John Calvin Complete Commentary - John 9:40 - 9:40

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John Calvin Complete Commentary - John 9:40 - 9:40

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40.Some of the Pharisees heard. They instantly perceived that they were smitten by this saying of Christ, and yet they appear not to have belonged to the worst class; for the open enemies had so strong an abhorrence of Christ that they did not at all associate with him. But those men submitted to listen to Christ, yet without any advantage, for no man is qualified to be a disciple of Christ, until he has been divested of self, and they were very far from being so.

Are we also blind? This question arose from indignation, because they thought that they were insulted by being classed with blind men; and, at the same time, it shows a haughty contempt of the grace of Christ accompanied by mockery, as if they had said, “ canst not rise to reputation without involving us in disgrace; and is it to be endured that thou shouldst obtain honor for thyself by upbraiding us? As to the promise thou makest of giving new light to the blind, go hence and leave us with thy benefit; for we do not choose to receive sight from thee on the condition of admitting that we have been hitherto blind. ” Hence we perceive that hypocrisy has always been full of pride and of venom. The pride is manifested by their being satisfied with themselves, and refusing to have any thing taken from them; and the venom, by their being enraged at Christ and arguing with him, because he has pointed out their wound, as if he had inflicted on them a grievous wound. Hence arises contempt of Christ and of the grace which he offers to them.

The word also is emphatic; for it means that, though all the rest be blind, still it is improper that they should be reckoned as belonging to the ordinary rank. It is too common a fault among those who are distinguished above others, that they are intoxicated with pride, and almost forget that they are men.