Wright - BT300 W8 1788

LORD and SAVIOURS JESUS CHRIST. 143 this man was really bornblind : to come to the bottom of this matter, they fent for his parents, and afked them, whether he was their fon, and if he really was born blind, and by what means he had received his fight ? To which they anfwered, that he was moll certainly their fon, and was born blind ; but by what means he had re- ceived his fight, or what perfon had con- ferred this great blefling upon him, they could not tell : but, as their fon was of age to anfwerfor himfelf, they referred them to him : Thfe words/bake his parents-, be- caufe they feared the Jews: for the Jews had agreed already, that if any manfhould confe /i that Jfus was the Chrift, heJhould beput out of thefynàgogue. In the conduit of the parents of this poor man, we may behold thegreat evil of the fear of man, and how poMerfully this flavifh principle aPts on the mind ; they well knew by what means their fon had receivedhis fight and, like him, they fhould; with gratitude and joy, have con- feffed the divine hand which had wrought this wonderful work ; and dared to have acknowledged this extraordinary perfon be- foreall the world, whatever theconfequences of fuch condui might have been. Let us hence learn the weaknefs ofhuman nature, and never prefume too much on our own ilrength, but implore the affiflance of the HolySpirit, at all times, and not love the praife of men, more than the favour of God. The Pharifees, finding all their attempts to difprove or leffen this miracle did but tend to ellablifh the matter of fait, and make it fhinewith greater lufire, proceeded to their old method of calumniating the divine author of it : They called again the man that had been born blind, andPaid unto him, Give God the praife: we know that this man is a finer. To which the man anfwered, Whether he be a faner or no, I know not : one thing Iknow, that, whereas I was blind,' now I fee. This anfwer was not fufficient to fatisfy the proud and envi- ous oppofers of the Son of God, but they 3 fought to confound the poor man, who had thus plainly and boldly affirmed the truth, reppeating a matter of £af, in which it was impoffible he fhould be midlaken, with a multiplicity ofgneftions, and would meanly leadapoor fimple beggarinto all the wind- ings of fophiliry ; and with thisview afked him, What did he to thee ? How opened he thine eyes? Thefe queftions they had afked before, and received plain and pofitive au- fwers to each : but they feem now to re- peat them with defign that the man, by repeating the manner in which he received the cure, might be fenfible that Jesus had, by effefing his miracle, violated the Sab- bath, and muf, of confequence, be an im- pofter. Thus the enemies of our Redeemer would have perfuaded the perfon who had received- the invaluable bleffing offight, to join with them in thejudgment they formed of the- great perfon who had been his ge- nerousbenefaaor : but their obflinacy and perverfenef appeared fo plain to him, that he boldly anfwered, Ihave told you already, andye did not hear: wherefore wouldye hear it again? Will ye 'alfo be his difciples? _ This anfwer was received by the coun- cil with indignation, fcorn, and contempt ; for they reviled him, andfaid, thou art his difciple, but we are Mofes' difciples. We know that God (make unto Mofes: as for this fellow, we know not whence he is. The poor beggarwas furprifed, that fo ex- traordinary a perfon, and one who .pof- feífed fuch wonderful powers,' and exerted them for the good of mankind, fhould be unknown to the rulers of Ifrael, Why herein is a marvellous thing, Paid he, that yeknow not whence he is, and yet he hath opened mine eyes :. we know that God heareth not (inners ; but if a man be a worfhipper of God, and doeth his will, him he hearetlz. Since the world began, it was not heard, that any man opened the eyes ofone that was born blind. If this man were not of God, he could do nothing. Such was the plain and powerful reafon- ing of this poor man ; his inference was juft and natural, and founded:on a plain matter