Then again the Pharisees asked him how he had received his sight. He said unto them, He put clay upon my eyes, and I washed, and do see.
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Cyril of Alexandria
And he said unto them, He put clay upon mine eyes and I washed, and do see.
They receive eagerly, as if it were a sort of food for their envy, his confession of the marvel, and gladly seize upon the excuse for their rage against Jesus. For the man who had been blind relates everything on this occasion very simply, and speaks very abruptly, in brief expressions praising as. it were his Physician: for he is somewhat astounded at the nature of the deed. Probably he may have thought in his mind that Jesus had miraculously enabled him to see by anointing him with clay, an unusual medicament; and it seems to me that it was very significantly and with sharp meaning that he said He made clay, and anointed mine eyes. For it was as though one might suppose him to say: I know that I am speaking to a malicious audience, but nevertheless I will not on that account conceal the truth. I will requite my Benefactor with my thanks; I will be above unseasonable silence. I will honour by my confession ...
Again therefore the Pharisees also asked him, How didst thou receive thy sight?
They busy themselves about the manner of the healing, stirring up as it were the fire of malice which was in them to a greater heat, and ask unnecessary questions, not failing, as it seems to me, to recognize the miracle. For is it not altogether absurd to suppose that they, who had come bringing to them the man who aforetime was blind, had not expressed at all the reason for which they had brought him? But as if they were not sufficient to accuse Christ, the magistrates compel him to confess with his own mouth what had been done, believing that by this means the malicious accusation would have greater force. For observe that they do not ask simply and barely if he had been healed, but they seek rather to hear how he received his sight; this was what they were particularly anxious to hear:----"He made clay, and anointed mine eyes." For it was in this that they foolishly conceived all the transgression of...
Because the slander was now become great, and the Jews had said, Behold what work Jesus does on the Sabbath day, he anoints with clay! But observe, I pray you, how the blind man is not disturbed. When being questioned he spoke in the presence of those others without danger, it was no such great thing to tell the truth, but the wonder is, that now when he is placed in a situation of greater fear, he neither denies nor contradicts what he had said before. What then did the Pharisees, or rather what did the others also? They had brought him (to the Pharisees), as being about to deny; but, on the contrary, that befell them which they desired not, and they learned more exactly. And this they everywhere have to endure, in the case of miracles; but this point we will more clearly demonstrate in what follows. What said the Pharisees?