Places Of Repentance | Sojourners

Places Of Repentance


I was blind, now I see.—John 9:25

There is a terror connected with blindness. I suspected it first as a child when perspiration beaded my brow as I snuggled under covers, scared of the dark. We confirm its panic as adults when the electricity fails and we scramble for candles and flashlights to steer us back to familiar shapes and objects. We learn at these times that we are shattered pieces of confidence, easily disoriented, frightened, and eager to claim the security of light.

Given those inclinations, it is hard to believe that anyone would choose the bewildering darkness of being blind. Scripture says some do. "They loved darkness rather than light, for everyone who does evil hates the light" (John 3:19, 20).

The Bible talks about a spiritual blindness every bit as real as the physical kind and infinitely worse in its consequences. The ultimate tragedy of spiritual blindness is that a person resists self-knowledge and prefers faking it. Concealment, pretense, and dissimulation become choice, habit, and lifestyle.

This is how it is when we become entangled in evil or sin: we are no longer moved by the things that once caused us remorse, we are unable to be self-critical, we become less and less aware of our culpability, and we judge ourselves among the upper echelons of those saved and justified who do not need repentance. We strain to have it both ways—continuing in our sin and claiming wholeness—but sin governs us, and we live fraudulently. John put it bluntly: "If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie" (1 John 1:6).

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