Opening of the Eyes of the Blind Man (Mark 8:22-26). They came to Bethsaida where Jesus heals a
blind man. But significantly, it takes two acts to open His eyes to see clearly. This is the only recorded
“gradual” miracle of Jesus. Why? In order to show its parabolic meaning. This man had lost his sight
since he could recognize trees. Hence, the healing was a restoration of sight. In Scripture, sight is a
metaphor for spiritual understanding. When Adam sinned in the Garden, he became spiritually blinded
and passed that blindness on to all his descendants. Hence, every human desperately needs Jesus’ miracle
of restoration of sight.
The miracle also signified that Israel would need two touches (both advents) of Christ to clearly see Him.
It also demonstrated the disciples’ slowness in recognizing God’s purpose for Christ, which immediately
becomes evident with Peter.
Peter’s Receives Spiritual Sight (Matthew 16:13-20; Mark 8:27-30; Luke 9:18-21). Christ traveled
northward toward Mt. Hermon until He came to the region of Caesarea Philippi. The crowds were
confused about Jesus. Some thought He was John the Baptizer, others though He was Elijah, Jeremiah,
or one of the prophets. There He questioned the Twelve: “Who do you say I am?” Simon Peter
answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus reveals that no one can make this
confession apart from the revelation of the Father (after His ascension, this revelation comes through the
Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:3).
The Rock is Christ. The keys refer to Peter’s stewardship in the kingdom. He will use them to open the
door of faith (Acts 14:27) to the Jews (Acts 2), the Samaritans (Acts 8), and the Gentiles (Acts 10).
Binding and loosing refers to church discipline. Peter never claimed to be Pope (see 1 Peter 5:1-4). This
is the first mention of “Church” in the NT.