Tobias heals his father Tobit (Tob 11:9-11:14)

“Then Anna ran to her son. She threw her arms around him.

‘Now that I have seen you,

My child,

I am ready to die.’

She wept. Then Tobit got up. He came stumbling out through the courtyard door. Tobias went up to him, with the gall of the fish in his hand. Holding him firmly, he blew into eyes, saying.

‘Take courage, father!’

With this he applied the medicine to his eyes. It made them smart. Next, with both his hands he peeled off the white films from the corners of his eyes. Then Tobit saw his son. He threw his arms around him.

‘I see you, my son,

The light of my eyes!’”

Tobias’ mother ran to her son and threw her arms around him. She wept and said that she could die now because she had finally seen him. Tobit tried to go to greet him, but he stumbled. Then Tobias went to greet him with the fish gall in his hand. He held his father tightly as he blew into his eyes and applied the fish gall medicine that smarted. Then the white films from the corners of his eyes were peeled off. Tobit could see his son, the light of his life. The healing of the eyes had taken place just as Raphael had said it would.

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The appearance of Raphael (Tob 3:16-3:17)

“At that very moment, the prayers of both were heard in the glorious presence of God. Raphael was sent to heal both of them. He helped Tobit by removing the white films from his eyes, so that he might see God’s light with his eyes. He helped Sarah, the daughter of Raguel, by giving her in marriage to Tobias the son of Tobit. He set her free from the wicked demon Asmodeus. Tobias was entitled to have her before all others who had desired to marry her. At the same time that Tobit returned from the courtyard into his house, Sarah daughter of Raguel came down from her upper room.”

God heard both the prayers of Tobit and Sarah. What a coincidence, since they were both praying at the same time. Now Raphael enters without any introduction. He is not explicitly mentioned as an angel. He simply is a messenger from God, which is what an angel is. He will appear to heal both of them. The plot of the story is now revealed. He will cure Tobit of his blindness and get a husband from Sarah, who will be the son of Tobit, Tobias. Thus, the story of the grave digger and the woman haunted with an evil spirit will join together. Meanwhile, they both returned from their individual prayers.

The blinding of Tobit (Tob 2:9-2:10)

“That same night I washed myself. I went into my courtyard. I slept by the wall of the courtyard. My face was uncovered because of the heat. I did not know that there were sparrows on the wall. Their fresh droppings fell into my eyes. The droppings produced white films. I went to physicians to be healed. However, the more they treated me with ointments the more my vision was obscured by the white films, until I became completely blind. All my kindred were sorry for me. Ahikar took care of me for two years before he went to Elymais.”

Washing was important for ritual purity after touching dead bodies. After Tobit washed himself, he lay out in the courtyard because it was hot. He slept by the wall of the courtyard. Somehow he left his eyes open so that sparrow droppings fell into his eyes, the way that sparrow droppings fall on modern parked cars. He had some kind of white film on his eyes that led to blindness. Although he went to physicians, they only made the situation worse. This is the first biblical mention of an attempt at a cure that does not have a religious base. Everyone felt sorry for him. However, it was nephew, the well connected Ahikar who took care of him. There is no mention of his wife or son helping him. After 2 years, Ahikar had an assignment to go to Elymais, a rich city in Persia, south of Media and north of Susiana.