Friday August 28, 2020
When Someone Needs Jesus
2 A few days later, when Jesus again entered Capernaum, the people heard that he had come home. 2 They gathered in such large numbers that there was no room left, not even outside the door, and he preached the word to them. 3 Some men came, bringing to him a paralyzed man, carried by four of them. 4 Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus by digging through it and then lowered the mat the man was lying on. 5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralyzed man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”
6 Now some teachers of the law were sitting there, thinking to themselves, 7 “Why does this fellow talk like that? He’s blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone?”
8 Immediately Jesus knew in his spirit that this was what they were thinking in their hearts, and he said to them, “Why are you thinking these things? 9 Which is easier: to say to this paralyzed man, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up, take your mat and walk’? 10 But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the man, 11 “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.” 12 He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this!”
The friends who brought their friend to Jesus, a man paralyzed from birth, knew he needed Jesus. Either they had seen or heard of Jesus healing lepers and giving sight to the blind, or they knew what Jesus could do. Regardless, they were determined to bring their friend to the one who could heal him. Nothing was going to stop them. They were going to bring him to Jesus, even if he couldn’t possibly get there himself. You could say they were willing to “raise the roof” if that was what it was going to take.
The results of these friend’s commitment were amazing! More than healing his body, Jesus saw the greater need, a healing of the paralytic’s soul. Before he addressed the man’s need to walk, Jesus addressed his eternal need, “Your sins are forgiven!” The paralytic was freed from his bondage from sin. Then Jesus gave the command, “Rise up and take your mat with you!” The mat no longer carried him, he carried the mat. He was new in every respect, body and soul.
When someone needs Jesus, to what lengths are we willing to go to see that they are brought into the presence of Jesus? Are we willing to be patient enough to bring them one step at a time? Are we willing to not take no for an answer? Are we willing to bare our souls, sharing our struggles and failures? Without a friend who is committed to go to great lengths to help them experience Jesus’ love and forgiveness, they may never be touched by our Lord’s greatest gift, forgiveness of sin and a whole new outlook on life.
Prayer for Today
Lord, may I go to any length to bring people to Jesus. May I be bold, patient and unrelenting to show them the relentless love of Jesus. In Christ’s name, Amen.
The First 15
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