Jesus helps the Paralytic push evil away
How determined are you to succeed? Is your goal worth removing every barrier erected by satan? In Ephesians 1.18-19, the Apostle Paul discusses God’s plan for your success:
Outline the following story by this plan and, then, join in the study of this man pushing evil away from him with the help of Jesus. How could you use what you will learn to push satan’s evil away from you?
Faith can be seen!
- The paralyzed man in Mark 2.1-12 (also in Matthew 9.1-8 and Luke 5.17-26) expressed a similar level of faith as the centurion in Matthew 8.5-13 and the Canaanite woman in Matthew 15.21-28. Great rewards are produced by great faith! Contrast this with Hebrews 3.16-19.
- The paralytic was, perhaps, a quadriplegic, since he was carried by four men. Also, Jesus told him to ‘take up your bed and walk’ (verse 9). The four men apparently agreed with him that Jesus could heal him, if they could only get him to Him.
- Jesus saw the faith of all five. The paralytic was willing to risk being dropped. The four were willing to remove the roof and to lower him down with ropes, careful to keep him from tipping over. They were, even, willing to interrupt the assembly with the urgency of his plea. Do you want to be free from satan’s bondage that badly? See James 2.18.
- The Holy Spirit was present with Jesus to heal the Pharisees and teachers of the law
( Luke 5.17) and others who wanted to be healed. Perhaps they walked with crutches or had a sinus infection or an ingrown toenail. Whatever ailment, He was there to heal them from that bondage.
Except when there is darkness.
- But, the faith of the Pharisees and teachers of the law could not be seen, for they had not come to be healed but to observe and criticize Jesus. Remember that Jesus had already criticized their teaching in His Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 5-7. He had cast out demons during Sabbath worship (Mark 1.21-28) and in other synagogues in Galilee
and a leper (Mark 1.40-42).
- Jesus was pulling away the layers of Pharisaical philosophy built up over time, to expose the truth that God had intended all along. See Colossians 2.8-10.
- Now, again, Jesus satisfied their need to criticize by using unusual words to heal: ‘Son, your sins are forgiven you’ (verse 5).
- What was their criticism, from verse 7?
- If they had connected their criticism with their observations of Him healing and casting demons out, they should have arrived at the conclusion Jesus stated in John 15.24.
- But, their eyes were blinded by their pride in their philosophy!
- See 2 Corinthians 4.3-6.
How did Jesus know their thoughts?
- Mark 2.6 says the Pharisees and teachers of the law did not speak their criticism; they were ‘reasoning in their hearts’. Matthew 9.3-4 says they ‘said within themselves’ and that Jesus knew their ‘thoughts’. This is another illustration of the Scriptural use of ‘heart’ to mean ‘mind’.
- The Holy Spirit – remember that He was present to heal – knew their thoughts and told Jesus. Contemplate Proverbs 20.27.
- The bad news is you cannot have a thought that He does not know.
- Consider, also, Isaiah 66.2.
- The good news is He will know what the person you are witnessing to thinking and will answer them through you; see Matthew 10.19-20.
- So, Jesus illustrates this ‘good new’ of the Holy Spirit’s knowledge of the Pharisees and others and speaks a controversial word to them: ‘Son, your sins are forgiven you’ (verse 5).
Assignment for next week: Mark 2.9. That is, is ‘your sins are forgiven you’ >=< ‘arise, take up your bed and walk’? Think about it before you answer.