"And he took the blind man by the hand and led him out of the village, and when he had spit on his eyes and laid his hands on him, he asked him, “Do you see anything?” And he looked up and said, “I see people, but they look like trees, walking.” Then Jesus laid his hands on his eyes again; and he opened his eyes, his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly." -Mark 8:23-25
I remember when I first thoroughly read the story of Jesus healing a blind man in Mark 8. Out of all the accounts of Jesus' miracles this was the most peculiar to me. At first glance, it is almost as if Jesus made a mistake in His healing of the blind man. The blind man is begging to be healed and Jesus touches him and asks if he can see. There is no doubt, a miracle did happen; a blind man was given sight, but terrible sight it seems. This man could see people, but the people looked like trees. Jesus goes on to touch his eyes again and at that point the man's sight is fully restored. Now, we know that God does not make mistakes, therefore Jesus had a purpose for healing this man in this fashion. The question is, what is that purpose? As we continue to read through Mark 8 I think it becomes very clear what the healing of the blind man teaches us.
Immediately after this story in Mark we read the great account of Peter confessing Jesus as the Christ (Mark 8:27-30). While everyone has their own opinion of who they think Jesus is, it is Peter who knows the truth and declares that Jesus is the Christ, He is the Messiah, He is the Anointed One of God. At that moment when everyone else is blind, it is Peter who seems to see so clearly. In reality, I do not think Peter saw all that clearly; he most certainly could see but his vision was quite blurry.
As we continue to read Mark 8 we see Jesus teaching the disciples about His death and resurrection. Jesus explains to them that He MUST go to the cross and rise 3 days later. If Jesus is the Messiah then he must fulfill the messianic prophecies of Isaiah 53 and Daniel 7, and Jesus does this through His death, burial, resurrection, and ascension. As Jesus is teaching His disciples what the Christ must do, Peter pulls Him aside to rebuke Him. Peter is the one who declared that Jesus was the Christ, Christ is the one who is declaring what the Christ must do, but it is at this point that Peter intercedes. The same man who knows Jesus to be the Christ refuses to receive teaching from the Christ!?!? Jesus responds to Peter by saying,“Get behind me, Satan! For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.” (Mark 8:33) It becomes obvious in this passage that Peter was not seeing clearly. He was unaware of what the Christ came to do even though he knew that Jesus was the Christ. Peter's vision became clear once Jesus rose from the grave and ascended on high, it was at that point that Peter was devoted to preaching the very news that he rejected in Mark 8 for the rest of his life!
I submit to you that there is one of three types of vision that people have in regard to Christ: we have blindness, we have blurriness, or we have clarity. The first type of vision, or lack thereof, is blindness. Blindness is where we all begin and it is simply the fact that we cannot even see the good news of Jesus Christ. We cannot know Him in fact, we don't desire to know Him, unless and until the Spirit of God draws us toward Him. There are some who are blind that will never see clearly, in fact they love the darkness so much that they never desire to come out to see The Light who gives sight.
The second type is blurriness. In the Mark 8 passage we see that it is God who is pursuing Peter; before Peter is given the gift of saving faith he has a blurred perception of Jesus. Although he knows Jesus to be the Christ, he has his own presuppositions of what the Christ will do. Peter began to see the truth with blurry vision because God granted it to Him and it is God who made his vision clear.
Lastly, this brings us to the vision of clarity. Seeing clearly means that we know, love, and see Jesus in all His truth. Having clarity means that we have been born again by the Spirit and that we have been made a new creation and that we have been adopted by God as His children! God gives clear vision according to His eternal purpose and plan. God, in His Grace and Mercy, call His people out of the darkness and enables us to call upon Him as we come to see, learn, and know Jesus as risen Lord!
The question you must ask yourself is...Do I see Jesus clearly? Friend, the worst way to exit earth is to have lived this life without seeing Jesus clearly. If you do not see Christ as He is, the glorious exalted Lord and the only Savior of sinners, then pray to the Sovereign God of the universe, who is able to give sight to the blind, that you will see, know, and love Jesus. To Him be the honor and glory, forever and ever.