Friday 5 February 2016


Spiritual blindness, a malady often resistant to treatment, is found even among those who pride themselves as having impressive theological qualifications.

Recently, I watched a video where the speaker said that repentance is not necessary for a person to be saved. He said he should know better since he did his doctorate on the subject of repentance and cannot find any connection between repentance and salvation.

Spiritual blindness, a malady often resistant to treatment, is found even among those who pride themselves as having impressive theological qualifications.

Sad to say, this theologian had plenty of head knowledge but, when it comes to “heart knowledge”, there is little evidence of it. He is spiritually blind. It seems that his great theological “understanding” has caused him to deviate from the truth.

Is it possible to be led astray the deeper one delves into theology? Yes, there is a possibility. We may go “mad” through great learning if we do not stay humble and depend on the Holy Spirit (Acts 26:24).

Clearly, we need to repent (turn from our sins) if we want to enter heaven. The above theologian has clearly departed from the truth.

To gain wisdom and understanding, we need the simple faith of a child: "I tell you the truth, unless you turn from your sins and become like little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven." (Matthew 18:3).

Believers are saved when we trust in Christ. But it does not mean that we can be saved without repenting of our sins.
In my humble opinion, the one with many theological degrees under his belt may not necessarily have spiritual discernment.

It is the Holy Spirit who grants to believers understanding and spiritual discernment:

  • Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.

  • These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

  • But he who is spiritual judges all things, yet he himself is rightly judged by no one.

  • For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct Him? But we have the mind of Christ.

         (1 Corinthians 2:12, 13, 15, 16)

The above example is not an isolated case. Inasmuch as some theologians today may be spiritually blind, the teachers of the law of yesteryear, the scribes and Pharisees, were also afflicted by this malady.

The latter thought that they could please God by following rules and rituals but, sadly, they were mistaken. Being proud, they wanted people to know that they were pious. But Jesus reserved His harshest comments for these hypocrites.

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the others. You blind guides, straining out a gnat and swallowing a camel!
(Matthew 23:23-24).

It is truly a sad state of affairs when those who are supposed to be well-versed with God’s laws are actually spiritually blind.

Sometimes, those with sight can be blind whereas those who are blind manage to gain their sight.

Jesus told the blind man who was healed, “I entered this world to render judgment—to give sight to the blind and to show those who think they see that they are blind.”

Some Pharisees who were standing nearby heard him and asked, “Are you saying we’re blind?”

“If you were blind, you wouldn’t be guilty,” Jesus replied. “But you remain guilty because you claim you can see” (John 9: 39-41).

Humility, teachability and dependence on the Holy Spirit are important prerequisites to acquiring wisdom and knowledge. “If we think we are wise by this world’s standards, we need to become fools in order to be truly wise. The wisdom of the world is foolishness to God” (1 Corinthians 3:18-19).

Let us now look at two more examples of spiritual blindness:

Pre-believers are unable to appreciate the truth because they have been blinded. So when we share the Good News, we will have to pray that the scales be removed from their eyes.
“Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don't believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don't understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God” (2 Corinthians 4:4).

When we are lukewarm and complacent, with hardened conscience, we are deemed as spiritually blind, like the church at Laodicea:
You say, ‘I am rich. I have everything I want. I don’t need a thing!’ And you don’t realise that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked. So I advise you to buy gold from me—gold that has been purified by fire. Then you will be rich. Also buy white garments from me so you will not be shamed by your nakedness, and ointment for your eyes so you will be able to see. 
(Revelation 3:17-18)

Those who remain humble and depend on the Holy Spirit as they study scriptures are able to see. And it is not necessarily related to our position in church or the number of theological degrees we hold.

The blessedness of being able to see is spelt out in the following passage.
Indeed, in their case the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled that says:
You will indeed hear but never understand,
    and you will indeed see but never perceive.
For this people's heart has grown dull,
    and with their ears they can barely hear,
    and their eyes they have closed,
lest they should see with their eyes
    and hear with their ears
and understand with their heart
    and turn, and I would heal them.
But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear. For truly, I say to you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.
(Matthew 13:14-17)

Lastly, the ability to see is also related to purity. “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God” (Matthew 5:8).


Believers are saved when we trust in Christ. But does it mean that we can be saved without repenting?

Is the impact we make in this world directly proportional to the number of theological degrees we have under our belt?

When believers study the Word, they are guided into the truth by the Holy Spirit who is our Teacher. If that is so, do they still need to depend on teachers or other members in the body?

Why it’s easy to be fooled without realising you’ve been had.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. In these end times, some learned “believers” with impressive theological qualifications are spiritually blind. And some illustrious leaders who peddle the gospel for their own selfish ends are spiritually poor.
    What truly matters is not how we see ourselves but what God thinks of us: “For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realising that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked” (Revelation 3:17)