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Briefing: When you hear the word “investigate” does law enforcement come to mind? Investigate is a law enforcement word. It is very important in our job assignment because it’s what we do. Even though we lay claim to this word it is not exclusive to law enforcement.

Dispatch (Assignment): Read John 9:13-34.

On the Street: In the NIV Study Bible, this group of verses is titled “The Pharisees Investigate the Healing”. As law enforcement officers, we are familiar with investigations. Let’s take a look at how the Pharisees did on their investigation.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines “investigate” as: “to observe or study by close examination and systematic inquiry.” When a law enforcement officer investigates, he/she starts off with an open mind and allows the facts and evidence to lead them to an outcome based on accurate information. Hopefully no one goes into an investigation with a bias or prejudice for anything except finding the truth.

The Pharisees were not trained investigators. They did not investigate Jesus with an open mind, allowing the facts and evidence to lead them to the truth. They had an agenda to see Him and His ministry destroyed.

The primary tool the Pharisees used for their investigation was a litmus test (discussed in an earlier devotional). The only consideration they used in determining Jesus’ guilt or innocence was His works on the Sabbath. We read in John 9:16 (NIV), “Some of the Pharisees said, “This man is not from God, for He does not keep the Sabbath.” But others asked, “How can a sinner do such miraculous signs?” So they were divided.”

During the investigation, the Pharisees question a man who was blind from birth. Their interest in this witness was whether or not Jesus restored his sight. This man’s sight was not fixed or returned; he had never seen. He was either born without eyes or had eyes that never worked. Jesus did not cure this man’s eye sight, He created.

During the questioning, the witness points out the Pharisees are not actually conducting an investigation. He realizes they do not want to hear the truth. In John 9:27 (NIV) the witness answers a question by saying, “I have told you already and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again?” Then in verse 29 the Pharisees admit, “we don’t even know where He comes from.” If the Pharisees were conducting an investigation, why did they not ask or find out where Jesus was from?

The reason they did not know where Jesus came from is because they could not get past the fact that Jesus performed a miracle on the Sabbath. They wrongly assumed He had broken a law. Jesus explains, in Matthew 12:1-14, that performing a miracle on the Sabbath does not break any of God’s laws, it violates a man-made tradition. Jesus is not required to keep man-made traditions.

Instead of recognizing at the miracles Jesus was performing, they were looking for a reason to discredit Him. If they were interested in conducting an accurate investigation, they would have researched the scriptures and compared what Jesus had said and done with what was written about the coming Messiah. Maybe they would have seen that He was who He claimed to be.

As a law enforcement officer, I have to laugh at the “investigation” that was conducted. This was not an investigation; it was a witch hunt. This group of Pharisees was too personally involved in the outcome of the investigation to be able to form an unbiased opinion about Jesus.

Investigational Resources: Conduct your own investigation. Look up the prophesies in the Old Testament concerning the coming of the Messiah and see if Jesus fulfilled them.

Officer Safety Principle: Jesus is God’s Son. Seek the truth and you will find Him.

from The Gospel of John Through the Eyes of a Cop
©by Charles Gilliland. Used by permission.
Click here to check out the entire Through the Eyes of a Cop series!