It seems odd. But healthy blindness does exist! We began to examine that thought by looking at the life of Isaiah. Then we stopped in John 9 to learn from a man who was born blind. And in this post we’ll see someone who was born with sight but his heart was incurably blind. God intervened in his life and gave him healthy blindness. He changed the world. What could God do through you if you asked for a healthy case of blindness?
Born With Sight
A man who had every earthly advantage learned he was seriously misguided. You can probably guess his name, but let’s hold the suspense as long as possible. This man obviously came from a wealthy family. He was taught in the most prestigious of schools. He was the star student of the most sought after teacher. And yet this man had a life changing encounter with God Himself. And there is a certain irony in the encounter that applies to healthy blindness.
That life changing encounter happened to a man named Saul. He would later come to be known as Paul the Apostle. When we see him in Acts 9 he is suffering from an acute case of blindness. As I said, his eyes were fully functional. But he was blind to truth. Notice the opening of Acts 9:
Now Saul, still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest, and asked for letters from him to the synagogues at Damascus, so that if he found any belonging to the Way, both men and women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem.
The Gift Of Blindness
Saul was a Jew. But that only begins to describe him. He was a Pharisee, an elite religious leader in his society. He was in the upper part of Jewish culture. Saul was zealous for the Lord; or at least he thought he was. But was that the truth? Saul was about to learn he was actually blind to God and the things of God. We know this by the Lord’s own words to Saul on the Damascus road:
“Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” And he said, “Who are You, Lord?” And He said, “I am Jesus whom you are persecuting, but get up and enter the city, and it will be told you what you must do.”
Saul was taking Christians bound to Jerusalem. That means they were being arrested for trial as heretics and most likely going to suffer execution. His world was rocked by the Lord’s question. Saul didn’t think he was persecuting the Lord. He thought he was serving the Lord. How can anyone be so blind?
It’s a divine touch of irony that Saul’s encounter with God caused him to be physically blind! Think about the huge reversal in his life. He walked into that blinding light on the Damascus road with functional eyes and a blind heart. He left that encounter with blind eyes and the eyes of his heart were wide open. Notice what the Lord told him:
Saul got up from the ground, and though his eyes were open, he could see nothing; and leading him by the hand, they brought him into Damascus.
Proving Healthy Blindness
Saul had to go to Damascus and meet a man named Ananias. This devoted believer had one assignment from God:
- Go to the house of Judas
- Find Saul
- Pray for Saul
Ananias wasn’t blind to the danger this assignment brought. He knew who Saul was and what Saul did. But Ananias had his eyes focused on serving and pleasing God. So in a sense we can say he turned a blind eye to that danger. And when Ananias found Saul he did pray for him. The answer to his prayer was immediate. Scripture says that something like scales fell from Saul’s eyes and he could see again.
But it is not until Paul the Apostle wrote to the Philippian church that we see the full confirmation of healthy blindness. He lists all the things in his own life that would be cause for pride and bragging. He sums it all up and says it all belongs on the trash heap. Paul realized his abilities amounted to nothing in God’s sight. God actually wants our weaknesses. In His Word God promises to be strong in our weaknesses.
Can we follow Paul’s example? He had a healthy blindness to all things about himself. His life and his ministry were not about him. All he did was done for the cause of Christ. His eyes were opened to the King and His Kingdom. Like Isaiah and the man in John 9, Paul never forgot the gift of blindness he received. So it’s probably a good idea for us to imitate him and even ask for a good case of healthy blindness!