John 9:30
The man answered and said unto them, Why herein is a marvellous thing, that ye know not from whence he is, and yet he hath opened mine eyes.
Jump to: AlfordBarnesBengelBensonBICalvinCambridgeChrysostomClarkeDarbyEllicottExpositor'sExp DctExp GrkGaebeleinGSBGillGrayGuzikHaydockHastingsHomileticsICCJFBKellyKingLangeMacLarenMHCMHCWMeyerParkerPNTPoolePulpitSermonSCOTeedTTBVWSWESTSK
(30) Why herein is a marvellous thing.—Several of the better MSS. read more emphatically, the marvellous thing. He again puts two contradictory positions—their assertion that they knew not by what authority Jesus did these things (whence He was), and the evident fact that He had opened his eyes. He cannot reconcile their statement with what he knows to be true, and he states his wonder in the strongest form.

That ye know not from whence he isi.e., ye whose business it is to know, ye who claim for yourselves a special knowledge of all such questions, and whose duty it is to inquire into the authority of any one who asserts that he is a teacher or a prophet. (Comp. Note on John 1:24.)

John 9:30-34. The man answered — Utterly illiterate as he was: and with what strength and clearness of reason! So had God opened the eyes of his understanding, as well as his bodily eyes! Why, herein is a marvellous thing, that ye — The teachers and guides of the people; know not whence he is — From whence he comes, and who hath sent him; and yet he hath opened mine eyes — Hath wrought a miracle, the like of which was never heard of before. Surely a man who could do such a thing must be from heaven, must be sent of God. It was esteemed by the Jews a peculiar sign of the Messiah, that he should open the eyes of the blind, that is, of those born blind; a miracle never known to be wrought by Moses or any of the prophets. Now we know — Even we of the populace know; God heareth not sinners — Impenitent sinners who continue in sin, so as to answer their prayers in this manner, and assist them to perform such astonishing miracles; which, without his assistance, and that communicated in a very extraordinary degree, could not possibly have been performed. But if any man be a worshipper of God, and do his will — If any man truly worship and serve him; him he heareth — Answereth his prayers, and that sometimes, probably, in a singular sense. Since the world began, &c. — That is, from the beginning of the world; it was never heard, that any man — Who was not a worshipper of God, and a doer of his will, that is, any sinner, any impostor; opened the eyes of one that was born blind. If this man were not of God — Were not sent of God; if he were not a prophet and messenger of God; he could do nothing — Thus the beggar, though illiterate, answered that great body of learned men with such strength of reason, that they had not a word to reply. However, the evidence of his arguments had no other effect but to put them into a passion; insomuch that they railed at him, saying, Thou wast altogether born in sins, and dost thou teach us — Thou wicked, illiterate, impudent fellow, whose understanding continues still as blind as thy body was, and who wast born under the heaviest punishment of sin, dost thou pretend to instruct us in a matter of this kind? Us, who are the guides of the people, and eminent for our skill in the law? The reproach, Thou wast altogether born in sins, proceeded from the same general principle from which the question of the disciples arose, (John 9:2,) Who did sin, this man or his parents? They inferred from his being born blind, that he was in some peculiar way born in sins. And they cast him out — That is, passed the sentence of excommunication upon him, which was the highest punishment in their power to inflict. From this account we learn, that a plain man, void of the advantages of learning and education, but who has an upright disposition, is in a fairer way to understand the truth, than a whole council of learned doctors, who are under the power of prejudice, and of an earthly mind, lovers of wealth, honour, and pleasure, rather than lovers of God.

9:24-34 As Christ's mercies are most valued by those who have felt the want of them, that have been blind, and now see; so the most powerful and lasting affections to Christ, arise from actual knowledge of him. In the work of grace in the soul, though we cannot tell when, and how, and by what steps the blessed change was wrought, yet we may take the comfort, if we can say, through grace, Whereas I was blind, now I see. I did live a worldly, sensual life, but, thanks be to God, it is now otherwise with me, Eph 5:8. The unbelief of those who enjoy the means of knowledge and conviction, is indeed marvellous. All who have felt the power and grace of the Lord Jesus, wonder at the wilfulness of others who reject him. He argues strongly against them, not only that Jesus was not a sinner, but that he was of God. We may each of us know by this, whether we are of God or not. What do we? What do we for God? What do we for our souls? What do we more than others?A marvelous thing - This is wonderful and amazing.

Know not from whence he is - That you cannot perceive that he who has performed such a miracle must be from God.

30. The man answered, Herein is a marvellous thing, that ye know not from whence he is, and yet he hath opened mine eyes—He had no need to say another word; but waxing bolder in defense of his Benefactor, and his views brightening by the very courage which it demanded, he puts it to them how they could pretend inability to tell whether one who opened the eyes of a man born blind was "of God" or "a sinner"—from above or from beneath—and proceeds to argue the case with remarkable power. So irresistible was his argument that their rage burst forth in a speech of intense Pharisaism, "Thou wast altogether born in sins, and dost thou teach us?"—thou, a base-born, uneducated, impudent youth, teach us, the trained, constituted, recognized guides of the people in the things of God! Out upon thee! The opening of the eyes of the blind without the application of means rationally probable for the producing such an effect, nay, by the application of means which to all human reason seemed of a quite contrary tendency; and this cure wrought upon one who was not blind by some accidental cause, but by some defect in nature, who had been so from his mother’s womb, was so manifest an effect of the Divine power, as this poor man was astonished at it, that they should not understand that it was done by such a power, either immediately or mediately; especially considering the prophecy concerning the Messias, Isaiah 35:5,6, to which Christ refers John and his disciples for an evidence of it, Matthew 11:5.

The man answered and said unto them,.... Very appropriately and pertinently,

why herein is a marvellous thing; strange and unaccountable,

that ye know not from whence he is; that you learned doctors, men of sagacity and penetration, should not be able to discern that this man is of God, is a prophet sent by him, and that there should be any doubt from whence he comes, or from whom he has his commission:

and yet he hath opened mine eyes; which was so clearly and plainly the work of the Messiah, and to be done by him when he came, Isaiah 35:4.

The man answered and said unto them, Why herein is a marvellous thing, that ye know not from whence he is, and yet he hath opened mine eyes.
John 9:30-33. The passionateness of the Jews now emboldens the man to make a further confession (John 9:17).

ἐν γὰρ τούτῳ τὸ (see the critical notes) θαυμ. ἐστιν] Why, herein (in this state of the case) is a marvellous thing, that ye know not from whence He is, and (that) He hath opened mine eyes. The force of the θαυμαστόν lies in καὶ ἀνέῳξε, etc., in virtue of the groundless nature of that ignorance to which actual testimony was thus borne; see John 9:31-33. Concerning a man who has done that, ye ought surely to know, etc. γάρ, “respicit ad ea, quae alter antea dixerat, et continet cum affirmatione conclusionem, quae ex rebus ita comparatis facienda sit,” Klotz, ad Devar. p. 242. Comp. on 1 Corinthians 11:22. It is often thus used, especially when “miratio rei aut aliorum incredulitatis adsignificatur,” Ellendt, Lex. Soph. I. p. 332. Comp. Xen. Mem. iv. 2. 6.

ὑμεῖς] Ye people, who ought to know this best.

John 9:31. The man now proves to them, onwards to John 9:33, how clearly it is evident from the act of Jesus that He is no sinner (John 9:16), but a pious man, yea, a man sent of God. He begins his proof with a major premiss, which he postulates as universally conceded and known (οἴδαμεν, Job 27:9; Job 35:13; Psalm 66:18; Psalm 109:7; Proverbs 15:29; Isaiah 1:15), and which rests on the idea that miracles are answers to prayer (comp. John 11:41 ff.; Mark 7:34). A sufficient reason for not assuming that Jesus actually pronounced a prayer aloud in performing the miracle (as Ewald thinks), is the silence of John, who would scarcely have omitted this detail from a narrative so minute as this. John 9:32. Minor premiss; then in John 9:33, conclusion, both in popular form.

οὐδέν] effect nothing—is restricted by the connection to miraculous deeds such as the one here recorded.

John 9:30. This, in the face of the miracle, seems to the man a surprising statement: Ἐν γὰρ τούτῳ, “why, herein is that which is marvellous”. τὸ θαυμαστόν is the true reading. For the use of γάρ in rejoinders see Winer, p. 559, and Klotz, p. 242. It seems to imply an entire repudiation of what has just been said: “You utter an absurdity, for …” The marvel was that they should hesitate about the origin of one who had such power as was manifest in the cure wrought on him.

30. a marvellous thing] Some of the best MSS. read ‘the marvellous thing.’ ‘You, the very people who ought to know such things (John 3:10), know not whether He is from God or not, and yet He opened my eyes.’ ‘You’ is emphatic, and perhaps is a taunting rejoinder to their ‘we know that this man is a sinner’ (John 9:24) and ‘we know that God hath spoken to Moses’ (John 9:29). The man gains courage at their evident discomfiture.

John 9:30. Ἐν γὰρ τούτῳ [why herein], for in this) So ἐν γὰρ τούτῳ, for in this, ch. John 4:37 [And herein is that saying true.—Engl. Vers.] γαρ, such being the case [videlicet], at times adds a graceful effect to a reply.—θαυμαστόν, a marvellous thing) Answering to we know not, John 9:29. To be ignorant and to wonder, are closely allied.—πόθεν, whence) namely, from God: John 9:33, “If a man were not of God he could do nothing:” John 9:16, “This man is not of God.”[262]

[262] The man’s words, John 9:33, are opposed to these words of theirs, John 9:16.—E. and T.

Verse 30. - The man answered and said to them, Why herein is the marvelous thing. Lange translates, "With respect to this man, this is marvelous, to wit." The R.T. has accurately given the force of the γὰρ, the combination of γε and ἄρα, by the rendering "why?" The "herein" is the ignorance which the Jews now profess of the Divine call and mission of the Healer. Their confusion, their obscurity, their vacillation, on such a patent fact is the marvel of marvels, almost more wonderful than the cure of his blindness. That ye know not whence he is, and (yet) he opened my eyes (καί not infrequently has the three of "and yet" - simple juxtaposition conveying a strong contrast; see John 8:55; John 6:70; John 7:4). The man rises into holy and eloquent wrath. Their entire history, their principles of judging of a prophetic call, the whole modus of Divine revelation, ought to have shown that one whose simple will stood in such vivid juxtaposition with work which none but Almighty God could do, ought to have enlightened them. "The blind man, finding he was argued with, grew bolder, and began to argue in turn; if he had not studied theology (say rabbinical casuistry and Mishnaic accretions to the Divine Law), he at least knew his catechism" (Godet). John 9:30A marvelous thing (θαυμαστόν)

The correct reading adds the article, the marvel. So Rev.

Ye know not

Ye is emphatic: ye who might be expected to know about a man who has wrought such a miracle.

And yet (καὶ)

See on John 8:20; see on John 1:10.

John 9:30 Interlinear
John 9:30 Parallel Texts

John 9:30 NIV
John 9:30 NLT
John 9:30 ESV
John 9:30 NASB
John 9:30 KJV

John 9:30 Bible Apps
John 9:30 Parallel
John 9:30 Biblia Paralela
John 9:30 Chinese Bible
John 9:30 French Bible
John 9:30 German Bible

Bible Hub

John 9:29
Top of Page
Top of Page