Pretending to be a Doctor
Jesus said to them, “If you were blind, you would have no guilt; but now that you say, ‘We see,’ your guilt remains.” John 9:41
If my kids go their mother with some medical question – such as a rash on a foot – and she doesn’t know the answer, it’s OK for her to tell them, “Go ask your father”. She doesn’t claim to be a physician and thus, is not expected to have all the answers. When the question comes to me though, I need to have an answer. If I were to say, “I don’t know. Go ask your mother”, my medical expertise would be severely doubted. If I claim to be a physician, I need to act like one. If I fail to act like one, then I’m a pretender.
It might be amusing with my kids and a foot rash, but this issue of pretending has parallels to a far more serious problem which Jesus addressed in today’s passage. In the story, Jesus said he came that the blind may see and that those who think they see may be blinded. The Pharisees, listening in, sensed he was talking about them, and sarcastically asked, “Are we also blind (John 9:40)?”
Jesus told them that if they were truly blind, they wouldn’t be at fault. If they knew they couldn’t see, they would seek assistance – Jesus had literally just healed a blind man in the story. In their state, though the Pharisees were spiritually blind, they remained ignorant of their blindness and thus, wouldn’t seek help. Jesus blasted them for claiming to be the religious elite, leading others, while they themselves were absolutely lost.
This is a problem for us as Christians. Because we claim to be followers of Christ, we tend to assume we’re on the narrow path. The problem isn’t that God misleads us. The problem is that often, we don’t follow, but because we’re so confident in our claim to faith, we remain blind to our missteps. We call ourselves Christians, while living for ourselves, no differently than anyone else.
Jesus said that if I claim to follow him, I must live like it. Do I follow God, or am I like the Pharisees, claiming to be something I’m not? Honestly, some days, I feel like a pretender. Thankfully, in Christ, there is always forgiveness for my failures. If I call myself a Christian though, I must continue to work at abandoning self, obeying God, and loving those around me.