Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
January 9, 1964
NUMBER 35, PAGE 4,13b

"One Thing I Know...."


This man had been blind from birth. But on a certain glorious day in his life a stranger from Galilee anointed his eyes with clay, told him to go, wash in the pool of Siloam, and when he washed, he received sight. This is a familiar story to most Bible students. The entire ninth chapter of the Gospel of John is given to tell what happened and how. The Pharisees and enemies of Jesus afterward began to pester the healed man with all sorts of questions and comments, trying to get him to make some statement about Jesus, or the miracle, or whether he had been truly healed or not. The poor fellow, obviously a man of simple honesty and candor, unable to grapple with all the involved and complicated questions the Pharisees were firing at him, at last made reply in a statement that was definitive and should have been final: "One thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see."

In this age of confusion and bewilderment, it would be well for all of us to follow the lead of this unnamed disciple. There were many questions he could not answer, many problems he could not solve, many riddles and enigmas and perplexities for which his limited knowledge and circumscribed experience could offer no solution whatever. Any attempt to define, or analyze, or evaluate in these areas would have been futile and fruitless. But there was one area where he could speak with authority; there was one field in which he had absolute certainty — he had been blind, and now he saw! His problem was simple when extraneous things were brushed aside. The astute and sophisticated Pharisees could not argue with a demonstration; they could not controvert the obvious. A man blinded from birth was now seeing. Whatever explanation or rationalization they might offer to satisfy themselves that Jesus was not a prophet could have no effect at all on the demonstration — the man blind from birth was a living witness that a miracle had happened.

In the final analysis, is not this the course that all of us must follow? None of us has, or ever can have, all the answers. There are vast oceans of unanswered questions, unfathomable mysteries, and haunting, elusive secrets and enigmas concerning God, man, heaven, hell — and the past, the present, and the future. The most profound and able Bible student who ever lived could not possibly supply all the answers to the questions we might like to ask. Perhaps this very fact lends encouragement to the confusion and bewilderment which befogs the mind of the race generally. E. Stanley Jones used to tell of a Chinese student, not yet quite at ease with the English language, who filled out a questionnaire card and wrote in the blank which called for his religious preference the word: Confusionism. With that spelling of it, probably Confusionism numerically outranks all religions of the world by overwhelming odds!

And yet, there are some simple truths about which no man ought to have the least bit of confusion or uncertainty. There is a difference, for example, between right and wrong. We may not always be able to tell the difference, and there may be (and often will be) varying degrees of "rightness" and "wrongness" — an undefined area between the two in which values become mixed and distinctions uncertain. But that still does not negate that right and wrong exist — and exist absolutely and not merely relatively.

That the Bible is the word of God, inerrant, infallible, and authoritative, is another of those simple truths which could serve to remove a great host of perplexities for all who are willing to accept it. Here we have a standard for the measurement of ideas and philosophies — and religions. Regardless of the label it wears, the popularity- it commands, the antiquity it claims, or the reasonableness it exhibits, no religion can ever have the distinction of being "right" until it is in harmony with the word of God. Any particular tenet or dogma which it may espouse which is not in harmony with God's truth is false and deceptive — no matter who believes it, how many practice it, or how much it may appeal to "reason and common sense."

If we are to avoid the chaotic confusion into which so many millions of our generation have fallen, if we are to escape the cynicism and despair and ultimate destruction of all spiritual values, if we are to live hopefully, meaningfully, and, in the word of Christ, "abundantly" in this present life, and are to entertain any solid expectation at all for the life to come, it is essential that we anchor our lives to certain simple, basic truths — a few things so basic, so obvious, and so fundamental that no amount of sophistry, worldly wisdom, or human opposition can shake our faith in them or weaken our hold on them. The distinction between right and wrong is one such concept; the authority of the written word of God is another; and the certainty of our final accountability to the God who gave us that word is still another.

We do not have to understand all mysteries and be able to solve all problems of both the mind and spirit in order to live richly and happily upon this earth. But we do have to share the simple convictions, the honest faith, the unswerving sense of certainty on a few basic things which enabled that unnamed man of so long ago to say, "One thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see!" One thing of which we are certain can remove the fear and confusion from a thousand things concerning which we are uncertain!