Mark 2:1-12 Jesus Heals the Paralytic
Let’s set the stage here:
Jesus has gone home for the first time since starting his public ministry. As we saw yesterday, despite trying to keep it under wraps for a little while, the cleansed leper has leaked it to the press and now everybody has heard that Jesus is doing some really amazing things. Hordes of people want to see what all the fuss is out. The house is full of people wanting a piece of the action. It is not just people wanting a touch from God. The paparazzi as well as the main stream media (scribes) are hanging around as well trying to get the scoop or bring the hammer down. We can see a little more why Jesus wanted to put this off a little while … can’t a guy get a little privacy! But that is not the point today.
The house is backed up out the door. You know there is always going to be “that guy”! The desperate dude that just can’t wait his turn. (I know the traffic is backed up and the left lane is ending … I will zoom up to the front and force my way in) So these guys take their buddy up to the roof, cut a hole and lower him down to Jesus. Seriously? How long has this guy been paralyzed? He couldn’t wait until Jesus came out? Catch him on the way to the outhouse or something. And another thing … whose house is this? I don’t know this for sure, but the text says Jesus was at home … this was His house. Dudes, you just cut a hole in the Son of God’s house, really? You are doing demolition over His head and He don’t even have a hard hat. Give me break!
Most of the time I have heard someone preach about this story, it has been centered around the faith of these guys and their persistence. Actually, I think the guys were rude, impatient, and inconsiderate! I think instead of healing the one guy, I might have considered sending out 5 paralytics. Jesus did not just decide , “hmmm, I think I will push the limits here and say your sins are forgiven instead of be healed”. These guys had just committed sin right there in front of everyone. Forgiveness of sin was definitely in order.
What a new concept! We do not have to be bound by sin … our own sin or the sins of others. If Jesus had allowed justice to be served, not only would this guy not have been healed, but he and his friends would have been carted off to jail. By releasing them (forgiving them) He was free to bring healing and restoration.
How often do I find myself withholding love from others because of some offense that I have held onto? Something as simple as a tone of voice or an eye roll can set me off. Just this week, I withheld blessing from my son for a petty little attitude that he did not even know about. I am not saying that we should ignore sin. Sin has consequences and that can not be ignored. (It would not surprise me in the least to find that Jesus immediately sent those guys up to repair the roof.) The Good News is that sin does not have to bind us from pouring love, compassion and blessing into the lives of others.
“For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Rom 8:5)
Father, show me how to see through sin like Jesus so that I can bring the amazing love and grace of Your Good News to everyone I can.