The Bible describes 2 kingdoms - the kingdom of "light" (Jesus), and the kingdom of darkness (devil). The Bible also describes several spiritual problems in the heart which cause spiritual blindness - hatred, pride, bitter offences. Blindness speaks of limitations and captivity. In Mark 10, a blind man called Bartimaeus obtained his healing. What did he do that caused Jesus to stop and respond to him? What did he believe about Jesus? How did he demonstrate faith? His encounter can be a doorway to your encounter!
Transcription 10 of 12 – Spiritual Blindness
Let’s open up our Bible and we’re going to look in the gospel of Mark. We’re going to read in verse 46-52.
Mark 10:46 –
“Now they came to Jericho. As He went out of Jericho with His disciples and a great multitude, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the road begging. And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” Then many warned him to be quiet; but he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” So Jesus stood still and commanded him to be called. Then they called the blind man, saying to him, “Be of good cheer. Rise, He is calling you.” And throwing aside his garment, he rose and came to Jesus. So Jesus answered and said to him, “What do you want Me to do for you?” The blind man said to Him, “Rabbi, that I may receive my sight.” Then Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your faith has made you whole.” And immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus in the way.”
So the story begins as Jesus comes into Jericho. Jericho was a city that was cursed. Many years before it had been cursed. There was a man in the city, his name was Bartimaeus. That means – son of Timaeus. This man had an unusual problem – he was blind. He was unable to see. So he lived in a world of darkness. The Bible says – he was the son of Timaeus – which means to be secret, or to be covered over. There’s something in that family, there were secrets.
The Bible says – this man was blind, couldn’t see, so he sat on the side of the road, and he would just beg. He would ask for people to help him. The blindness affected his life. The blindness changed what he did. Instead of being able to pursue his dreams, instead of being able to do what he had in his heart to do, he was now sitting by the edge of the road, dependent on other people to help him survive in life. He was a beggar and he had the official garment of a beggar on. The garment he was wearing was the evidence of being a beggar.
This day, he did something that caused Jesus to stand still. So we’re going to look into this story and what caused Jesus to stop. This is Jesus’ last visit through Jericho. He is on His way to Jerusalem; He is on His way to the cross. On this day, the man’s life changed. It changed because he encountered Jesus.
Now, I want us to first of all, have a look at the man’s condition. The man was blind – no vision, no ability to see. This was a natural blindness - blindness caused by some physical problem. But there are other forms of blindness – there can be also a spiritual blindness. The Bible says of Jesus – that the Spirit of the Lord was upon Him to bring recovery of sight to the blind. In other words, to help people see what they couldn’t see. The story is more than just a blind man being healed. It’s the story of Jesus opening a man’s eyes, moving him out of a world of darkness into a world of light.
I want you just to close your eyes for a moment. As you close your eyes, mostly you’re in darkness. If you were to put your hand on your eyes, it becomes quite dark. Now, with your hand over your eyes, try to imagine how you’re going to walk out of this place. Consider how you’ll find your way home. You have some memory but you don’t know what lies in the way. You can’t see the obstacles. You can’t see what’s in your way. You can’t see the stairs. You can’t see the dangers.
Can you imagine now, living in that world of darkness, how you will find your way home. Can you imagine now, how you would live your life if that darkness was permanent – no colour, no sun, nothing to see. Just darkness, and no way out of it. Can you imagine what that would be like? Now, open your eyes again. Look around – how beautiful everything looks. Your sight is very important to you.