Bartimaeus recognized that he was blind. How could he not? So, what’s our excuse?
21 My child, do not lose sight of these–keep sound wisdom and discretion, 22 and they will be life for your soul and adornment for your neck.
Bartimaeus understood that he was physically blind. He and his friend recognized that Jesus could heal them. They were, therefore, invested in Jesus. They probably had no qualms accepting Him as Messiah–even in the face of His torture and crucifixion. To hear that Jesus was back from the dead would seem quite plausible to one whose eyes had been healed, or legs had been strengthened, or had been dead and was raised from the dead by Him. These folks would be the ones who had experiential faith, which would be even stronger than the faith of the apostles (Mark 16:14), who saw these healings, but didn’t experience them personally.
Spiritual blindness goes back a long way. Look at the message given to Isaiah in 6:9-10 to deliver to the Israelites,
9 And He said, “Go, and tell this people:
‘Keep on listening, but do not understand;
And keep on looking, but do not gain knowledge.’
10 Make the hearts of this people insensitive,
Their ears dull,
And their eyes blind,
So that they will not see with their eyes,
Hear with their ears,
Understand with their hearts,
And return and be healed.”
Jesus quoted this exact passage in Matthew 13:14-15. His point was that the people of Israel were looking for a certain kind of Messiah and were not open to the True Messiah, a Suffering One. It was in this way that their hearts were insensitive, their ears dull, and their eyes blind. Those who were willing to accept a different kind of Messiah were the ones to whom Jesus said, “But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear” (Matthew 13:16).
Let’s not put limits on God with predetermined expectations. He is God, you know! Let’s give Him our lives and watch Him do amazing things in and with them.
Abba, I trust You enough to give You all I know of myself today. Tomorrow, I will do it again. I know that the key to understanding is wisdom, which is seeing from Your perspective. Jesus, I want Your perspective. Call me to Your classroom, O Lord. I want to know You in ever-increasing measure. Please, make it so. Amen.