The Jewish Opponents Remain Divided over Jesus (10:19-21)

Jesus has addressed this profound teaching to "some Pharisees who were with him," who were surprised at the idea that they might be blind (9:40). These are the same folks who had been divided over Jesus due to his healing of the blind man (9:16), and they continue to be divided over him (10:19). For some, Jesus' teaching reinforces the idea that he is demon-possessed (v. 20; cf. 7:20; 8:48-52). To this they now add that he is raving mad, "since madness was thought to be the result of demonic possession (Brown 1966:387; cf. Mk 3:20-30; 5:1-20). Others counter the Pharisees' assertion, saying that a person who is demon-possessed does not speak like this and cannot open the eyes of the blind (v. 21). Thus, both Jesus' words and deeds combine to bear witness to him, but the revelation simply increases the division. The more light, the greater the polarization.

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