would have happened to us if our Lord had not saved us from sin out of His compassion? It gives me shudders just to think about it. The Lord spat on the ground, made clay with the saliva; and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. And He told him to wash himself at the pool of Siloam. Like this, it is by realizing our sins and believing in the Lord’s gospel of the water and the Spirit that we can open our spiritual eyes.
My fellow believers, had God not blotted out our sins once and for all with His Word, then we would all have had to be cast into hell. Yet our Lord came to this earth for such people like us, saved us through the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and opened our eyes of faith. We should all be thankful for this. If we have received the remission of sins to be spared from our fate that had destined us to destruction for our sins, this means that our Lord has led us to the way of love and truth. We must therefore believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit that has led us to the Truth of salvation. If our Lord has delivered us through the gospel of the water and the Spirit even though we all deserved to be condemned to destruction for our sins, all of us ought to thank Him sincerely by faith and follow the right guidance of the Lord.
It is not out of luck that those of us abiding in God’s Church have received the remission of sins. It’s because God has blessed us with the gospel of the water and the Spirit; it’s because we wholeheartedly believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit with which God has remitted away all our sins; and it’s because we have been saved from them. Therefore, we should thank God from the depth of our hearts for His salvation, for making it possible for us to receive the remission of sins through the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and for this blessed method of salvation.
We Have Been Washed from Sin through the Water of the Baptism That the Lord Received
Our Lord said in John 3:5, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.” In today’s Scripture passage, the Lord said to the blind man to go to the pool of Siloam and wash his eyes there. Would there have been water in this pool of Siloam? Of course there was water there. When the blind man obeyed the Lord’s Word and washed the clay off his eyes with this water, his eyes were miraculously opened and he saw the light. Let me reiterate here once again that the blind man in this passage does not just refer to those who are physically blind. Rather, our Lord is saying to all those who are spiritually blind—that is, sinners—to wash away all their sins with the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
Having descended from the throne of Heaven, our Lord was baptized by John the Baptist. When the Lord said to the blind man, “Go, and wash in the pool of Siloam,” the blind man washed his eyes by faith and he gained his physical sight. This was all because Jesus Christ had freed mankind from all sins and curses when He was baptized by John the Baptist. Although around 2,000 years have passed by since then, even at this very moment, we have the blessing to see a new dominion of God by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, just like this blind man. When our Lord came to this earth incarnated in the flesh of man, He bore all our sins by receiving baptism on His own body. By thus taking away all our sins and being crucified to death, He has saved us. In this way, our Lord has enabled all of us who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit to be born again. Through His baptism, Jesus took away all our sins, including all the sins that are in our hearts and all the sins that we commit with our bodies, and He has thereby opened the eyes of every spiritually blind person.
Even though we were all inevitably destined to be destroyed because of our inherent sins, our Lord has made it possible for us not to be destroyed for these sins, for He loves us all. Jesus Christ has saved us from all our sins through the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and in doing so He has enabled us to see the Kingdom of God. He has delivered us the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit from destruction and the power of the darkness, and moved us to the Kingdom of God. It is by thus believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit given by Jesus Christ that our spiritual eyes were opened and we could become God’s true children.
It’s written in today’s Scripture passage, “Some said, ‘This is he.’ Others said, ‘He is like him.’ He said, ‘I am he.’ Therefore they said to him, ‘How were your eyes opened?’ He answered and said, ‘A Man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes and said to me, “Go to the pool of Siloam and wash.” So I went and washed, and I received sight’” (John 9:9-11). This blind man had probably been a beggar, surviving on the charities of others. His clothes would no doubt have been dirty rags. However, once his eyes were opened by the Lord’s blessing, he would have thrown away his filthy rags and changed into new, clean clothes. So those who didn’t recognize him as a changed man came to him and asked him, “Are you that man who used to be blind?” And the blind man said yes. The people then said to him, “Then tell us how your eyes were really opened,” to which the man said, “A Man called Jesus spat on the ground, made clay out of saliva, put it on my eyes, and told me to go to the pool of Siloam and wash in there. So I did as I was told, and my eyes were opened.” When the people asked him where Jesus was, he said that he didn’t know. The reason why they asked him for the whereabouts of Jesus is because the day when the blind man’s eyes were opened was none other than the Sabbath Day. As the man who had been blind said that he didn’t know where Jesus was, the people took him to the Pharisees.
The Pharisees in those days were strict adherents of the tradition of the Law. To keep the Sabbath Day of the Old Testament, they prepared all their food on Friday, the day before the Sabbath. They even fed their livestock beforehand on Friday rather than on the Sabbath. They lived in strict adherence to the statutes of the Law, not even traveling too far on the Sabbath Day.
It’s written in today’s Scripture passage, “Now it was a Sabbath when Jesus made the clay and opened his eyes. Then the Pharisees also asked him again how he had received his sight. He said to them, ‘He put clay on my eyes, and I washed, and I see.’ Therefore some of the Pharisees said, ‘This Man is not from God, because He does not keep the Sabbath.’ Others said, ‘How can a man who is a sinner do such signs?’ And there was a division among them. They said to the blind man again, ‘What do you say about Him because He opened your eyes?’ He said, ‘He is a prophet’” (John 9:14-17).
This passage depicts the scene where the man who had been blind was interrogated by the Pharisees after receiving the remission of sins from Jesus. The Pharisees thought that since Jesus didn’t keep the Sabbath, a day when no one was supposed to do anything, He was not from God, and since such a Man performed a miracle, He should be arrested. That’s why they were asking the blind man where Jesus was. Today, in this age and time, some religionists also denounce the righteous in a similar fashion, saying, “The Bible says that there is no one just, not even one. So how can you be a righteous person? You are a heretic!” Like these religionists, the Pharisees who insisted only on the Law were interrogating the formerly blind man who had now received the remission of sins.
My fellow believers, was it wrong for Jesus to open the eyes of the blind man on the Sabbath, when no one was supposed to do anything? No, that’s not true. Although Jesus was born on this earth, He was the only One who was fundamentally sinless. Therefore, regardless of whether or not it was the Sabbath Day when the Lord opened the eyes of the blind man, this was still a good work and there was absolutely nothing wrong with it. Is it right to impose rules even on good deeds, saying, “You can’t do that since today is Saturday, but you can do it tomorrow as it is the Lord’s Day”? If someone is drowning, is it right to say, “I can’t save you now since today is the Sabbath Day, but if you are still alive tomorrow, I’ll save you then”? That’s why our Jesus said, “If one of your own herd falls into a ditch, wouldn’t you try to save it? This man was blind, and so isn’t it more important to open his eyes than keeping the Sabbath Day? Isn’t is more imperative to enable people to receive the spiritual remission of sins?” Regardless of whether it was the Sabbath Day or not, it was right to open the blind man’s eyes. Yet despite this, the Pharisees had failed to realize the love of God hidden in the Law, and they were instead leading their lives of faith foolishly bound by the letters of the Law.
My fellow believers, just as the formerly blind man was persecuted by the Pharisees, so is it inevitable for us to also face persecution after we receive the remission of sins. Some people say to us, “How dare you claim to have received the remission of sins? Tell me about this gospel of the water and the Spirit. The Book of Romans says that there is no one just, not even one. So how can you say that you are a righteous person whose sins have disappeared by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit? You surely are a heretic. Those who preach the gospel of the water and the Spirit are not orthodox Christians, but they are heterodox. They are heretics. What kind of church is this?”
Nowadays, there are many Christians throughout the world who have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit through our books. But I’ve heard that after receiving the remission of sins, they are often summoned by their pastors and interrogated as though they were facing a religious trial.
Do you know by whom Peter and the other disciples of Jesus were arrested for preaching the gospel of the water and the Spirit? They were dragged to and interrogated by none other than the chief priests, who can be described as the leaders of Christianity in today’s term. Do you then know to whom you’ll be dragged when you receive the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit? You will be dragged to the very pastors and elders who had been guiding your religious life and interrogated by them as though you were put on a religious trial. This will happen inevitably once you receive the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. However, just as the formerly blind man who was blessed by the Lord to open his spiritual eyes was wiser than the Pharisees who were adhering only to the Law, you should realize that those of us who have received the remission of sins through the gospel of the water and the Spirit are also wiser than our persecutors.
My fellow believers, before we received the remission of sins, we had to live as sinners always even though we believed in Jesus. It was not uncommon for you and I to come to church and offer prayers of repentance in tears to try to be remitted from our sins. At first, we felt good after praying in tears thinking of the blood that Jesus shed on the Cross, as we felt like our hearts were refreshed and cleansed, but when we kept offering such prayers of repentance repeatedly, our tears soon dried up. So when we couldn’t shed any more tears, we even tried to think of all kinds of tragic things to wring out false tears. We did this because, in those days, we had foolishly thought that only then those around us would approve us as good Christians. However, my fellow believers, this was a religious trap set by Satan to drag our souls to hell. You must realize that such false tears and false prayers of repentance are nothing more than Satan’s deception, designed to lead the unredeemed to have false faith and ultimately drag them to hell.
To help your understanding, let’s turn to the Bible here. It’s written in John 9:18-23: “But the Jews did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind and received his sight, until they called the parents of him who had received his sight. And they asked them, saying, ‘Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then does he now see?’ His parents answered them and said, ‘We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind; but by what means he now sees we do not know, or who opened his eyes we do not know. He is of age; ask him. He will speak for himself.’ His parents said these things because they feared the Jews, for the Jews had agreed already that if anyone confessed that He was Christ, he would be put out of the synagogue. Therefore his parents said, ‘He is of age; ask him.’”
My fellow believers, you and I have opened our eyes of faith by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Although we had been spiritually blind before, our eyes of faith have now been opened wide. In other words, we have now become righteous people, even though we had been sinners ignorant of the gospel of the water and the Spirit. However, if you say in the Christian community where you belong, “I am a righteous person, for I have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit,” then you will be excommunicated by those who still have not received the remission of sins.
It is for this very reason that the parents of the blind man said, “He is indeed our son. It’s true that he was a beggar, and it’s also true that he was blind. And it’s also true that our son can now see. While all these are true, we do not know Jesus.” These parents knew already that if they admitted to know Jesus Christ, they would be excommunicated from Judaism. As they had not received the remission of sins yet, they were afraid of being excommunicated, and that’s why they said that they didn’t know Jesus.
Let’s turn to today’s Scripture passage again and see John 9:23-25: “Therefore his parents said, ‘He is of age; ask him.’ So they again called the man who was blind, and said to him, ‘Give God the glory! We know that this Man is a sinner.’ He answered and said, ‘Whether He is a sinner or not I do not know. One thing I know: that though I was blind, now I see.’”
The Pharisees at that time were trying to paint Jesus as a sinner based on their own doctrines. Gripped by their own legalistic conventional understanding, they interrogated the formerly blind man, saying, “How could Jesus Christ have taken away all the sins that we commit every day?” Such acts of the Pharisees were blaspheming the glory of Jesus. It was akin to a sinner blaspheming the glory of the redeemed. Without even realizing it themselves, they were challenge the very God in whom they believed.
Like these Pharisees, many Christian sinners in the world try to suppress those who have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. If this Church that God blessed were not here, then you and I would have been oppressed inevitably, and we would have to once again lead a torturous religious life among sinners. However, you must realize that there is no truth that can bring salvation to you other than to believe that Jesus Christ took upon all your sins through His baptism and blotted them all out with the blood of the Cross. Jesus has blotted out all our sins once and for all with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and so if we deny this Savior, where would we attain salvation? To repeat, there is no other way to be saved from sin but to believe in Jesus Christ’s gospel of the water and the Spirit.
Therefore, my fellow believers, as those who have received the remission of sins, we must fight the spiritual battle of faith against the modern version of the Pharisees. Is it wrong to receive the remission of sins by believing in Jesus who came by the gospel of the water and the Spirit? Was it wrong for Jesus to open the eyes of the blind man on the Sabbath? Whether that day was the Sabbath Day or not is not what’s important. Is it more important for you to keep the Sabbath or to receive the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit? The Lord said that the Sabbath was established for man. Our Lord said that He is the Master of the Sabbath. He made it clear that it’s not the Sabbath Day that’s important, but what’s important is to believe that Jesus Christ is the Savior who has blotted out all our sins.
Like the Pharisees in today’s Scripture passage, those who do not recognize Jesus’ gospel of the water and the Spirit in this age and time are blaspheming the love of our Lord and His salvation, and they are challenging Him. On the day when everyone’s sins are judged, the Lord will infallibly condemn such people who don’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit even as they know it. How can we say that we are still sinful when we believe that Jesus Christ, who has come by the gospel of the water and the Spirit, is our Savior? If your tab is all paid off, can you still say that you still owe money? If so, then you are still a sinner.
However, the formerly blind man said, “Whether He is a sinner or not I do not know. One thing I know: that though I was blind, now I see” (John 9:25). Put differently, he was testifying here, “I may not know much about Jesus, but I know that I’ve met Him and my eyes were opened.” Even so, the Pharisees continued to taint Jesus as a sinner and interrogated the blind man, and so he said to them, “I told you already, and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you also want to become His disciples?” Then the Pharisees got angry and cursed the man, saying, “You are His disciple, but we are Moses’ disciples” (John 9:28).
As a man blessed by God, Moses symbolizes the Law. So if your faith is still under Moses, then it means that you are still under the condemnation of sin. However, the Pharisees said, “We know that God spoke to Moses; as for this fellow, we do not know where He is from.” Then the blind man said, “Why, this is a marvelous thing, that you do not know where He is from; yet He has opened my eyes! Now we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does His will, He hears him” (John 9:30-31). The man who had been blind could not understand what the Pharisees were saying. For those who have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, it’s all weird to hear what’s uttered by those who have not received the remission of sins. The formerly blind man who just received the remission of sins now won the spiritual battle against the Pharisees, who used to be his colleagues of faith. Like this, let me assure you that we the redeemed will also infallibly win our battle against those who do not believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, for we believe in this true gospel.
Those Who Believe in the Gospel of the Water and the Spirit Will Be Driven out of Worldly Religions
My fellow believers, as those who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, you and I are righteous people. As we are sinless, we will enter the Kingdom of Heaven for sure. However, when people believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, they are often excommunicated by those who don’t believe in this gospel. So those who fail to win their spiritual battle against these people end up intentionally denying their faith that had brought them the remission of sins, and they revert back to the spiritual blindness of the past that had kept them sinful, saying, “My heart is also sinful, so please don’t drive me out.” They do this because it would allow them to avoid excommunication.
However, in God’s sight it’s an unrighteous act for the righteous who have received the remission of sins to return to their false faith of the past, and to thus avoid excommunication. Even if you are excommunicated, if you follow the Lord together with the righteous, you will be happy. This means that since you have become a child of God, you do not have to revert back to become the Devil’s child again. If anyone says to you, “You are still sinful, and it is right for you to revert back to your former self as a blind person,” then you should clearly testify the gospel of the water and the Spirit, saying, “I don’t know about anything else, but one thing clear is that even though I was a sinner, I’ve now become a righteous person.” It is the unambiguous truth that we have become righteous people and opened our spiritual eyes by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Like the man who had been blind in today’s Scripture passage, I ask you to testify to your former colleagues of false faith that you have been saved through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. And if they excommunicate you, then I admonish you to embrace it boldly.
The blind man in today’s Scripture passage was also driven out by the Jews. It’s said here in verse 34, “They answered and said to him, ‘You were completely born in sins, and are you teaching us?’ And they cast him out.” In the Pharisees’ eyes, this man who did not follow their Law was a great sinner.
However, the man who had been blind but opened his eyes by the Lord’s blessing was no longer blind. Hearing that he had been cast out, Jesus found the formerly blind man and said to him, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?” The man answered, “Who is He, Lord, that I may believe in Him?” Jesus then said, “You have seen Him, and it is He who is talking with you.” Then the man said, “Lord, I believe!” and he followed Him.
Like this man who had been blind, do you also believe in Jesus as your Savior who came by the gospel of the water and the Spirit? Amen! I want you to grasp here clearly that when the formerly blind man was driven out by the Pharisees, the Lord found him and met with him. Like this, when you are cast out of false Christianity, Jesus Christ will receive you and God’s Church will embrace you into its arms. In other words, when you are driven out by the false believers, you will not wander forever, but instead, Jesus the King of kings and the fountain of all blessings will welcome you into His arms and bless you, waiting for you in God’s true Church. Therefore, all who have received the remission of sins must escape from their old relationships marked by falsehoods. You should turn around and leave the gatherings of false believers before you are cast out.
So, my fellow believes, if you have really received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and if you don’t want to be forced out by the false believers, then I admonish you to leave yourself. Get out of there and say, “I can’t possibly continue to associate myself with sinners who don’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. How can a righteous person be with sinners? How can you preach to me when you can’t even blot out your own sins? How can you call yourself my leader when you can’t even bring the remission of sins to me?” Our Jesus will then find you and meet with you, just as He had found the blind man.
The Lord said, “For judgment I have come into this world, that those who do not see may see, and that those who see may be made blind.” For those who are spiritually blind, their sight is like trying to see through thick smoke—while they do see some spiritual things, they only see vaguely and cannot discern them properly. Although they hear that Jesus has blotted out the sins of this world once and for all with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, they continue to have doubts, wondering, “You say that Jesus has blotted out all the sins of this world, but I am not sure if He has really blotted them out.” And those who can’t open their spiritual eyes, and believe in and follow false doctrines until the end, conclude by saying, “Jesus took away original sin, but He didn’t take away my personal sins.” It is these people that our Lord says are spiritually blind. The Lord said that those who do not see will see, and those who see will be made blind.
Was it then the Lord’s intention to condemn such spiritually blind people and cast them all into hell? No, that was not His intention. Let’s turn to John 9:41 here: “If you were blind, you would have no sin; but now you say, ‘We see.’ Therefore your sin remains.” Even though everyone is born spiritually blind, if anyone admits himself and acknowledges that he is completely blind, then he can find Jesus, believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and thus receive the remission of sins. However, if one does not realize himself, and seek after fleshly blessings only, then such people will not be able to receive the remission of sins. Therefore, those who do not believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit properly, and instead say that although Jesus took away their original sin He did not take away their personal sins, cannot help but remain spiritually blind until the last day. Even though they profess to believe in Jesus on their own, in God’s sight, they have not been able to wash away their hearts’ sins nor receive the remission of sins. We must remember that although those who know that they are blind can come out to Jesus and received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, for those who think that they are neither completely blind nor have opened their eyes spiritually—that is, those who think that they are neither righteous people nor sinners—it is difficult to receive the everlasting remission of sins. I admonish you to take this to your heart, remembering that those who don’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit are forever doomed to live with their sins and to be judged for these sins.
My fellow believers, not just anyone can receive the remission of sins. Those who think that they have opened their eyes; those who do not believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit and have not received the remission of sins from Jesus even as they claim to know the Word of God like the Pharisees; the arrogant who do not realize their true selves and just shout out to Jesus, “I believe! I believe!”; and the prideful who think that their faith is good enough even though their hearts still remain sinful—all these people cannot receive the everlasting remission of sins, and they will instead be condemned for their sins. They are the spiritually blind people who have not been remitted from their personal sins, even though they may say that they’ve been remitted from their original sin. If a spiritually blind man leads another blind man, both will fall into a pit. Likewise, these people themselves are not only destined to fall into hell while shouldering their sins, but they are also destined to drag others with them. All of us must realize this clearly.
My fellow believers, as you and I believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we are no longer spiritually blind. Although we were all born spiritually blind, now that we have found Jesus Christ who has come by the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and now that we believe in Him, we have opened our spiritual eyes. The Lord looked for us and came to us, who had been blind by nature, and said to us, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam.” In obedience to this we believed in the gospel of the water and the Spirit given by the Lord, that the Lord washed away our sins once and for all with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and we have thereby opened our eyes of faith and returned to God with full eyesight. Our Lord has opened our eyes both spiritually and physically as those who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
However, there still are many people who have not opened their eyes. Those who stand against Jesus—that is, those who say that their eyes of the flesh are open—still cannot recognize the Lord, their spiritual eyes are still blind, and they still cannot see the Kingdom of God properly. Their sins still remain in their hearts. Although many people in this age and time claim to have opened their spiritual eyes on their own, these people still remain sinners as they have not washed away their hearts’ sins. You have now heard the gospel of the water and the Spirit and perhaps even started to believe in it, but if your reputation in the church you are attending now and your loyalty to it are obstructing you from walking on the way of the righteous, then you should boldly throw away this reputation and turn your steps to the way of believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Otherwise you will never receive the remission of sins from the Lord.
Have you really received the perfect remission of sins by wholeheartedly believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit? If this is indeed true for you, then just like the blind man recorded in today’s Scripture passage, you will also be persecuted by the worldly church and even be driven out from it. But you shouldn’t fear this. If you believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, then it is only normal for you to be cast out from where you had belonged until now. Better yet, it’s actually a blessing for you to leave your old church before you are driven out. When the blind man in today’s Scripture passage was excommunicated, Jesus found him and blessed him. I hope this will also happen to you. I admonish you all to truly have faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
Again I admonish you to cast aside the glory and fame of the church to which you had belonged, become one with the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and lead your life of faith anew. It is my sincerest hope and prayer that you would all become one with God’s Church by placing your faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, unite with your new Church, give your testimony of salvation for the sake of those who still have not found Jesus who has come by the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and embark on this blessed road to proclaim the gospel together with the born-again saints.