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Shane Willard 2010 (4 of 4)

Shane Willard

Page 2 of 10
And Jesus stood still and commanded him to be called. They called the blind man saying be of good comfort, rise up, He's calling you. In other words hey man, it's your lucky day. It's your lucky day. Now here's the word verse: And casting away his garment he rose up and came to Jesus, and answering Jesus said to him what do you desire that I do to you? Now I want you to understand. Look at the sentence structure again: And casting away his garment he rose up and came to Jesus, and answering him Jesus said to him. Has the blind man said anything to Jesus yet? No. What did he do? He cast aside his garment and casting aside his garment was some sort of statement that Jesus knew required a response. It says in answering Jesus said to him what do you desire that I should do to you? The blind man said to Him my Lord, that I can see again and Jesus said go, your faith has healed you and instantly he saw again and he followed Jesus in His way.

Notice that in the First Century when someone got saved, when someone got converted it wasn't just a prayer belief experience; no, it was a decision to follow His way of life. It was about bringing the kingdom to something - but in the middle of this here's basically the story. Blind guy, crying out Son of David, have mercy on me! Son of David, have mercy on me! Son of David, have mercy on me! Finally Jesus says would somebody bring him to me? They say look, it's your lucky day. Jesus is calling you, and the blind man's first response was to throw aside his garment. Now you look at that in the natural and you would think that Jesus would think well you're a little too excited to see me, you know what I'm saying? Like if you got so excited to see me you started stripping off your clothes [laughter] I'd be like hang on, hang on, hold on right? And that's sort of the picture you get here, a guy getting so excited to see Jesus he starts throwing aside his garments. It's like whoa dude, put it back on! [Laughter] But you have to understand some history here to really get what he's saying.

It says that the blind man threw aside his garment. Well what was true - was there anything unique about a blind man's garment that wasn't true of anybody else's garment? Anything? Of course. In First Century Jewish culture you had to have a license to beg. You couldn't just sit out on the street and beg. You had to have a license to beg okay, so you would go through a legal process by which you proved your validity as a beggar, that you couldn't make money any other way okay. They would put you through some sort of test and different things to help you decide well can you actually make money another way, or are you relegated to begging. Once they knew that there was no other option for you to beg they would give you a license to beg. Now what's the problem? Especially for a blind person you can't display your license to beg right, because all it takes you to do is take your hand off it for a second and someone could snatch it and replace it with something else, play practical jokes on you, all kinds of things they could do to you.

So your license to beg, what they did is they gave you a different coloured tallit. Everybody else's tallit was a certain colour but yours would be a different colour, so a different coloured tallit - a tallit was the prayer shawl that was the outer garment. So it says that when Jesus called the blind man, it says the first thing the blind man did was cast aside his garment and that action demanded a response from Jesus. Jesus says what do you want me to do for you? That's faith right there. Why? What was the blind man doing? He was throwing away his license to beg before Jesus ever did anything. He was throwing away his license to beg before Jesus ever did anything. Jesus said now that's faith. That's faith. When you're willing to throw away your license to make money because you're so sure that you're fixing to be healed, that's faith. That's faith. You say what does that have to do with me? Everything. Is there any part of you that's holding on to something that all it takes is for you to throw that away for Jesus to touch you? You say well what do you mean? Well let me be very practical.