And when he had thus spoken
In answer to the disciples' question, and declaring his own work and office in the world, and the necessity he was under of performing it:
he spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle;
the Misnic doctors speak F3 of (qwrn jyj) , "clay that is spitted", or "spittle clay", which their commentators say F4 was a weak, thin clay, like spittle or water; but this here was properly spittle clay, or clay made of spittle, for want of water; or it may be rather, through choice Christ spat upon the dust of the earth, and worked it together into a consistence, like clay:
and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay;
however, spittle, especially fasting spittle, might be thought proper in some disorder of the eyes, to be used, as it was by the Jews; (See Gill on John 9:16); yet clay was a most unlikely means of restoring sight to a man that was born blind, which might be thought rather a means of making a man blind that could see. This may be an emblem of the word of God, the eye salve of the Gospel; which is a very unlikely means in the opinion of a natural man, who counts it foolishness, of enlightening and saving sinners; and yet by this foolishness of preaching God does save those that believe.
F3 Misn. Mikvaot, c. 7. sect. 1.
F4 Jarchi, Maimon. & Bartenora in ib.