Spiritual Blindness - Part 2
13 May 2017
One of the worst things we can do as Christians is to get born again but remain spiritually blind to what Jesus has already made available through His death and resurrection. He did this not because we deserve it, but because of His unmerited favor toward us. When He called us out of the darkness into the light, we were actually called out of sin into salvation, but we will not see this until we understand it spiritually. This is an important point we must fully grasp if we are to make progress in life. When we live our lives under the Law of Moses, we are in captivity. In the New Testament, when Jesus talked about the recovery of sight to the blind and the preaching of liberty to the prisoners, He meant that He had come to open blind eyes to the captivity of the law. Until we come to understand the Gospel of Grace, we will be saved but still blind.
- Jesus opens our spiritual eyes so we are no longer blind to the truth.
- Spiritual blindness is one of the greatest problems in a Christian’s life.
- There are things that have been made available to us that we cannot see with our physical eyes. The Bible links blindness to a lack of understanding.
- Christians who have not come to the revelation of grace are still blind. The Scripture about the man who said he once was blind but now could see (John 9:25) was referring to grace.
- Jesus is the grace of God (John 1:14).
- When Jesus said He was anointed to preach, heal, and deliver, He was fulfilling a prophecy Isaiah made. It was almost identical to what Isaiah said; the only difference was that Isaiah mentioned the opening of the prison, and Jesus mentioned the recovery of sight to the blind.
- The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to preach good tidings to the meek. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn (Isaiah 61:1, 2).
- And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day and stood up to read. And there was delivered to him the book of the prophet Esaias. When he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written, The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor. He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, preach deliverance to the captives, recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord. And he closed the book and gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him (Luke 4:16-20).
- The blindness referred to in Luke 4:18 is not physical blindness, but an inability to see or understand things the way they really are.
- When Jesus said He was anointed to preach the Gospel, He was referring to grace (Acts 20:24; Galatians 1:6, 7). Throughout the New Testament, the Gospel is the Good News about God’s grace.
- All religions require people to do something to get something. This is totally different than having a relationship with Jesus Christ.
- There is a distinction between the Bible and the Gospel of Grace.
- When we were all fallen to earth, I heard a voice speaking to me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? It is hard for you to kick against the pricks. And I said, Who are you, Lord? And he said, I am Jesus, whom you persecute. But rise and stand on your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to make you a minister and a witness both of these things which you have seen, and of those things in which I will appear to you, delivering you from people and from the Gentiles, unto whom I now send you, to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and inheritance among them who are sanctified by faith that is in me. Whereupon, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision (Acts 26:14-19).
- Jesus called Paul to the same assignment outlined in Isaiah 61:1, 2 and Luke 4:18.
- A minister is a servant; Paul was called to serve others.
- Paul’s eyes were opened even though he did not deserve this.
- Paul needed to avoid focusing on his past when he began to come into contact with the families and loved ones of the people he once persecuted and killed.
- When God sends us to a particular group of people, He must first deliver us from them if we are to effectively minister to
- Ignorance is the power of Satan.
- The Bible and the Gospel are not synonymous. The Gospel of Grace is in the Bible, but not everything in the Bible is grace. Some of it is law.
- Paul wrote that we are no longer under the law, but under grace (Romans 6:14).
- Under grace, our self-efforts are not needed; all we need to do is believe what God did for us and we will receive what was promised.
- Most churches are still teaching the law. For example, in the New Testament, Jesus said to men that they must forgive others for God to forgive them (Matthew 6:14, 15; Mark 11:25, 26), but the Gospel did not start until Jesus died. The law was still valid until then.
- Under the law, which was the old agreement between God and man, non-Jews were not even involved. But when the Canaanite woman asked Jesus to heal her daughter, He showed her grace (Matthew 15:21-28). He knew He was on the earth to prepare the new agreement which included everyone.
- Under the old agreement, the people served God. Under the new agreement, He serves us. What Jesus did is enough; we need nothing more. God’s grace is sufficient for us (2 Corinthians 12:9).
- When we get saved, we are permanently sealed with the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13), and no matter what we do, God will never leave us. We are already seated in heaven.
- We must not make the mistake of thinking we can continue sinning because the law is no longer in force. The law is what causes us to sin even more. When we are under grace and know who we are in Christ, we will not want to keep sinning (Romans 5:20).
- The enemy wants to keep us in the dark concerning the power of grace.
- Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers. That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him. The eyes of your understanding being enlightened, that you may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints. And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality, power, might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come (Ephesians 1:16-21).
- Paul prayed this every day over the church at Ephesus. He wanted them to know what they had in Jesus.
- This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them because of the blindness of their heart. Who being past feeling have given themselves over to lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness. But you have not so learned Christ (Ephesians 4:17-20).
- We can learn the mechanics and the principles of religion, but it does not matter until we learn Christ. Principles without Jesus will eventually fail us.
- We must heed Jesus’ warning that life does not consist in the abundance of possessions (Luke 12:15). Life consists of the people with whom we live it.
- In whom the god of this world has blinded the minds of them who do not believe, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them (2 Corinthians 4:4).
- The greatest attacks from the devil will be directed toward those who preach the Gospel of Grace.
Paul was a prime example. He was shipwrecked, cast off a cliff, and rejected. Through it all, he stayed faithful to his calling.
Isaiah 61:1, 2
Galatians 1:6, 7
Matthew 6:14, 15
Mark 11:25, 26
2 Corinthians 12:9
Ephesians 1:13, 16-21
2 Corinthians 4:4