Ferrar Fenton Bible: John 9

The Gospel as Recorded by St. John

Eyesight for a Man Born Blind

As He was going along, He observed a man who had been blind from his birth. His disciples accordingly asked Him:

“Teacher, who sinned; this man, or his parents, in consequence of which he was born blind?”

“Neither did this man sin, nor his parents,” replied Jesus, “but he is so in order that the workings of God may be displayed through him. I must do the business of My Sender while it is day; the night comes when none are able to work. While I am in the world, I am the world’s Light.”

Spitting upon the ground as He said this, and mixing clay with the spittle, He applied it to his eyes; and said to him:

“Go, wash yourself in the bathing-place of Siloam” [which, when translated means Sent]. He therefore went and washed himself, and returned seeing.

The neighbors, and those who formerly saw him when he was a beggar, asked: “Did not this man sit and beg?”

Some said, “This is the man”; others, “No, but he is very much like him.”

He himself said, “I am he.”

They therefore asked him, “How were your eyes opened?”

He replied, “The Man Who is called Jesus mixed clay, and applied it to my eyes, telling me to ‘Go to Siloam, and wash yourself.’ So I went, washed, and received my eyesight.”

“Where is He?” they then asked.

“I do not know,” he replied.

They then took the man who had once been blind before the Pharisees; for it was a Sabbath on which Jesus mixed the clay, and gave him eyesight. The Pharisees therefore asked him again in what way he had gained his eyesight.

“He applied clay to my eyes,” he answered them, “and I washed and now see.”

Some of the Pharisees therefore said: “That Man is not connected with God, because He does not observe the Sabbath.” “How could such evidences by effected by a sinful man?” remarked others. And they were divided among themselves.

They therefore asked the blind man once more: “What do you say about Him, seeing that He opened your eyes?”

“That He is a Prophet,” replied he.

The Judeans, however, did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind, and had received his eyesight, until they called the parents of him who had received his eyesight, and questioned them: “Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then does he now see?”

“We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind,” his parents answered: “but how he now sees we do not know; nor do we know who opened his eyes. He is old enough; ask him, he can speak for himself.”

His parents said this, because the Judeans had decided that should anyone acknowledge Him as Messiah, he should be expelled from the synagogue. It was for this reason that his parent said: “he is old enough, ask him.”

They accordingly recalled a second time the man who had been blind, and said to him: “Give thanks to God; we know that this fellow is wicked.”

“I do not know whether He is wicked or not,” he replied; “one thing I do know, that having been blind, I can now see.”

“What did He do to you?” they asked him once more. “In what way did He open your eyes?”

“I have already told you,” he answered them, “and you would not listen; why do you want to hear it again? Do you really wish to become His disciples?”

They accordingly abused him, and retorted: “You are His disciple; but we are the disciples of Moses. We know that God spoke with Moses; but as for this fellow, we know nothing about where He comes from.”

“Well the wonder is that you should not know,” the man exclaimed in reply to them; “and yet He opened my eyes! We know that God does not listen to sinners; but if anyone is God-fearing, and does His will, He listens to Him. Since the beginning of time, any one opening the eyes of one born blind has never been heard of. If this Man were not from God, He would not be able to do anything.”

“You were from head to foot born in sins,” they retorted, in reply; “and would you presume to teach us?” They accordingly kicked him out.

Jesus learned that they had kicked him out; and meeting him, He asked: “Do you believe on the Son of Man?”

“And Who is He, Sir?” he asked, “so that I may believe in Him.”

Jesus answered him, “You have seen Him, and it is Himself Who is now talking with you.”

“I believe, Sir,” he exclaimed, and he bowed to Him.

Then Jesus said: “I came into the world to be a Separator, so that those who do not see may see, and that those who see may become blind.”

Some Pharisees who were in His company, on hearing this remark, said to Him, “Surely we are not also blind?”

“If you were blind,” Jesus answered them, “you would not have sin; but because you say, ‘We see,’ therefore your sin remains.”

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Transcribed by JT Atkinson on 02-18-2015