The Great Continental Divide
John 9:16 "Therefore said some of the
Pharisees, This man is not of God, because he
keepeth not the sabbath day. Others said, How can a
man that is a sinner do such miracles? And there was
a division among them.
17 They say unto the blind man again, What sayest thou of him, that he hath opened thine eyes? He said, He is a prophet.
18 But the Jews did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind, and received his sight, until they called the parents of him that had received his sight.
19 And they asked them, saying, Is this your son, who ye say was born blind? how then doth he now see?
20 His parents answered them and said, We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind:
21 But by what means he now seeth, we know not; or who hath opened his eyes, we know not: he is of age; ask him: he shall speak for himself.
22 These words spake his parents, because they feared the Jews: for the Jews had agreed already, that if any man did confess that he was Christ, he should be put out of the synagogue.
23 Therefore said his parents, He is of age; ask him.
24 Then again called they the man that was blind, and said unto him, Give God the praise: we know that this man is a sinner.
25 He answered and said, Whether he be a sinner or no, I know not: one thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see.
26 Then said they to him again, What did he to thee? how opened he thine eyes?
27 He answered them, I have told you already, and ye did not hear: wherefore would ye hear it again? will ye also be his disciples?
28 Then they reviled him, and said, Thou art his disciple; but we are Moses' disciples.
29 We know that God spake unto Moses: as for this fellow, we know not from whence he is.
30 The man answered and said unto them, Why herein is a marvellous thing, that ye know not from whence he is, and yet he hath opened mine eyes.
31 Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth his will, him he heareth.
32 Since the world began was it not heard that any man opened the eyes of one that was born blind."
1. The Division Among Us
2. Born Blind
3. Rejected of Men
4. Now I See
5. Will Ye Also Be His Disciple?
1. The Division Among Us
In verse sixteen, we have this: “And there was a division among them.”
Why is it that when Jesus is around folks get disturbed?
Why is it this way? It is this way because the BOOK says it will be this way. Turn to Luke chapter twelve, verse fifty-one. Here is the shocker. Are you ready?
“Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division: For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three. The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.” [Luke 12:51-53]
You would think everyone on this planet would be of one accord, and be UNITED in their opinion concerning Jesus Christ. But that is not the way it is. There are ultimately just two opinions. [Nobody will be able to stay on the fence long [FENCE STRADDLERS] when it is all said and done.]
Here are two opinions that men have concerning Jesus Christ. Some will think HE is good, and some will think HE is bad. Simple isn’t it? Now did you notice something here? According to verse fifty-one, Jesus Christ is a DIVIDER.
Now here is a question for you? How long halt ye between two opinions? It is really no different today than it was in Elijah’s day. There are just two OPINIONS. Which way are you going my friend?
“And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word.” [1 Kings 18:21]
The Pharisees had their opinion. “Therefore said some of the Pharisees, This man is not of God, because he keepeth not the sabbath day. Others said, How can a man that is a sinner do such miracles?”
What do you say?
2. Born Blind
Verse nineteen and twenty: “And they asked them, saying, Is this your son, who ye say was born blind? how then doth he now see? His parents answered them and said, We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind.”
This man’s parents knew their son was blind from birth.
This PHYSICAL blindness from birth pictures our SPIRITUAL blindness from birth. Do you want to know something? I was as blind as a bat to the things of this BOOK. I was blind to WHO Jesus Christ is.
[Now what is your story? Were you not BLIND from birth also?]
For the first twenty-three years of my life I was totally blind to the spiritual things. I could not see what life was really all about. I will sum it up this way. There was no meaning to my life. I was totally lost in the woods, so to speak.
3. Rejected Of Men
Verse twenty-two: “These words spake his parents, because they feared the Jews: for the Jews had agreed already, that if any man did confess that he was Christ, he should be put out of the synagogue.”
Trouble will come to the believer in Jesus Christ, just as trouble came to the SAVIOR. Being despised and hated of men is par for the course. Did not the SCRIPTURE prophesy of THE SON of GOD in Isaiah chapter fifty-three, verse three this way?
“He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.”
Does not the SCRIPTURE tell us [THE CHRISTIAN] in First Peter chapter four, verse sixteen this: “Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf.”
If men rejected HIM, they will reject you.
That is a fact of life!
4. Now I See
In verse twenty-five we have the answer of a man that was born blind but now can see. Are you ready?
“He answered and said, Whether he be a sinner or no, I know not: one thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see.”
A man would be a FOOL to argue otherwise in this situation. That the man can now SEE … shows WHO Jesus Christ is: GOD!
The RESULTS … says it all. Yet many in this old world will try to ARGUE otherwise. You might say that a man’s greatest enemy is quite often his own SELF. That is too bad. What a sad state to be in.
Several hundred years ago, a wicked man, a slave trader, by the name of John Newton got gloriously saved by GRACE. John Newton getting saved proves God can work inside the worst of men, and that HE DRAWS all men to HIMSELF.
On his tombstone is this inscription:
"John Newton, Clerk, once an infidel and libertine, a servant of slaves in Africa, was, by the rich mercy of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, preserved, restored, pardoned, and appointed to preach the faith he had long labored to destroy."
It is John Newton’s hymn that we as believers sing today!
"Amazing grace! how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me!
I once was lost, but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see."
“One thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see.” Amen!
5. Will Ye Also Be His Disciple?
Verse twenty-eight: “Then they reviled him, and said, Thou art his disciple; but we are Moses' disciples.”
They can label me [Rick St.James] a disciple of Jesus Christ.
• Since the day I got saved [in 1973] all I want is to be IDENTIFIED with Jesus Christ.
• My OPINION straight out … is that Jesus Christ is the SON of GOD.
• I was BORN blind but now I SEE.
• I know all about the DIVISION.
Down through the years, I have seen some folk say NO to Jesus Christ, [which involves THE SIN of OMISSION], and down through those same years, I have seen some folk say YES to the SON of GOD [by RECEIVING HIM as SAVIOR and LORD].
For it could not be otherwise, because the BOOK itself has prophesied that it would be this way. Our sinful, proud, and arrogant hearts naturally REBEL against the LIGHT of LIFE.
“Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” [John 8:12]
What about you, my friend?
• Are you identified with Jesus Christ?
• Are you his disciple?
• What is your opinion about Jesus Christ?
• You were BORN blind, but can you now SEE?
What about this DIVISION?
This is a great DIVIDE, that we all see happening right before our eyes [down through the years of our time that we have on the face of this earth] among our family, and among our loved ones, and among our friends and our neighbors?
Is it not the great continental divide, where the water must flow down just one of the two sides?
Which way are you going? You must decide.
THE GREAT CONTINENTAL DIVIDE is before you.
How long halt ye between two opinions?
Now here are your TWO choices:
1. Reject Jesus Christ like the Pharisees did:
for “they reviled him.”
2. Receive Jesus Christ. “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” [John 1:12]