S (Scripture): Mark 2:1 Now after some days, when [Jesus] returned to Capernaum, the news spread that he was at home. 2 So many gathered that there was no longer any room, not even by the door, and he preached the word to them. 3 Some people came bringing to him a paralytic, carried by four of them. 4 When they were not able to bring him in because of the crowd, they removed the roof above Jesus. Then, after tearing it out, they lowered the stretcher the paralytic was lying on. 5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven.” 6 Now some of the experts in the law were sitting there, turning these things over in their minds: 7 “Why does this man speak this way? He is blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone?” 8 Now immediately, when Jesus realized in his spirit that they were contemplating such thoughts, he said to them, “Why are you thinking such things in your hearts? 9 Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Stand up, take your stretcher, and walk’? 10 But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins,” – he said to the paralytic – 11 “I tell you, stand up, take your stretcher, and go home.” 12 And immediately the man stood up, took his stretcher, and went out in front of them all. They were all amazed and glorified God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this!”
O (Observation): Who is present?
Jesus. The paralytic and his 4 friends. The crowd. “Experts in the law (aka scribes).”
Jesus sees the faith in the paralytic and his friends. Jesus forgives first…something only God is allowed to do, according to religious customs of the day. Jesus eventually heals the paralytic, but he does the more important bit first…forgiving his sins…before he heals the man.
As we remember in Leviticus 6:24-30, to be forgiven of sins, one must go to the priest with a sin offering. One does not simply declare someone “Forgiven!”!?!?!
A (Application): This is quite a scene! Something unprecedented. And yet here we have God on earth. Jesus.
My task for you this day is to see yourself in this story.
Are you the paralytic?
One of the friends of the paralytic? They had faith, but were they certain?
One of the scribes (experts in the laws)? Are you stuck to the order of things and the “right way”?
Are you an onlooker in the crowd, amazed and bewildered?
Sorry. You can’t be Jesus : )
Where do you fit in this story today?
Today, I’m a friend of the paralytic…bringing people to the one that healed me.
P (Prayer): Lord, heal us and give us faith to come to you for healing and forgiveness of our sins. Amen.