Posted by: Brad Beaman | October 15, 2007

Jesus Heals, Mark 2:1-12


There are some little phrases that are extremely significant in life. Just the word “yes” to the question, “will you marry me”. The phrase the doctor spoke when he said, “It’s a girl”. That small phrase became a life changer. There are many other little phrases that represent great moments in life. The most significant of all is when Jesus says, “Your sins are forgiven”. A Gospel song simply says, “these are the sweetest words that Jesus ever spoke”.

Jesus Heals a Man Who Could Not Walk.

2:1 And again he entered into Capernaum after [some] days; and it was noised that he was in the house. 2 And straightway many were gathered together, insomuch that there was no room to receive [them], no, not so much as about the door: and he preached the word unto them. 3 And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four. 4 And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken [it] up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay.

Mark is the shortest Gospel and it moves from one dramatic story to another. Here we find just such a story filled with high drama. This is the story when Jesus is back at the home of Peter’s Mother in Law in Capernaum. His ministry in Capernaum had been striking and widely received. In Capernaum Jesus taught in the Synagogue, healed a demoniac then went to Peter’s Mother in Law’s house and healed her.
Because the power of God was manifested, the crowds gathered late after sunset. The next morning, when crowds again gathered for an opportunity to experience Jesus power, He was not there. Jesus was found alone praying. Jesus did not return to the crowds. Instead Jesus went on to preach.

This is the occasion when Jesus said the reason he had come was to preach. He traveled around Galilee preaching. Now Jesus is back (a few days later) in Capernaum and so are the crowds. The house where Jesus is ministering is so full that there is not room even to enter.

This scene described by Mark may be difficult for us to imagine in our modern churches. We often worship with plush carpet and padded pews. We may never have experienced a service where the place was too full even to enter.

However in Asia this is a scene all too familiar. A small house becomes a place of worship. It consists of a room that may hold one hundred people. The place is so tightly packed that others observe through a window that is simply an opening in the building. With the tile roofs in Asia you can imagine that if someone were desperate to enter, coming through the roof would be a viable option for them. In this kind of scene God seems to manifest himself most powerfully.

Mark tells us of a paralytic and his friends who desperately wanted to see Jesus. This man simply lay on a mat. Four men carried the paralytic, using his mat as a kind of stretcher. As hard as they tried they couldn’t even get in to see Jesus.
They were desperate to see that their friend get to Jesus, so they used some ingenuity. They went up on the roof of the house. Then they lowered this man on his mat through the tiles of the roof. They placed the paralytic right in the middle of the crowd. Their goal was complete. They had placed their friend right before Jesus.

There must have been debris from the roof falling on Jesus as the men removed the tiles. Jesus did not see the situation as an annoying setback, but an opportunity. We also need to carefully analyze our annoying disruptions. This just might be an opportunity for God to use us if we are sensitive to Him.

The Miracle of forgiveness (vs. 5)
Vs 5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.

This paralyzed man was blessed with friends who were determined to see him come to Jesus. He knows the hearts of men and finds genuine faith wherever it is.
Jesus saw the faith of these men. He looked at the paralytic and said those wonderful words, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”

Here was a man with great physical need. He couldn’t even walk. This man desired physical healing as he lay on the mat paralyzed, but there is no greater need anyone has than the forgiveness of sins.

The Bible says, “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” and “The wages of sin is death.” God created man with a beautiful capacity to relate to God in fellowship. Ever since the Garden of Eden at the fall of man, sin entered the picture. We are bent toward sin.

Have you heard someone ask, “Why is the world such a mess?” The answer is because it is the consequence of man’s sin. It is our sin that causes the tragedy. God comes to set things straight. That is why Jesus came, that is why He, as God, took on humanity. That is the reason Jesus felt compelled to preach. It is because of our sin that Jesus faced the suffering and shame of the cross. Jesus will bring this restoration to completion when He comes again in Glory.

Jesus purpose is to set right a world corrupted by sin. That is why when an individual receives Jesus Christ as Savior, they become a new creature. They are transformed when Jesus says these beautiful words, “Your sins are forgiven.” Jesus had been healing diseases and various illnesses. Now he dealt with the more serious issue, the forgiveness of sins.

Who was this man forgiven of sins? It was a paralytic who came to Jesus earnestly and genuinely. The crowds were gathered there to see Jesus, but not all came with the same reasons. Jews and teachers of the law came from Jerusalem to check Jesus out. They were on a fact finding mission, just as they went to John the Baptist to check him out. Crowds gather for different reasons. Those who are part of a crowd do not all have the same motive. Jesus uses the opportunity of the crowd to glorify God
Skeptics in the Crowd (vs. 6)

Vs 6 But there were certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their hearts, 7 Why doth this [man] thus speak blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God only?
As soon as the teachers of the law heard these words of Jesus, “Your sins are forgiven” they were upset. When they heard Jesus say, “Your sins are forgiven” they sat there thinking to themselves, this is blasphemy! Who can forgive sins, but God alone?

In one sense these teachers of the law were correct. Only God can forgive sins. Anyone other than God who claims to forgive sins is speaking blasphemy. However, these teachers missed one crucial point. Jesus is God!

The opposition to Jesus intensified. There was a flash point when Jesus claimed to forgive sins. These teachers were not saying anything, but they were thinking plenty.
Jesus knows every heart. He knew the faith of the paralyzed man. Now Jesus knows the thoughts of these religious teachers. There is no way we can conceal our innermost thoughts before Jesus. We are an open book before him, in public and in private. That is why the attitude of our heart is so important. God knows your heart.
Jesus Confronts His critics Vs 8 – 10

And immediately when Jesus perceived in his spirit that they so reasoned within themselves, he said unto them, Why reason ye these things in your hearts? 9 Whether is it easier to say to the sick of the palsy, [Thy] sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk? 10 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (he saith to the sick of the palsy,)

There was since the beginning of Jesus ministry, a group of religious leaders who mounted an ever-increasing opposition to him. The teachers of the law came to see if Jesus would check out theologically. These were the experts and they knew that no one, except God, forgives sins. These teachers were waiting for a messianic age for God to bring this forgiveness and salvation.

So Jesus confronted the teachers of the law. Why are you considering these things? Which is easier, Jesus asked, to forgive sins or say get up and walk?

The paralytic and his friends saw an opportunity in a difficulty. The teachers of the law saw a difficulty in the work of God. Jesus sees the faith of the paralyzed man and his friends. He also knows the skeptical hearts of the critics.

Jesus uses the “Son of Man” title. This is a messianic title taken from the book of Daniel. Jesus was saying, I am God, I have authority to forgive sins, and I am the Messiah. Now to demonstrate my authority I will say to this paralytic, of whom I have forgiven his sins, take up your mat and walk. This is so that you may know the Son of Man has authority to forgive sins.
The Paralyzed Man walks (Vs 11- 12)
Vs 11 I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house. 12 And immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch that they were all amazed, and glorified God, saying, We never saw it on this fashion.
In full view of everyone, this paralyzed man got up, took his mat and walked. This amazed everyone. No one had ever seen anything like it.

Could you imagine the excitement of that crowd as Jesus performed such a dramatic miracle in plain view of the crowd? Here is a paralyzed man carried to Jesus on his mat. At the Words of Jesus this same man walks away carrying his mat. What a thrilling moment for the crowd to witness such a dramatic miracle.

The people glorified God. They saw a miracle of a paralyzed man walking and they were amazed. They should have, and we should, also glorify God when a sinner is forgiven.
What does it take for you to glorify God? He is at work all around you. He put the stars in the sky. At His command the oceans were formed.

You may have great needs. Every trouble imaginable exists in our society; health, financial, relationship, moral. Whatever your trouble is your greatest need of all is the forgiveness of sin.

Every other problem will end at your last breath of life, but if you go to the grave without the forgiveness Jesus gives you, then you will regret it for eternity.
This forgiveness is just as available to you today as it was to the paralytic there in Capernaum, 2000 years ago. Michah 7:18 says, Who is a God like you who forgives sins, you will hurl all our sins in the depth of the sea.

Recently one of the testimonies at a conference was so powerful it seemed to take the breath away from the people attending. It was the story of a blind woman by the name of Pani. She was listening to the Jesus film in her village as those with their sight were watching.

Pani was greatly moved when, she heard on the film, Jesus restored the sight of the blind man. When Pani heard these words she cried out, “I want to receive my sight too.” At the conclusion of the film a miracle took place. Pani could see! Jesus restored her sight! As the conference attendees heard this wonderful story they began to show emotion for such a miracle. They were stopped of their emotional exuberance by the missionary as he gave them a reminder.

The restoration of Pani’s sight was not the greatest miracle that evening.
A greater miracle took place than the restoration of her sight. Pani received forgiveness of her sins that night by trusting Jesus as her Savior! She heard Jesus speak the sweetest words of all, “Your sins are forgiven.”

Jesus will remove your sin as far as the east is from the west. It is a wonderful thing for Jesus to say to you, “Your sins are forgiven”. It is a worthy saying that Christ came to this world to save sinners. Do not think that you are beyond forgiveness. The Apostle Paul said he was the chief of sinners. This same Jesus who said to the paralytic your sins are forgiven, healed the paralytic, and he can forgive your sins.

Jesus loves you so much. He cares so much that you experience forgiveness that he endured the cross that you might have your sins forgiven. You need to repent and turn from your sin. Put your faith in Jesus and give him control of your life.

Jesus knows your heart. It may be like the teachers of the law or like the paralytic. One is a heart of skepticism; the other is a heart of faith. What does Jesus find with you? Are your sins forgiven? Come to Jesus in faith today.


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