Q: “I’ve read Mark 8:22-25 and was wondering why Jesus had to touch the man’s eyes twice to bring about complete healing?”
A: Everyone has their own take on this miracle. Clearly, there are two different types of blindness, physical and spiritual. It has been pointed out that in the Old Testament there is no record of a blind person being miraculously healed. The first recorded miracle of the healing of the physically blinded happened in Jesus’ ministry. It is clear that Jesus came to give sight to the blind, but the real important sight that the Lord came to give had to do with spiritual blindness (Luke 4:18).
The Apostle Paul talked about how the god of this age has blinded people to the real Gospel, and that the Lord came to take the veil away from our eyes so we can see the glorious light of the Gospel (2 Corinthians 3:14; 4:3-4). Another interesting aspect about blindness is that even when we as believers have the veil taken from our eyes through salvation, we still see spiritually through a glass darkly because we are in a physical body (1 Corinthians 13:12).
My take on this particular incident is that Jesus was addressing both types of blindness. Let us consider the different details about this incident. The blind man came to Jesus seeking a touch from Him. According to this request the man was simply seeking some type of touch from the Lord and did not specifically ask for healing in relationship to his blindness. Granted, the Lord knew he was blind, but the Lord often asked those seeking Him, “What would ye have me do for you” (Mark 10:36)?
This blind man was clear about receiving a touch from Him, and the Lord led the man out of town, and what did He do? He touched him by spitting on his eyes and then putting His hands on him. The description of this event has always made me stop and ponder Jesus’ handling of it. It is fascinating to think the Lord’s DNA, which was in his spit, first touched this man’s eyes. The DNA would definitely record Jesus’ link to humanity and His distinct lineage, but how would deity be coded into His human DNA?
Here comes some interesting comparisons. Jesus’ humanity first touched this man’s eyes and then He put His hands upon his eyes and asked him what he saw. When the blind man looked up he saw something, he saw men as trees, walking. The Bible relates to men as being like trees (Psalm 1:3; 37:35; 52:8).
As Christians we need to keep in mind that we are limited as to what we see as far as spiritual matters. We see only in part because we are sometimes blinded by a physical world and hindered by our limited light of understanding. In our physical bodies we do not clearly see spiritual matters. We are initially touched by man’s understanding, but it is limited and cannot bring a completion to a matter.
The next thing Jesus did was put His hands again upon the man’s eyes. The spit represented humanity but the hands represented the touch of deity. Jesus came as man, but His humanity veiled His deity. Clearly man encounters the humanity of Christ first, but it is the touch of deity on a matter that will always secure a complete healing. After Jesus’ second touch, the man could see with clarity. We know that humanity may have the medical means to bring about healing to some eye problems but will prove limited in other cases, but is completely incapable of bringing about healing to spiritual blindness. Spiritual eyesight only comes by way of a matter being unveiled to our spirit by Deity, the Holy Spirit.
Once again this is my take on the matter. I have learned years ago recorded Biblical events will affect people differently, because it will be based on where they are in their walk and spiritual growth. However, I hope this gives you an edifying take on this event.