Mark 8:21-25

Mark 8:21 (KJB)
And he said unto them, How is it that ye do not understand?

(Mat 16:11 KJV) How is it that ye do not understand that I spake it not to you concerning bread, that ye should beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees? Jesus then openly asks them the question concerning the bread. They were looking at the physical aspect of it but Jesus was giving them a spiritual lesson concerning the leaven of the Pharisees. Bread was a staple food for living in ancient times and without it a person could starve to death. It was that important of an item and that is why the disciples concerned themselves with the physical bread. The lesson here is that the Pharisees and Sadducees were so permeated with the leaven of evil, that they lived in that state continually. They never acted out of concern for others but only for themselves and their benefit. Jesus wanted to point that out to the disciples that their calling was to be different than the calling of the Pharisees which was self-centeredness. The disciples were to give themselves to the ministry of the Gospel and were not to concern themselves with themselves because Jesus would supply all their needs wherever He sent them to minister. The Pharisees and Sadducees lived in a perpetual state of greed and that was not to be the Christian mindset. Let us bring that up to today. There are many media ministries and even churches where the pastors make tremendous salaries and are constantly preaching for more. These false pastors live in a state of greed and are fleecing the sheep. We must beware of the leaven of the modern day greed based apostate. After Jesus explained to them again about the two feedings, He asks them again how come they still don’t understand? This is why regeneration is necessary or else we would not be able to spiritually discern anything.

Mark 8:22 (KJB)
And he cometh to Bethsaida; and they bring a blind man unto him, and besought him to touch him.

They finally arrived at Bethsaida Julias which was the capital of the district of Gaulonitis on the Northeast shore of the Sea of Galilee. The name “Bethsaida” means “house of fish or fishing house.” When they had disembarked the ship, some people had brought a blind man to Jesus besought Him just to touch him and he would be able to see again.

Mark 8:23 (KJB)
And he took the blind man by the hand, and led him out of the town; and when he had spit on his eyes, and put his hands upon him, he asked him if he saw ought.

Jesus responds to their request in the affirmative and then took the man outside of town so He could not be accused of desiring notoriety. Remember, at this point Jesus was still seeking to remain anonymous so His enemies would not apprehend Him before the set time. Now Jesus arrives outside of town with the man and spits on his eyes for the purpose of the blind man feeling it. It was a symbolic act and a precursor to him becoming healed. Then Jesus placed His hands upon him, which to a blind person was a gesture of reassurance. The man no doubt had confidence in what Jesus was doing for Him. Then Jesus asks him if he sees anything?

Mark 8:24 (KJB)
And he looked up, and said, I see men as trees, walking.

This is the only miracle that Jesus performed where there was not instantaneous healing. In fact Jesus could just have spoken the word and the man would have been healed. The man responds to the question of Jesus that he sees men with the shapes of trees and they are walking. If they stood still, he probably could not tell the difference. Maybe Jesus was building the faith of the man by seeing his response to the intermediate step in his healing. Jesus may also have been restoring the man’s sight in the same way his sight left him and that was gradually. It may be a lesson to the disciples that if their spiritual understanding did not improve, then they would see things unclearly and would be unable to have proper spiritual understanding and assessments.

Mark 8:25 (KJB)
After that he put his hands again upon his eyes, and made him look up: and he was restored, and saw every man clearly.

This is the second part of the man’s healing. Once he gave Jesus the assessment that he could see men but only as trees, now Jesus places His hands on his eyes again and then told him to look up. Then once the man looked up in an act of faith, his eyesight was fully restored and he now saw everything very clearly. It is like a person who becomes saved, they see things clearly but in a spiritual way. The trees that he saw before were now clearly seen as men. (1 Cor 13:12 KJV) For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. Maybe the intermediate stage of this man’s healing represents the believers as we are today only having partial knowledge and spiritual understanding but when we get to Heaven, we will have perfect understanding. Understanding of why things happened in our lives, why things happened in our friends or family’s life, why God did things in certain ways, etc. We have partial understanding here but in glory we will have perfect understanding.