Jesus Heals a Paralyzed Man
“Jesus climbed into a boat and went back across the lake to his own town. Some people brought to him a paralyzed man on a mat. Seeing their faith, Jesus said to the paralyzed man, “Be encouraged, my child! Your sins are forgiven.”
But some of the teachers of religious law said to themselves, “That’s blasphemy! Does he think he’s God?”
Jesus knew what they were thinking, so he asked them, “Why do you have such evil thoughts in your hearts? Is it easier to say ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or ‘Stand up and walk’? So I will prove to you that the Son of Man has the authority on earth to forgive sins.” Then Jesus turned to the paralyzed man and said, “Stand up, pick up your mat, and go home!”
And the man jumped up and went home! Fear swept through the crowd as they saw this happen. And they praised God for giving humans such authority.” Matthew 9:1-8 NLT
My Thoughts: This story gives me chills because of the paralyzed man’s faith. Remember, Jesus knows everything in our heart and He knew this man was suffering from his sins more than from his paralyzed condition.
I want to share a personal story about myself that may give you a chuckle in the beginning, but when reality hit me, it was no longer funny.
As a new believer I didn’t really know how to pray so I used a method from our pastor called P.R.A.Y. It meant: Praise God, Repent and ask forgiveness of my sins, Ask God for my prayer requests, and Yield my heart and will to Jesus daily. Since I’m structure oriented this was a wonderful style for me. I was so proud because at the end of a week of prayer, I reflected that I had no sins (okay this is where you can laugh)!
Since Jesus wants us to face the truth that we are all sinners (“For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.” Romans 3:23 NLT), that weekend out pastor gave a sermon about sin and he told us there was not a day that went by he didn’t sin. Can I tell you I immediately felt sick to my stomach? I knew if that man sinned daily, I most certainly did too!
So I asked God to open my eyes to my sins. Oh. My. To this day that remains the most reckless prayer I have ever prayed, and within hours my eyes were opened to the awful truth of my sins (this part is totally not funny). After a week, I was exhausted, I cried a lot, and I couldn’t even stand to look at myself in the mirror. I would no sooner get over the revelation of one sin, when I would remember a past sin. I was literally begging God to take me out of the world because I could see how wretched I was! Thankfully the next week our pastor talked about God’s forgiving grace and redemption when I was saved otherwise I’m not sure what I would have done.
Therefore, I understand this man’s torment over his sins and his desire to come to Jesus for the ultimate healing power of forgiveness. Sometimes it’s the consequences of our reckless sins that make us realize how much we need the forgiveness of Jesus to receive His highest and best healing.
To affirm that Jesus knew this man’s heart and thoughts we read that He knew the thoughts of the teachers of religious laws who considered Jesus blasphemous.
“Jesus knew what they were thinking, so he asked them, “Why do you have such evil thoughts in your hearts?” Matthew 9:4 NLT
Because of their unbelief and evil thoughts, the paralyzed man was not only forgiven for his sins, he was healed from his paralysis. His faith was so strong he JUMPED up and went home at the command of Jesus.
Jesus demonstrated the power of His words to forgive and heal; then the crowds were amazed.
My hope today is two-fold:
- I pray that our words and actions reflect the power and blessing of Jesus in our lives. We can say we love Jesus and others but if the majority of our words and actions say or show otherwise, we must reconsider the level of our faith. (For instance if you preach the glory of God out of one side of your mouth and racism out of the other…, you might want to reconsider your faith!)
- I pray that everyone reading this blog has the life saving grace and forgiveness of Jesus. If you are a believer, we all must put our faith in action by using the gifts God gave us to share the news of Jesus. If you aren’t a believer but want that forgiveness and grace of God then:
“If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by openly declaring your faith that you are saved. As the Scriptures tell us, Anyone who trusts in him will never be disgraced. Jew and Gentile are the same in this respect. They have the same Lord, who gives generously to all who call on him. For “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”” Romans 10:9-13 NLT
I’m always available to discuss a choice for salvation, or you can discuss it with any pastor at a Bible believing/Jesus following church.
Closing Prayer: Father God, thank you for this lesson today that reminds us when we are healed from our sins that alone can heal our bodies! I pray if there is someone struggling with salvation You will point them to a Bible believing/Jesus following church to walk them through the process. I pray we live our faith out loud by loving all people and walking in obedience to You. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.