Mark 2:1-12 (GNT
A few days later Jesus went back to Capernaum, and the news spread that he was at home. So many people came together that there was no room left, not even out in front of the door. Jesus was preaching the message to them when four men arrived, carrying a paralyzed man to Jesus. Because of the crowd, however, they could not get the man to him. So they made a hole in the roof right above the place where Jesus was. When they had made an opening, they let the man down, lying on his mat. Seeing how much faith they had, Jesus said to the paralyzed man, “My son, your sins are forgiven.”
Some teachers of the Law who were sitting there thought to themselves, “How does he dare talk like this? This is blasphemy! God is the only one who can forgive sins!”
At once Jesus knew what they were thinking, so he said to them, “Why do you think such things? Is it easier to say to this paralyzed man, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up, pick up your mat, and walk’? I will prove to you, then, that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “I tell you, get up, pick up your mat, and go home!”
While they all watched, the man got up, picked up his mat, and hurried away. They were all completely amazed and praised God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this!”
I wonder if our faith would lead us to such great efforts on behalf of another fellow human being?
Was the paralyzed man a friend, a family member? Who was he, that those who brought him to Jesus, were so persistent in their efforts to bring him to Jesus? What did they already know and believe about Jesus?
There was such a contrast of persons present in the room that day.
Many were gathered to listen to what Jesus had to say. And were eager to believe in his words. But, the moment Jesus, offered a “hands-on” example of what he was speaking in word… the teachers of the law who were gathered in the room began to cry “blasphemy!” They were appalled at what Jesus had done: he forgave the sins of the paralytic…and healed him…telling him to take up his mat and go home…
The scriptures say that ALL were amazed and praised God, when they saw with their own eyes…the healing of the paralyzed man…who indeed did get up, take up his mat…and left, hurriedly…for home…
Were the teachers of the law, momentarily amazed at what Jesus did, too?
Was there a brief moment of belief in their hearts?
Sometimes…that’s all it takes, doesn’t it? One brief moment, in the midst of our doubt… to be witness to God’s forgiveness and healing in the world among us…and to see a life transformed…a community is transformed…by the love of God, made known to us…in Jesus…
It takes one brief moment to believe, to dare to have hope and faith in the One who reconciles us to God, and each other…
I’m ready to begin the day now…eyes wide open…ready to be amazed by God, wherever I go throughout the day…
Rev Julie Platson
St Peter’s by the Sea Episcopal Church
July 16, 2019