Notes, Now I See

Study Guide

Now I See

Newbreak’s Sermon Study Guide is an in-house resource that serves sermon-based Life Groups and/or individuals who want to reflect further on how the message contributes to their spiritual formation.

About This Sermon Series

Year after year one of the most searched-for questions on Google is “Who is Jesus?” Whether we know it or not all of our deepest longings point us to the person who lived 2,000 years ago in Israel. The Gospel of John invites us to “come and see” who this Jesus is and how he is the one in whom we find life.

About this week's sermon:

Have you ever looked back at a painful season and gained perspective on how God was doing something profound even if you couldn’t see it at the time? Hardships have a way of blinding us to what God is doing amid a trying time. Join us as we rethink how our hardships reveal God within our God story!

Icebreakers for Life Groups

  1. What do you do with your time when football season is over? How did the season go for you?
  2. If there’s one thing you could see again for the first time, what would it be and why?

Let’s read John 9:1-11

As he was passing by, he saw a man blind from birth. 2 His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”
3 “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” Jesus answered. “This came about so that God’s works might be displayed in him. 4 We must do the works of him who sent me while it is day. Night is coming when no one can work. 5 As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”
6 After he said these things he spit on the ground, made some mud from the saliva, and spread the mud on his eyes. 7 “Go,” he told him, “wash in the pool of Siloam” (which means “Sent”). So he left, washed, and came back seeing.
8 His neighbors and those who had seen him before as a beggar said, “Isn’t this the one who used to sit begging?” 9 Some said, “He’s the one.” Others were saying, “No, but he looks like him.”
He kept saying, “I’m the one.”
10 So they asked him, “Then how were your eyes opened?”
11 He answered, “The man called Jesus made mud, spread it on my eyes, and told me, ‘Go to Siloam and wash.’ So when I went and washed I received my sight.”

Point 1 – Allow God to reveal his light through my life’s hardships.

One of the things I love about this passage is that Jesus sees this blind man (vs. 1). It’s so easy when we’re enduring hard situations, especially for long periods of time, to believe that our good God even sees us. Sometimes we may think that He’s forgotten us. He has to watch and care for billions of people. Maybe I just got lost in the shuffle. But that’s not the truth of the character of God. Scripture tells us that “The Lord is gracious and righteous; our God is full of compassion.” Psalms 116:5, NIV

How amazing must it have been to be seen and noticed by Jesus? This man faced so many hardships in life. This man was blind from birth. This would have been a very hard life for him. He would have had to beg for income. He would have had to rely on the generosity of others just for his daily bread. And so he did. In the sad, in the lonely, in the lowly existence, he continued to live each day waiting for what would come next. He couldn’t possibly have imagined that what would come next would be Jesus, the Messiah!

This man’s next step was integral to his healing. When Jesus spat in the dirt, made mud and then put it on this blind beggar’s eyes, the man did not recoil. He didn’t wipe it off. He did exactly what Jesus told him to do even though it might not have made sense to him at the time. He was healed because in the midst of the pain he listened to the voice of the only One who could heal him. When we’re in pain, emotionally, physically, or mentally, we need to remember to listen to the leading of God, to give over the anger or resentment, so that we can hear what He wants us to do to be healed.

Questions for Group Discussion or Personal Reflection

  1. Is there something you are struggling with right now that seems to be unchanging? Does it seem as if God is not moving in this area? What would it look like for you to give any anger or resentment about your situation to Him today?
  2. Where have you seen Jesus show up in previous painful situations, either in your own life or in the lives of others? What did you learn about God through that process?
  3. Jesus did something unique when he used mud to heal the blind man. Can you think of any other times in the Bible when God asked someone to do something that seems strange to us but God used it to bring Himself glory? Why do you think God sometimes asks us to do things that don’t make sense to us at the time?

Continue reading John 9:30-41

30 “This is an amazing thing!” the man told them. “You don’t know where he is from, and yet he opened my eyes. 31 We know that God doesn’t listen to sinners, but if anyone is God-fearing and does his will, he listens to him.32 Throughout history no one has ever heard of someone opening the eyes of a person born blind. 33 If this man were not from God, he wouldn’t be able to do anything.”
34 “You were born entirely in sin,” they replied, “and are you trying to teach us?” Then they threw him out.
35 Jesus heard that they had thrown the man out, and when he found him, he asked, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?”
36 “Who is he, Sir, that I may believe in him?” he asked.
37 Jesus answered, “You have seen him; in fact, he is the one speaking with you.”
38 “I believe, Lord!” he said, and he worshiped him.
39 Jesus said, “I came into this world for judgment, in order that those who do not see will see and those who do see will become blind.”
40 Some of the Pharisees who were with him heard these things and asked him, “We aren’t blind too, are we?”
41 “If you were blind,” Jesus told them, “you wouldn’t have sin. But now that you say, ‘We see,’ your sin remains.

Point 2 - Let God turn my test into my testimony.

Instead of the Jewish leaders embracing this man’s miracle, they rejected it because it was done on the Sabbath (John 9:13-16). The blind man went to the synagogue and was questioned repeatedly about what Jesus did for him. He was accused of being someone else, of making up the story, of not really being blind and yet he stood firm and answered respectfully all the questions asked of him (John 9:17-34). He was able to give an answer for the hope that he had in Christ Jesus (1 Peter 3:15).

In verses 35–39, Jesus did a second miracle for the blind man. He had already opened his eyes (physically) but now Jesus wanted to open his eyes spiritually. The healed man’s response to the call of God is a template for ours: “I believe, Lord!” and he worshiped him (vs. 38). To worship Jesus is the most appropriate response to seeing the hand of God in our life!

For the rest of this man’s life, he will be the only man who was “blind but now he sees” (vs.32-33). This man’s blindness (his past problem) became his platform to proclaim the works of Christ (his present and future hope)!

We all have a God story, and if we allow God to work in us, then our deepest place of pain can become our platform to share about God’s goodness. Let the transforming work of Jesus become the platform in your life for your testimony of Him to others.

God’s glory is also displayed in our lives when God uses us and what we have made it through to bring comfort to others. In 2 Corinthians 1:4, Paul invites us to praise God because God “comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” The work of God in our lives is meant to help support and build up the whole body of Christ. We can do this by allowing others to see what God has done for us in the midst of the pain of our lives.

Questions for Group Discussion or Personal Reflection

  1. Have you ever faced a time in your life when you felt discarded and misunderstood because of your faith in Jesus? How did you manage the tension and hurt?
  2. Who in your life could be comforted right now because of how God has redeemed your pain?
  3. When is the last time you shared what God has done in your life with another person? What part of your God story could you share to bring hope to another person?

About Our Current Sermon Series

Year after year one of the most searched-for questions on Google is “Who is Jesus?” Whether we know it or not all of our deepest longings point us to the person who lived 2,000 years ago in Israel. The Gospel of John invites us to “come and see” who this Jesus is and how he is the one in whom we find life.