“And when Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, Son, your sins are forgiven.”
I love this story. Crowded house, people filling the room, listening to Jesus teach there outside the house, crowds trying to get in to hear. And then you have these four men and their friend who is a paralytic and they know Jesus can heal their friend. And so they put him on a mat. They bring him out to the house. The only problem is once they get there, they can’t get inside. And so they get creative. They climb up on the roof, create a hole in the roof. Imagine being inside that home. You’re listening to Jesus teach and all of a sudden dirt starts falling on your head and you’re like, “What’s going on up there?”
We rejoice in Christ’s authority to forgive sins and await the day when He will bring about ultimate healing. Help us to trust in You and proclaim the good news of Your gospel.
You’re hearing these footsteps and then all of a sudden this hole is being created in the rood. You’re looking over at whoever owns the home, like, what are they thinking right now? A hole big enough for a man to be let down on a mat into the middle of the room. And verse five says, “When Jesus saw their faith”, whose faith did He see? Their faith, the faith of these men who had brought this paralytic friend to Jesus. They had creative faith to go through all these measures. They had confident faith. They just knew that if they could get their friend before Jesus, he could be healed. And then what’s shocking is when Jesus says to this paralyzed man not rise up and walk. He does that in a minute, but he starts by saying, “Son, your sins are forgiven”.
Jesus was able to do more than they even imagined. Because Jesus had come, not just to bring physical healing and physical restoration, but he had come ultimately to bring spiritual forgiveness, spiritual healing, spiritual restoration. There’s so much we could talk about in this passage and so much we could pray accordingly, but just based merely on what we have talked about, Jesus, we praise you for your power to forgive sins, for your authority to forgive sins, to say to our sins, all of our rebellion against God, it’s gone, it’s forgiven, it’s wiped clean. We praise you for your authority to forgive sins.
We praise you for your authority to heal disease. We pray for people who are sick, because we know you have authority to bring healing. And even when you choose not to bring healing in your wisdom in this world, we know that all ultimate healing is in store for every single person who has struggled with sickness and disease and trust in you. We know that our bodies will be resurrected as your body. We praise you for your authority to heal. And so we pray, give us creative, confident faith like these men. We pray that you would give us creative faith that does whatever it takes to bring people around us who are in need to you.
Lord, help us to be creative, to think of all the ways where we might introduce our family members, friends, coworkers, neighbors, people in our city to you. Give us creative faith and give us confident faith that believes you have power to forgive sins and believes you have power to meet our deepest needs. God, we pray for this kind of faith, such that it would be said that in response to our faith, you pronounce over people around us, sins forgiven. God, we pray for that. We pray for forgiveness of sins, spiritual healing, spiritual restoration, salvation for people.
Right around us, people far from us among the nations, give us creative faith in reaching the nations, confident faith in reaching the nations with the gospel. We pray that our faith would lead to others forgiveness this week, today, as long as we’re on this earth, not that we can trust in you for someone else’s forgiveness. We know that they must come before you, but God give us faith that works creatively to bring them to you and works confidently, knowing that you have the power to save them. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.