Nepaug Bible Church - - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes -

Part LXII: Certifying The Credibility Of Christ Though Israel Failed To Confess Jesus As Messiah
(Luke 18:35-43)
  1. Introduction
    1. One problem critics of Christianity can have in accepting Jesus as the true Messiah from God is the failure of the nation Israel as a whole to acknowledge Him as such.
    2. Luke writes to counter doubts on the matter, and gives us a significant lesson in Luke 18:35-43 as follows:
  2. Certifying The Credibility Of Christ Though Israel Failed To Confess Jesus As Messiah.
    1. Luke's Gospel was written to reveal the credibility of the Christian faith to Theophilus, Luke 1:3-4.
    2. As Theophilus might have wondered how Jesus could be God's Messiah when the nation Israel as a whole did not acknowledge him as such, Luke records an event explaining this puzzle as follows:
      1. When Jesus traveled near the city of Jericho, He passed a blind man who sat by the wayside, Lk. 18:35.
      2. Hearing a commotion, the thinking blind beggar asked for an explanation for the crowd, Luke 18:36.
      3. Wen it was told him that Jesus of Nazareth was the cause for the crowd, the beggar cried out, saying, "Jesus, thou son of David, have mercy on me." (Luke 18:27-38)
      4. This is a marvelous statement of faith, for it showed that this man, though instructionally being hampered with his stationary life and his being unable to read in his condition, still recognized Jesus as the Biblical Messiah and the descendant of King David:
        1. The term, "son of David" was completely Messianic to the Jewish people at the time, Bible Knowledge Commentary, New Testament, p. 251; see Mtt. 22:41-42.
        2. Thus, this blind man addressed Jesus as the Messiah, and expression of great faith!
      5. To see how this man could come to this viewpoint, we are given a hint in the account as follows:
        1. Though the crowds tried to rebuke the man from addressing Jesus this way, the man insisted in calling out to Jesus, addressing Him as Messiah and begging for His mercy, Luke 18:39.
        2. Jesus stood still, and commanded that this man be brought to Him, Luke 18:40a.
        3. When Jesus asked what he wanted, the man replied, "Lord, that I may receive my sight!" (v. 40b-41)
        4. The blind man had heard that Jesus healed people, but the reason for his faith that Jesus was the Messiah as connected to the healing of the blind is found in the prophecy of Isaiah 35:4-5: (a) In this text, Isaiah predicted that God would come to Israel's needy people as associated with, among other blessings, the reception of sight for the blind, Is. 35:5a esp. (b) That this prophecy was commonly seen as Messianic in Israel is shown by Christ's including it in the texts Jesus gave to John the Baptizer to use to be sure if Jesus was the Messiah, cf. Mtt. 11:2-6 as Jesus quotes Isa. 35:5a. (c) Thus, the blind man had heard of the healings of Jesus of those who were blind, and had recalled what he 'd heard taught from Isaiah 35:4-5 that Messiah was coming to Israel's needy folk in part to give sight to the blind. (d) Thus, he had put what he'd heard about Jesus together with Isaiah 35 so that when Jesus came his way in fulfillment of Isaiah 35, he could identify Jesus from asking the people to explain the crowd's presence (v. 36) and call out for Jesus' healing help!
        5. Jesus gave the man his sight, and the healed blind man and the crowd glorified God, 18:42-43.
Lesson: Though UNABLE to READ Isaiah 35 about getting his sight when Messiah came his way, and though UNABLE to TRAVEL to see Jesus for help, unlike the crowds, the blind man was yet EXPOSED to ENOUGH teaching that he could THINK to APPLY I saiah 35 and ask for Jesus' help for his EYES once Jesus CAME his WAY as Isaiah 35 said He would COME ALONG. Thus, those who could SEE and TRAVEL were WITHOUT the excuse of ignorance for rejecting Christ.

Application: (1) One must not blame God for the fact that unsaved people die without Christ -- people die without Christ for failing to THINK and ACT upon the revelation already available to them, cf. Romans 1:18-20. (2) Positively, we must APPLY what Biblical information we have WHEN we receive it so that we, like the Jericho blind man, can ADVANCE in our pilgrimage with God's blessing unlike the unwary crowds around him, Mark 4:24-25 NIV.