Step 1: Opening and Introduction to the lesson – Personal Testimonies from last week’s study and Reflection: Who is someone you admire because they have overcome a disability? Describe a time when an authority figure (your boss, a policeman, your pastor) pulled you over for a talk?
Step 2: Hear – Read: Jesus Heals a Man Born Blind. John 9:1 – 41.
Step 3: Explore – Discover the Passage
- What idea lies behind the disciples’ question (v. 1): Curiosity? Guilt-tripping? A trap? Compassion? How did they view the blind man? What does Jesus’ answer (vv. 3-5) reveal about how he views the man’s suffering? Why did Jesus heal the man in the manner he did?
- In this story, what is the work of God (v. 3)? The night that is coming (v. 4)? The light of the world (v. 5)? How are sin and suffering related? What convinces some of the Pharisees to stand against Jesus (v. 16, 5:9,10,23)? What question bothers others? Why does Jesus heal on Sabbath?
- In light of their divided opinion, why do the Pharisees question the man’s parents (vv. 18-23)? How would you feel if you were his father or mother? Note the conflicting claims to knowledge and certainty on the part of the Pharisees, the parents and the man born blind. What is each side sure of? Not sure of?
- In the course of this investigation, what is the man able to see about Jesus (vv. 12, 17, 25, 27, 30-33, 36, 38)? About the Pharisees? How is his attitude changing? In contrast to the man’s growing spiritual insight, how are the Pharisees’ progressing? What’s their real motive in questioning the man (vv. 28, 34)? What in the man’s response finally puts them over the top?
Step 4: Connect – Apply the Passage:
- What physical or emotional misfortune in your life has turned into an opportunity for God to demonstrate his power? When you hear about another person’s misfortune, do you react like the disciples or Jesus? Why?
- What sight would you tell the healed blind man to go and see as soon as possible? How would you rate your spiritual vision right now? What could help improve your spiritual vision?
- Who has been the toughest person for you to explain your faith to? Why? What is helpful with people who ridicule your faith
- Has your faith in Jesus led to your exclusion from any group? How has this hurt or helped you? Have you ever been afraid of religious leaders? Why?
Step 5: Reflect: Jesus said, For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind.