– James H. Aughey
The Blind Can See
I have always wondered about why John the Baptist sent someone to ask Jesus if He was the one or not, as it said, “when John heard in prison about the deeds of the Christ, he sent word by his disciples and said to him, “Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another” (Matt 11:3). John’s answer was that the blind are made to see, among other things. The truth is we too were once blind but now can see, but that’s only because the truth has set us free (John 8:32) and Jesus is the truth.
The Lame Can Walk
When John’s disciples came to Jesus and asked Him if He as the One whom God sent, Jesus told them to say to John, “Go and tell John what you hear and see” (Matt 11:4) that “the blind receive their sight and the lame walk” (Matt 11:5), so to be sure, we could not even walk with God until He brought us to saving faith in Christ. We were lame from the head down, but we are now new creations in Christ (2nd Cor 5:17), and now we can truly walk with God.
The Lepers Are Cleansed
Jesus also said to tell John that the “lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear” (Matt 11:5), and in the Bible, sin is often described as leprosy. Isaiah writes that our works are nothing more than filthy rags to God (Isaiah 64:6), and the rags that Isaiah was writing about are the same rags that were used to wrap and bandage lepers. That’s why we cannot ever be saved by works (Eph 2:8), rather, we are saved to do good works (Eph 2:10).
The Deaf Can Hear
Jesus said that the reason He spoke in parables was because, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given” (Matt 13:11), and so, “This is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand” (Matt 13:13). For us, God has given us His Spirit so that we might hear and obey but the Jewish religious leaders of Jesus’ day proved; you can listen but still not hear.
The Dead are Raised
Jesus raised people from the dead, and should have been proof enough to the Jews of His day that He was the fulfillment of their expected Messiah, but they just wouldn’t accept that fact. That’s because, they, like us, were dead in their sins (Eph 2:-1-2). Until we are born again or born from above (John 3:3-7), which the Greek word of “born again” means (“born from above”), we too are dead in our sins. Somebody needed to pay the wages that our sin had brought (Rom 6:23), and that was Jesus Who quickened us by His life, death, and resurrection, and why John the Baptist needed to know that “the dead are raised up” (Matt 11:5).
The Good News is Preached
The main reason Jesus came is to preach the gospel, which means we must repent and believe (Mark 1:15). That’s why Jesus told his disciples to tell John the Baptist, “the poor have good news preached to them” (Matt 11:5c). The Good Physician came to heal our diseases, but someone who is healed, will eventually die, so the greatest healing of all is to receive eternal life, where even if we die, we shall yet live again (John 10:25-26). That’s why they call it the good news. It’s still bad news for those who refuse to trust in Christ (John 3:18, 36), but for those of us who already have, the news couldn’t be any better.
Jesus’ sinless life, death, and resurrection made it possible for those of us who were once blind to now see; for those of us who walked with the Devil but now walk with God; to wash away the leprosy of sin; to have ears to hear and obey; to raise us from our death of living in sin (Rom 6:23); and to hear the good news of the gospel of the kingdom of God.