Jesus Heals a Man With Palsy
When Jesus heals the paralyzed man, among the first words Jesus said to him were “Your sins are forgiven.” Then he healed the man. We must be careful not to concentrate on God’s power to heal physical sickness mare than on his power to forgive spiritual sickness in the form of sin. Jesus saw that even more than physical health, this man needed spiritual health. Spiritual health comes only from Jesus’ healing touch.
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. 5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy,Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.
Body and Spirit
Both the mans’s body and his spirit were paralyzed – he could not walk, and he did not know Jesus. But the man’s spiritual state was Jesus’ first concern. If God does not heal us or someone we love, we need to remember that physical healing is not Christ’s only concern. We will all be completely healed in Christ’s coming kingdom; but first we have to come to know Jesus.
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?
It’s easy to tell someone his sins are forgiven; it’s a lot more difficult to reverse a case of paralysis! Jesus backed up his words by healing the man’s legs. Jesus’ action showed that his words were, true; he had the power to forgive as well as to heal. Talk is cheap, but our words lack meaning if our actions do not back them up. We can say we love God or others, but if we are not taking practical steps to demonstrate that love, our words are empty and meaningless.
8 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,) 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.
Son of Man
This is the first time in Mark that Jesus is referred to as the “Son of Man.” The title Son of Man emphasizes that Jesus is fully human, while Son of God emphasizes that he is fully God. As God’s Son, Jesus has the authority to forgive sin. As a man, he can identify with our deepest needs and sufferings and help us overcome sin.