THE SABBATH BREAKER - PART 1
"While I am in the world, I am the light of the world."
"When He had said this, He spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and applied the clay to his eyes, and said to him, 'Go, wash in the pool of Siloam' (which is translated, Sent). And so he went away and washed, and came back seeing."
There are a few things that are very meaningful about this miracle that Jesus performed. One is that (as in many other cases) he deliberately performed this miracle on a Sabbath day. The other is the way in which He worked this miracle. Both of these aspects of this event exposes our propensity toward religion. In fact, everything the Lord did was designed to break that religious nature which is within all of us.
The Origins of Religion
You may think that you are not religious. But I tell you, my friend, that we are all religious to one degree or another. We are all religious about something. Even the most godless atheist on the planet is religious about something. How do I know this? It's very simple. The very foundation of our fallen nature is based upon religion.
The tree of the knowledge of good and evil contained the essence and foundation for all religious thought patterns. Please notice with me that the knowledge of good and evil come from the same tree! Wouldn't you think that good would come from a separate tree other than the same one that contains evil? Yet, the knowledge of both good and evil come from the same tree. This will be important as we move along.
First, this tree is about knowledge. Religion is always about knowledge. How much do you know about God and the bible? How much do you know about what God demands from you? You must be trained. You must have knowledge. Knowledge is power!
Second, the knowledge you need is about what is good and evil. What is right and what is wrong? What is black and what is white? What is positive and what is negative? Religion is based upon you doing the right things; you doing good things. If you are going to be a righteous person, you must do the right things. In religion, we are constantly focusing on seeking the good and knowing and doing the right thing. Of course, this means that we must judge the difference between right and wrong, good and evil. When we see someone doing evil, they must be judged. The solution for doing evil is to do good. "Good" now becomes our salvation and the solution to all of the evil in the world.
Of course, we know that many things that appear to be good actually have an "evil" intent behind them. Many times we give with the intention of getting some recognition or honor in return. This is but one example of doing something "good" with an "evil" intention. This can become very messy and confusing because of the fact that the knowledge of good and evil come from the same tree. Good can sometimes seem evil and evil can sometimes seem good! As these things become blurred, it becomes very difficult for us to see the difference.
The Tree of Life
Jesus said that He came to give us life and life more abundantly. This is our only hope of being set free from the dilemma of right and wrong, good and evil. When we choose life, then we will be set free from religion.
Now, let's take a closer look at this story in John 9 of Jesus healing the blind man. The way that He did this completely breaks all the rules of religion contained in every "book."
Your Lord spat on the ground! How uncouth . . . How undignified . . . How sacrilegious! Just think about it for a moment. He spat . . .
Spitting is probably one of the most unspiritual things a person can do. Besides, isn't it really kind of disgusting? I mean, after all, we are talking about spitting here! This is an act that we would expect from a tobacco chewing hillbilly, not from the Son of God. He broke all the protocols of religion. How could He do such a thing? Doesn't He know the proper way to heal someone? Doesn't He know how to do it right?
Everyone knows that the right way to heal someone is with oil, not with mud made out of spit! You are supposed to take the oil that has been anointed by the priests (elders) and apply it to the person's forehead. Then you lay your hands on their head and pray "in the name of Jesus." This means that you end your prayer for healing with the phrase "in the name of Jesus." This is the right way to heal someone, yet Jesus didn't do any of these things. He didn't even pray for the guy! He just made the mud, put it on his eyes, and then told him to go wash it off. There is nothing religious about your Lord. He always does things that deliberately blow apart all of our religious ideas.
Life Being Placed Into Clay
What Jesus did was full of meaning. Yet, we have missed it because we were busy being offended by His "unorthodox" ways of doing things. He healed this man in this way for two reasons. He wanted to break the religious mindset, and He wanted to reveal another aspect of Himself. He took something out of His mouth and mixed it with the clay. In other words, He placed part of Himself into a vessel of clay. Paul said it this way, "We have this treasure in earthen vessels." He placed His life into us! Religion could never give us sight. Only His life within us could ever give us the ability to truly see. We are all blind. We are blind because we are in Adam, and Adam chose religion instead of life. He chose right and wrong, good and evil over the total freedom of God's own life. Christ came to bring us that life. He gave us sight by giving us His life. "In Him was life; and the life was the light of men."
Jesus healed this man of his blindness on the Sabbath. This, of course, offended all of the religious people. They were not interested in life. They were only interested in making sure that everyone kept all of the rules and regulations. This only brings condemnation and death.
Your Lord is a Sabbath breaker! Could it be that He is trying to break the "Sabbaths" in all of us? Is there some "sacred ground" that you don't want Him to touch? One thing is for sure: He wants you to be able to touch the life that is within you so that you will be able to see more of Him.