Exodus 4:11 – Does God Make People Blind?
“And the LORD said unto him [Moses], Who hath made man’s mouth? or who maketh the dumb, or deaf, or the seeing, or the blind? have not I the LORD?” (Exo 4:11)
Note that the verse says, “who makes the mute or the deaf, or the seeing or the blind?” Who makes those people? Who makes mute people; who makes deaf people; who makes blind people? It does not say “who makes people mute who would otherwise speak or who makes people blind who would otherwise see?” God takes responsibility for making people but not for making them blind etc – that is the work of the enemy.
The context of this passage is important to consider. Moses was trying to be excused from God’s assignment to him to request that Pharaoh release the Israelites from slavery. Moses reply was:
“… O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither heretofore, nor since thou hast spoken unto thy servant: but I am slow of speech, and of a slow tongue.” (Exo 4:10)
In Exodus 4:11 God was, of course, countering Moses excuse saying He has made all people and is able to overcome such defects and then proposes how He would deal with the defect Moses was claiming as an excuse – and Moses was not even mute. His question to Moses could be understood as a rhetorical question. The answer being that if God could make people in the first place he could certainly fix any defects and enable them to function fully.
We should always interpret Old Testament passages, especially the more difficult ones, in the light of the New Testament, the later and greater revelation (recognizing that truth is progressive). Jesus claimed to be the full revelation of His Father and any understandings must be consistent with the character He portrayed. He consistently healed diseased minds and bodies. The interpretation of Exodus 4:11 cannot contradict Jesus’ example or teaching.
November 12, 2018 @ 8:16 am
Is it a coincidence that just this morning I was also looking at this passage? My little note beside Exo 4:11 says “Yahshua came to open dumb mouths, deaf ears, and blind eyes.” And scripture establishes that very thing. See Isaiah 42:7, 58:6 and Acts 26:18. So, yes, it’s as you say “God takes responsibility for making people but not for making them blind etc – that is the work of the enemy.” John 10:21 confirms that very thing in this way, by saying “…can a devil open the eyes of the blind?” Obviously not. But he sure as heck can close them, hence the worldwide, wholesale deception about the lovely and loving character of our Father in Heaven.
November 12, 2018 @ 3:28 pm
Of course the devil can close eyes and not only eyes, but minds, too. He’s the god of this world who has blinded the minds of them which believe not. 2 Cor 4:4. But our Father has promised to bring the blind by a way that they know not and lead them in paths that they have not known. He will make darkness light before them, and crooked things straight! Isaiah 42:16.
November 13, 2018 @ 9:28 am
That’s exactly right, and that’s exactly what’s happening, with great thanks to Father and Son for ministries such as this one, and also yours through which much welcome Light is being disseminated.
January 23, 2021 @ 6:32 pm
Thanks for writing this!!! Very helpful.
September 28, 2021 @ 4:40 pm
Great article and much needed! Blessings to this ministry.
June 16, 2022 @ 9:18 pm
It’s interesting. I mostly read in the NIV or ESV. I do have KJV/NKJV as well, but I’m surprised that the NIV and ESV don’t word this verse the same way. I checked the interlinear bible, and it lines up with what’s in the KJV/NKJV. NIV and ESV says “who makes them deaf…”. I’m glad for this website. I’ve been trying to better understand text that could be used to damage the character of God, but this was good to understand, so I might have to look into this website. Thank you so much!
February 11, 2023 @ 8:32 am
My bible translation says “who makes a person mute or deaf, seeing or blind? Is it not I, the Lord?”
Is this a bad translation? Because I agree God doesn’t make people defective, it is a result of sin and the enemy. But when I read this, it makes it sound as though God makes the person deaf, blind, etc. Thoughts?
March 19, 2023 @ 4:17 pm
Yes, it is a bad translation. The King James Version says:
“And the LORD said unto him, Who hath made man’s mouth? or who maketh the dumb, or deaf, or the seeing, or the blind? have not I the LORD?” (Exo 4:11)
God does not take a person and make him blind. He makes everyone and, in doing so, maintains the workings of nature. Through the sin in this world, genetic errors have increased, resulting in defects.
God does not bring illness or disasters but He allows the natural consequences of our actions to happen. That is what the Bible calls “visiting the iniquity” as in Exodus 20:5 which even includes the hereditary component. The bad things often associated with God area only allowed by Him.
God’s desire is that we have an abundant, healthy life (John 10:10) and prosper and be in health (3 John 1:2)