Whenever a new semester starts or a new school year begins course work guidelines are given in order to prepare for the classes. We do not prepare for these classes in advance before the semester begins as sometimes the course work changes due to reviews and relevance to the current world. Our walk in faith also operates in the same way in that we dive in without ‘self-knowledge’ and begin learning and understanding God’s will after getting saved. We come as we are and slowly we get transformed into righteousness. Understanding this basic principle sets us up for a fruitful Christian life where we experience God in a relevant and personal way.
In scripture we are told of the blind man who was healed by Jesus Christ and he took on salvation before fully understanding in all simplicity. This very act set him up for righteousness unlike the Pharisees who insisted on becoming righteous first then following God, which ended in vain. He understood an important principle; we join class then learn, not the other way round. We need to however bear in mind a few key things if we are to successfully go through this class.
- Born genius
In a class setting different students have different talents; some academic, creative, social, others are gifted in sports and many more. Harnessing from our very own talents is what makes us special. A student’s uniqueness is what makes them great and thus it is important for such things to be noticed and appreciated. Unless we recognize these gifts, we become frustrated when our academic performance is not above average and lose sight of what is our strength. We can easily take ourselves as being stupid yet the only flaw is that we have limited our talents.
In our walk in this world, we go through many things that end up defining us; broken relationships, poor backgrounds, missed opportunities and many other things which often change our lives for the worst. People find themselves in addictions, engaging in crime or even ancestral curses because of these backgrounds and so end up straying from God.
The blind man was also born in that situation and people defined him as such. However Jesus saw something different in him in that, though he was born blind, it did not mean he had been condemned to sin rather it was an opportunity for God’s work to be seen in Him. Because of his blindness, the Jews would witness God’s healing power and turn to Him. Jesus was saying the blind man had something special in Him and just as different students have different talents, He recognized and used the blind man in a special way.
John 9:1-3 Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind from birth. And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in Him.”
We need to appreciate the fact that our backgrounds may have been in sin but our story does not end there; because we are redeemed through salvation, we serve as testimonies of God’s love and healing. Embrace the idea that you have been chosen by God to be used by Him despite the flaws and suddenly salvation becomes the best thing ever. What you are is special, in Christ, it will be used in a special way.
- Keep it simple
One of the key lessons in school is the importance of working smart and not hard. The top performing students are not necessarily those who burn the midnight oil studying or those who put aside their social life all in the name of studies. Part of the education system is to actually enjoy what you are doing and follow simple instructions. Simplicity makes the journey enjoyable and as we begin reaping our success yet remain simple and social, we attract more people to us and have an opportunity to influence. No one is attracted to strenuous study habits, and so illustrating that perfect balance in your life is the most attractive thing you could give people; it gives them hope that they too can achieve. We all want to succeed, yet enjoy doing it.
The man who had been born blind attracted many people after he was healed as this was a great miracle. However as he told his story, he did it in all humility taking no credit for what Christ had done for him. He understood that the healing had nothing to do with his state of righteousness and so he never hinted at how worthy he was to receive the healing. He did not make the story sound epic to attract a crowd, he simply told it as it was; clay was put on his eyes and when he washed them, he could see. Such a simple explanation made all those who saw him want to meet Jesus as the same could happen for them regardless their state of righteousness.
John 9:8-12 Therefore the neighbors and those who had seen previously that he was blind said, “Is not this he who sat and begged?” some said, “He is like him.” He said, “I am he.” Therefore they said to him, “How were your eyes opened?” He answered and said, “A man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes and said to me, ‘Go to the pool of Siloam and wash.’ So I went and washed and I received sight. Then they said to him, “Where is He?”…
Once our healing comes from our sheer trust and obedience and not our works, our testimonies become so clear that we do not need to convince people. Many times we try reaching out to people with our ‘powerful’ salvation stories or our acts of righteousness yet it is not about these rather it’s more about the transformation from within. When people see us change from the ‘blind beggar’ to what God has called us to become, they get drawn to us not because of our many works but rather out of hunger to know who changed us and how they can get the same. Lessen your works and simply give God all the credit; show people that it is all about trust and obedience. Check out these tips on simple and effective prayers.
- Have an Open mind
Wisdom is said to be the ability to know what you do not know and the humility to ask for help. We are encouraged to ask questions in a class setting in order to grasp the content better. We have to acknowledge the fact that regardless how smart we may be, we do not have all the answers. Our achievements are based on our level of thinking and so, if we block our minds from taking in things beyond what we know, we limit our achievements.
When the Pharisees had the story about the healing, they dismissed it as false. Because they had never witnessed such a thing before, it was impossible for it to happen. Their understanding was based on past experiences and so they failed to accept the great things Jesus was doing right before their eyes. They lacked the humility to accept that they probably did not have all the answers and that they could learn something new. The man who had been healed was wise to a great extent. He understood that he did not have all the answers of life and he was open to receiving new insight. He had simple faith. The Pharisees hurled all manner of accusations on Jesus yet he is unmoved. He stood on bare facts that he was blind at some point but now he could see.
John 9:24-27 So they (Pharisees) again called the man who was blind, and said to him, “Give God the glory! We know that this man is a sinner.” He answered and said, “Whether He is a sinner or not I do not know. One thing I know: that though I was blind, now I see.” Then they said to him again, “What did He do to you? How did He open your eyes?” He answered them, “I told you already, and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you also want to become his disciples?”
I was a sinner once dead in my sins but now, despite my background, I have been redeemed. The life I live today is way better than that which I lived before, a fact that no one can deny. This should be our confession daily when we seem to lack answers because new things are happening in our lives and keeping an open mind sets us up for greater things. We stand on God’s Word for this simple reason; whatever we used to be cannot be compared to the glory to come. Understanding God’s perspective through His Word is the best thing ever, click here on how you begin.
- Graduate with honors
It is very easy to change the aim of school to become passing of exams. We can focus so much on our grades and memorize our way through school yet not really learn anything in the process. Passing exams is a result of attending classes, using our gifting and listening attentively, asking questions when in need for clarification. Graduating with honors should be a result not the aim if we are to become great in our fields.
The Pharisees sought the works and in doing so completely missed out on God; on the other hand the blind man sought to accept Jesus’ work in him. By so doing he gains wisdom and works are seen in his life. He had not learnt the law for many years as the Pharisees had done yet he spoke to them in boldness as one who understood the teachings. The wisdom he had gained in such a short time was not his aim rather a result of believing in Jesus Christ.
John 9:29-34 “We (Pharisees) know that God spoke to Moses; as for this fellow, we do not know where He is from.” The man answered and said to them, “Why, this is a marvelous thing, that you do not know where He is from; yet He has opened my eyes! Now we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshipper of God and does His will, He hears him. Since the world began it has been unheard of that anyone opened the eyes of one who was born blind. If this man were not from God, He could do nothing.” They answered and said to him, “You were completely born in sins, and you are teaching us?” And they cast him out.
At times our beliefs are tested and maybe so by the very same people perceived to be higher in doctrine. The wisdom to answer such people does not come from our many devotions rather from God. I do not have to defend God’s Word as He is well able to lay a case for Himself; all He does is use me in the process. The Holy Spirit is our helper and when we need answers and wisdom, it is freely given. It is never about how long I have walked with God rather how willing I am to know Him. I do not come to Christianity for the gifts and blessings, I do it to know God; as I do so the gifts come as well.
In conclusion I put it out this way; only the love of Christ and His grace gives us salvation. Since it is not mine to give, I cannot act as if I have understood it all the way. It is a learning process that requires all humility and submission. The only way to understand the walk of righteousness and the kingdom is by admitting that I know nothing and that my knowledge is futile, only then can God teach me.
John 9:39-41 And Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, that those who do not see may see, and those who see may be made blind.” Then some of the Pharisees who were with Him heard these words, and said to Him, “Are we blind also?” Jesus said to them, “If you were blind, you would have no sin; but now you say, ‘We see.’ Therefore your sin remains.”
Sit back and relax, class is now in session.
- To My Brothers and Sisters of the Middle East and North Africa: (delugeop.wordpress.com)
- Pentecost 19 – “Let the Children Come” (Mark 10:2-16) (revtucher.com)
- The OSAS Doctrine: can I lose my salvation? (growup318.com)
- Here Kitty Kitty (aaronsummers.wordpress.com)
Ecclesiastes 1:16-18 I communed with my heart saying, “Look I have attained greatness and have gained more wisdom than all who were before me in Jerusalem. My heart has understood great wisdom and knowledge.” And I set my heart to know wisdom and to know madness and folly. I perceive that this also is grasping for the wind. For in much wisdom is much grief, and he who increases knowledge increases sorrow.
It would not be fair to leave you with this information and let you try to change by your own wisdom and strength-it is like chasing the wind. Only in Jesus Christ does all this make sense and by the guidance of the Holy Spirit will we know the way to go. Say this prayer and receive a new life..
Heavenly Father, I come to You in the Name of Jesus. Your Word says, “Whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Acts 2:21). I am calling on You. I pray and ask Jesus to come into my heart and be Lord over my life, according to Romans 10:9-10—“If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” I do that now. I confess that Jesus is Lord, and I believe in my heart that God raised Him from the dead.
I am now reborn! I am a Christian—a child of Almighty God! I am saved! You also said in Your Word, “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?” (Luke 11:13). I am also asking You to fill me with the Holy Spirit. Holy Spirit, rise up within me as I praise God. I fully expect to speak with other tongues as You give me utterance (Acts 2:4).
The prayer was obtained from the Kenneth Copeland Ministries.