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Medicine for the Weak Eyes

Updated on March 7, 2020
OGUNDARE OLUSEGUN profile image

Studying the bible is always good. For years, I have been studying the bible and I found it wonderful

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Introduction

It is scientifically known that when one grows, the muscles of the eye and indeed that of the body grows older too and become weakened. However, this is more pronounced in the eyes for the vital role it is performing in the animal’s body, most importantly that of humans.

As these muscles becomes affected, other structures of the eyeballs are not left unaffected too which essentially resulted in poor vision for humans. To correct this one would go to the ophthalmologists for examination, tests and other screenings to rule out what is wrong with the eyes and what could be done to bring those eyeballs back to near normal if not normal.

Jesus while talking with his beloved, Apostle John, about many things in the book of Revelation talks of the seven churches in Asia and he made mention of one thing about the church of Laodicean which I would live we examine in this article.

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Briefly on the Author of this Book: John the Beloved

e-Sword in her commentary has this about John the beloved. Unanimously it is believed that John, was the writer of this book and gospel according to John with three epistles. He was the son of Zebedee, a fisherman of Bethsaida, and Salome was his mother. (compare Mat 10:2; with Mat 27:55-56 and Mar 15:40). He was the brother of James the elder whom “Herod killed with sword” (Act 12:2)

Theophylact says that Salome was the daughter of Joseph, the husband of Mary, by a former wife; and that subsequently she was our Lord’s sister, and John was his nephew. He was doing his father’s occupation till his call to the apostleship (Mat. 4:21-22; Mar. 1:19-20; Luk. 5:1-10), which is hypothetical to have been when he was about twenty-five years of age; after which he was a continual eyewitness of our Lord’s labours, journeyings, discourses, miracles, passion, crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension.

After the ascension of our Lord he was with others in Jerusalem during the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost, by which he was eminently qualified for the office of an Evangelist and Apostle.

Mary the Mother of Christ perhaps died fifteen years after the crucifixion and presumably after the council held in Jerusalem around AD 49 or 50 (Acts 15). He was present there. After this incident he was said to move to Asia Minor where he formed and presided over 7 churches but chiefly living in Ephesus.

Around AD 95 which was the fifteenth year of the reign of Domitian he was banished to isle of Patmos in the Agean sea, where he wrote the book of Revelation (Apocalypse (Rev. 1:9))

The following year when Nerva assumes the throne, he recalled him from exile and he returned to his base, Ephesus, where he wrote his Gospel and Epistles. He died when he was hundred years old about AD 100 which was the third year of emperor Trajan.

It is generally believed that he was the youngest of the twelve apostles and that he survived the rest.

Jerome, in his comment on Gal VI., says that he continued preaching when so debilitated with age as to be obliged to be carried into the assembly; and that, not being able to deliver any long discourse, his norm was to say in every meeting, “my dear children, love one another”.

According to the general belief of the ancient writers it was said that he wrote his Gospel at an advanced age, thus we may say with others like Chrysostom, Epiphanius, Mill, Lev. Clerc, that this happened when he was 97.

His method of writing is said to be supplying those important events which other Evangelists had omitted and to and to disprove the notions of the Cerinthians and Nicolaitans, or according to others, to counter the heresy of the Gnostics and Sabians.

It is true that many parts of his Gospel have been quoted against weird doctrines held by those sects, yet the apostle had clearly a more general end in view than the confutation of their heresies. His own words satisfactorily inform us of his purpose and design in writing this Gospel: “these things are written that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing, ye might have life through his name” (Joh. 20:31).

Academic men are not absolutely sure concerning the language in which this Gospel was firstly written. Salmasius, Grotius, and other writers, have imagined that St. John wrote it in his own native tongue, the Aramean or Syriac, and that it was afterwards translated into Greek. This opinion is not supported by any strong arguments, and is contradicted by the unanimous voice of antiquity, which affirms that he wrote it in Greek, which is the general and most probable opinion.

The language which was used in writing does not change what the author wants to pass across which is the hidden truths not addressed both an affirmative proposition and a negative. It is manifestly not without design that he commonly passes over those passages of our Lord’s history and teaching which had been treated at large by other Evangelists, or if he touches them at all, he touches them but slightly, whilst he records many miracles which had been overlooked by the rest, and expatiates on the sublime doctrines of the pre-existence, the divinity, and the incarnation of the Word, the great ends of His mission, and the blessings of His purchase.

Modern Day Location of Laodicea in Turkey

Laodicean in Brief

It is a city founded probably by Antiochus II around 261-247 BC, and named by him Laodicea, after his wife Laodice. It was the chief of Phrygia Pacatiana, in Asia Minor, and was situated a little south of Colossae and Hierapolis, on the river Lycos, a tributary of the Meander. It manufactured cloth and garments from the black wool produced by a breed of sheep in its vicinity; and it was the seat of a medical school, whose physicians prepared Phrygian powder for the cure of ophthalmia. It numbered many Jews among its inhabitants. Epaphras labored there (Col. 4:12-13) and is regarded as the founder of its Christian church. Paul desires that he sees the brethren there and others who have not seen his face, thence he sent salutations to them and wrote them a letter which is presumed that its only copy was left at Laodicea (Col. 2:1; 4:15-16).

Some however posited that the Letter to the Laodiceans is the letter written to the Ephesians, because Laodicea was one of the 7 churches in Asia as could be found in the book of Revelation. (Rev. 1:11; 3:14-22)

The church was rebuked, and the contents of the rebuke was said to be directly proportional to their products and their wealth which they were well known of then..

About the year 60 AD Laodicea, Colossae and Hierapolis were destroyed by earthquake.

The citizens rebuilt Laodicea out of their own resources, without the customary aid from Rome. Its ruins still exist at a place called Eski Hissar which is 3 miles to the south of this site in Denizlu, to which the inhabitants moved in the 14th century on account of frequent earthquakes at the former site. (From The New Westminster Dictionary of the Bible)

Online Wikipedia says Laodicea in Greek is Λαοδίκεια πρὸς τοῦ Λύκου, while in Latin it is Laodicea ad Lycum which is transliterated as Laodiceia or Laodikeia in Turkish. It was an ancient city built on the river Lycus (Çürüksu) which is located in the Hellenistic regions of Caria and Lydia that were later absorbed into Roman Province. It is now situated near modern city of Denizli, Turkey. In 2013, the archaeological site was inscribed in the tentative list of world heritage sites in Turkey.

Originally the town was called Diospolis, “city of Zeus” and after wards Rhodas.

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Examining the Statement

Having seen few things about the author and the town, let us see a portion of what was said by Jesus against the Laodicea church which I want to write on in this article.

I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. (Rev 3:18)

They were admonished to buy eyesalve with which they would anoint their eyes so that they would be able to see.

Were They Blind?

This test does not say they were blind, but the previous test has shown that they were blind. They were not physically blind, but they were spiritually because of what they possess which makes their inner man not to be seeing the God who has redeemed them again.

Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: (Rev 3:17)

God uses the physical to tell them about their spiritual status. Using that, it is being said that when the eyes have problems then the entire body is in problems because eyes is the light of the body.

The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. (Mat 6:22)

The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light; but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darkness. (Luk 11:34)

Therefore, since their eyes have been in problem, it is logical to say from this Jesus utterance that their entire body is also in problems.

Causes of their Blindness

It is vital to know that they have been seeing well before, but along the line something happened which makes them not to see properly again, which brings blurred vision along their paths. Worryingly, they did not consider this to be important since they are still partially seeing. The muscles of their eyes have been weakened which makes them not to see well again and failure to see well is considered blindness by God.

The old people would consider this to be true, you who can see anything in the dark before, but as age advances you discover that you cannot see well in the dark again, neither can you read minute words under small illumination. When in this position and people fail to admit it quick, they make mistakes in some things which makes them to rush to the ophthalmologists for corrective measures.

This was their position, they did not consider what happened important, and God was telling them that errors lie at their doorsteps else they quickly correct this.

1. Pride

One of the things that weakened the muscles of their eyes preventing them to see well is the pride of their hearts. As we shall recall that King Uzziah also did started well, obeying the words of the law by all standards and with all he had, but as soon as his heart became lifted he couldn’t see well again, he started having blurring vision, the muscles of the eyes became weakened and this progresses until he made regrettable error that banished him from among the people into the wilderness, into the solitary place to be living in.

But when he was strong, his heart was lifted up to his destruction: for he transgressed against the LORD his God, and went into the temple of the LORD to burn incense upon the altar of incense. (2 Ch 26:16)

2. Wealth

As we can see from the history about the town, we shall see that they had wealth, they are productive and because everything they lay their hands upon prospers, they tend to consider lightly the position of God in all their dealings. Is this not true of us too? When some of us become mighty and all we lay our hands upon succeeds thereby we tend to see what happens to us as the products of our labors and think little about the influence of God in all we are doing.

3. Successes

John W. Ritenbaugh says, gold, clothing and eyesalve represents the three major industries of Laodicea which are banking, textiles and medicine. Their successes cut across all they are doing in the land, this indubitably enters their head preventing them to see God in the right perspectives again.

Successes, achievements have a way of blocking and damaging our spiritual eye sights. That was what happened to prophetess Miriam and Aaron when the confronted Prophet Moses harshly on the way to the promised land of why he married the Ethiopian woman. (Num 12)

4. They Were Familiar With God

Sometimes familiarity brings contempt and that was what happened with the people. They have been familiar with God such that they took his grace for them for granted that he will not do anything even if they go against his words, even if they do not do what they ought to do.

We should not allow our familiarity with God to allow us to say as High Priest Eli said that it is God let him do whatever he wants.

And Samuel told him every whit, and hid nothing from him. And he said, it is the LORD: let him do what seemeth him good. (1 Sa 3:18)

The high Priest was so familiar with Yahweh that he underestimated him, that he did not think about what he can do, and he did what he never thought would be done as he ended his life badly.

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The summation of these affected the muscles of their spiritual eyes weakening the muscles and prevented them from seeing as they should while some in the real sense became blind for it is being said that when some eye diseases are not attended to early it could degenerate into absolute blindness for people. This was what happened.

Shall we thence see what the eyesalve means?

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The Eyesalve

The eyesalve in Greek word is written as “κολλούριον”, the Romanized form is kollourion (pronounced as kol-loo'-ree-on) which is a plaster, a poultice something that is made up of or in form of crackers.

I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. (Rev 3:18)

It is said to be a Phrygian powder, a medication prepared for the sore or weak eyes. The substance is made up of several chemicals and has healing qualities. It is common during their days and could be applied by barber and hardly by the patient himself.

The Application

Some of the eye application nowadays could be applied by the individual. It was presumed that some could apply this drug to their eyes those days, thence, God wants them to apply the drug to their eyes themselves. Having been diagnosed and known that their eyes have problems and having prescribed for them the drug that they can use, it is expected of them to apply the drug to their eyes themselves by God.

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The Means of the Application

In no hidden terms has Jesus told his servant the means for which they would apply the eyesalve on them and it was by robbing for anointing means rubbing. The author says, and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve”.

Anoint in greek is “ἐγκρίω”, Romanized form is egchriō (pronounced as eng-khree'-o) which means rub in, besmear.

We are equally enjoined by God today to apply the word of God to our daily endeavors we do not have to be hearers alone but the doer of the word.

But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. (Jas 1:22)

Why They Required the Drug

They required this drug, eyesalve because of the negative effects of their Eye Problems on their daily endeavors spiritually and physically. This is because as Jesus said the entire body is in trouble when the eyes are not good. Let us see some of the negative effects.

(i) Naked Without Knowing: The person who is blind if a portion of his cloth has been torn, he may not know it because he cannot see properly.

(ii) The Composition of Food Unknown: The composition of the food before him would not be known until he tastes it, and God forbid that the taste buds have problems that he wouldn’t know what he is taken in.

(iii) Ignorant of the House Residing in: The person wouldn’t know the color of the house he is living in let alone know the structure of the building.

(iv) Children wouldn’t be seen: He cannot identify his children except through their voices alone. And in case he encountered dubious people who can mimic well then he is in trouble.

(v) Could Bless Enemies: We shall recall that when the eyes of isaac grew dim he blessed the person he does not have in mind to bless.

And it came to pass, that when Isaac was old, and his eyes were dim, so that he could not see, he called Esau his eldest son, and said unto him, My son: and he said unto him, Behold, here am I.

And he said, Behold now, I am old, I know not the day of my death:

Now therefore take, I pray thee, thy weapons, thy quiver and thy bow, and go out to the field, and take me some venison;

And make me savoury meat, such as I love, and bring it to me, that I may eat; that my soul may bless thee before I die.

And Jacob said unto his father, I am Esau thy firstborn; I have done according as thou badest me: arise, I pray thee, sit and eat of my venison, that thy soul may bless me.

And Isaac said unto his son, How is it that thou hast found it so quickly, my son? And he said, Because the LORD thy God brought it to me.

And Isaac said unto Jacob, Come near, I pray thee, that I may feel thee, my son, whether thou be my very son Esau or not.

And Jacob went near unto Isaac his father; and he felt him, and said, The voice is Jacob's voice, but the hands are the hands of Esau.

And he discerned him not, because his hands were hairy, as his brother Esau's hands: so he blessed him.

And he said, Art thou my very son Esau? And he said, I am.

And it came to pass, as soon as Isaac had made an end of blessing Jacob, and Jacob was yet scarce gone out from the presence of Isaac his father, that Esau his brother came in from his hunting.

And Isaac his father said unto him, Who art thou? And he said, I am thy son, thy firstborn Esau.

And Isaac trembled very exceedingly, and said, who? where is he that hath taken venison, and brought it me, and I have eaten of all before thou camest, and have blessed him? yea, and he shall be blessed. (Gen 27:1-4, 19-24 & 30-33)

These and other negatives things are usually associated with eye problems and thence the Lord requires for them to get eyesalve to anoint their spiritual eyes with so that they would be able to see well, sot that they would identify him the more, so that they would be able to see deeper things about his Kingdom and will for their lives.

The muscles of the eyes of the Laodicea church have been weakened

such that they cannot see well again, this God notices and for the love he has for them and the entire world for he does not want any to perish he asks them to get what would bring about restoration to their eyesight so that they would be able to see well and would not miss their steps again spiritually and physically for when the spiritual steps are missed, in no time there would be physical missteps.

© 2020 OLUSEGUN

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    • OGUNDARE OLUSEGUN profile imageAUTHOR

      OLUSEGUN 

      2 months ago from NIGERIA

      Uhm. Okay. I will say you said so.

    • Diane Denison profile image

      Diane Denison 

      2 months ago from Cincinnati Ohio

      The ego blocks out the Light of God. As soon as men chip away at the ego light starts coming in and slowly chips it away. Good article in which you did a lot of research. But knowing you Olusegun I could see this in one of your sermons when you were a Pastor.

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