On the Gospel of John, Part 26: The Purpose of the Shepherd
The Bible is not two different books. The most radical, and correct, meaning of the word catholic is “down whole”, and the earliest Church Fathers, such as Irenaeus, Clement of Alexandria and Tertullian had used it to describe the reception of the whole of the faith, meaning the reception of both New and Old Testaments, as opposed to the rejection of one or the other by the Jews or by sects such as the Marcionites. One cannot properly understand the Gospel of Christ without first understanding the will of God which was expressed in the words of His prophets.
Neglecting the pericope of the woman caught in adultery, which clearly was not a part of John’s original gospel, it is evident that on the last great day of the Feast of Tabernacles, Yahshua Christ was teaching in the temple, as John begins to describe the events of that day in chapter 7 (7:37). Then, upon His having been confronted by His adversaries, we see Christ reveal their true nature in the lengthy exchange which He had with them, as it is recorded in John chapter 8. So upon departing from them, He is found outside of the temple where He then healed a man who was blind from birth.
This act led to another confrontation with those who were opposed to Him, in which He declared: “For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not might see; and that they which see might be made blind.” They which “see not” are the lost sheep of the house of Israel for whom He had come, and “they which see” are the Judaeans who witnessed His acts and had heard Him speaking, but who nevertheless had rejected Him. This statement, from John 9:39, reveals the true significance of this event, where on this day He chose to heal such a man, as He had said earlier in that same chapter, when He was asked by His Own disciples why the man was born blind, that “Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.”
So it should be evident that the man’s very life stood as a parable in order to provide a lesson to the children of Israel: that the purpose of Christ on the day wherein John’s gospel records that He revealed the true nature and character of His enemies was to heal the children of Israel from their own collective blindness, as it is they who are identified in the Word of God which is in the prophets as being blind, “they which see not” for whom Christ had come so that they “might see”.
Standing in the assembly hall in Nazareth at the beginning of His ministry, as it is recorded in Luke chapter 4, Christ had read from Isaiah in relation to Himself, and announced that “18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, 19 To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.” Once one learns that His sheep are the children of Israel exclusively, and that His enemies are all children of the devil, that is how the blind can see.