Luke 5:18-26 (NIV)
18 Some men came carrying a paralyzed man on a mat and tried to take him into the house to lay him before Jesus. 19 When they could not find a way to do this because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and lowered him on his mat through the tiles into the middle of the crowd, right in front of Jesus.
20 When Jesus saw their faith, he said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.”
21 The Pharisees and the teachers of the law began thinking to themselves, “Who is this fellow who speaks blasphemy? Who can forgive sins but God alone?”
22 Jesus knew what they were thinking and asked, “Why are you thinking these things in your hearts? 23 Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? 24 But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.”25 Immediately he stood up in front of them, took what he had been lying on and went home praising God. 26 Everyone was amazed and gave praise to God. They were filled with awe and said, “We have seen remarkable things today.”
- Faith resulted to forgiveness – Because Jesus saw their faith, He forgave the paralyzed man’s sins
- Love is an action – The men loved the paralyzed man deeply to carry him around, remove the roof tiles tediously and lower him dangerously through the roof
- Faith is an action – Their faith was demonstrated by lowering the man on a mat through the roof. The faith was active and bold
- Jesus wants us to come to Him boldly – He did not rebuke the men despite interrupting Him and making a scene
- Jesus is God – Jesus used the paralyzed man to interject His ability to forgive sins. Since the Pharisees and teachers said that only God forgives, Jesus was saying He is God
- Everything happens to glorify God
- Without the man being paralyzed and Jesus forgiving him, the Pharisees and teachers would not question Jesus’ authority. But Jesus revealed Himself as the Son of Man in the middle of healing the paralyzed man, in order to glorify Himself/the Father.
- When the man stood up and walked, he went home praising God. Everyone also was amazed and gave praise to God.
- It’s always for God. Deal with it and marvel at this beautiful and mysterious truth. He is God and He is sovereign.
- Spiritual healing is more essential
- All diseases, calamities, bad things in the world are caused by the fallen nature of the world due to sin. Ergo, He “forgave” the man first.
- By forgiving sins, He not only cured the symptom of sin but the root cause.
- Forgiveness of sin is of utmost priority. The healing is secondary/bonus.
- Jesus is life-changing – The man went home praising God. A true encounter with Him will leave you praising Him.
When someone who is sick asks you to pray for them, how do you pray for them?
When praying for a Christian, it might go something like, “Lord, heal my friend quickly according to your will.” But for a friend who doesn’t know Christ, we must be more intent in sharing the gospel than pleading for healing. The spiritual forgiveness of sins saves us from eternal death, which is far more important than physical healing.
The truth is, everyone who doesn’t have a relationship with Jesus is paralyzed and helpless, and needs forgiveness and healing, whether they know it or not. And all of us who were already forgiven must take the initiative and responsibility to lower them down through the roof, and lay them down at Jesus feet.
Top of mind people who are sick spiritually and physically are my cousin Karl and my grandma. I don’t talk to them but I shall pray for their encounter with the Lord.
Thank you Jesus for forgiving me of my sins. Thank you because you do not heal only the surface/physical ailments, but you heal the soul and no doctor can ever do that. And thank you to all the people who have lowered me through the roof so I can face Jesus.