As God fashioned the first man from the clay of the earth, Jesus gives the blind man new life by anointing his eyes with clay.
God's ways of seeing are not our ways, we hear in today's First Reading. Jesus illustrates this in the Gospel as the blind man comes to see and the Pharisees are made blind.
The blind man stands for all humanity. "Born totally in sin," he is made a new creation by the saving power of Christ.
As God fashioned the first man from the clay of the earth (see Genesis 2:7), Jesus gives the blind man new life by anointing his eyes with clay (see John 9:11). As God breathed the spirit of life into the first man, the blind man is not healed until he washes in the waters of Siloam, a name that means "Sent."
Jesus is the One "sent" by the Father to do the Father's will (see John 9:4; 12:44). He is the new source of life-giving water: the Holy Spirit who rushes upon us in Baptism (see John 4:10; 7:38-39).
This is the Spirit that rushes upon God's chosen king David in today's First Reading. A shepherd like Moses before him (see Exodus 3:1; Psalm 78:70-71), David is also a sign pointing to the good shepherd and king to come -- Jesus (see John 10:11).
The Lord is our shepherd, as we sing in today's Psalm. By His death and Resurrection, He has made a path for us through the dark valley of sin and death, leading us to the verdant pastures of the kingdom of life, the Church.
In the restful waters of Baptism, He has refreshed our souls. He has anointed our heads with the oil of Confirmation and spread the Eucharistic table before us, filling our cups to overflowing. With the once-blind man, we enter His house to give God the praise, to renew our vow: "I do believe, Lord."
"The Lord looks into the heart," we hear today. Let Him find us, as Paul advises in today's Epistle, living as "children of light," trying always to learn what is pleasing to our Father.
Fourth Sunday of Lent
1 Samuel 16:1, 6-7, 10-13
- Scott Hahn is the founder and president of the Saint Paul Center for Biblical Theology. He is also the bestselling author of numerous books including The Lamb's Supper, Reasons to Believe, and Rome Sweet Home (co-authored with his wife, Kimberly). Some of his newest books are The Creed, Joy to the World and Evangelizing Catholics.
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