Jan. 27th, 2010
Mark 2:5 Seeing their faith, Jesus said to the paralyzed man, “My child, your sins are forgiven.” Once again, a case where Jesus gives this man what he really needs, not necessarily what he or his friends thought he needed. Jesus forgives his sins, when
what he and his friends thought he needed was to be healed so he could walk again. This is an interesting story that is filled with meaning and surprises. The obvious lesson is that the Pharisees criticize Jesus for forgiving this guy, claiming that only God can forgive sins. Yup, Jesus is setting
himself up to be God!
But there is something more, maybe not deeper, but different I see in this story. Most of us most of the time feel/believe that we must have an active faith in place to receive anything from Jesus. If we want to see God’s blessing in our or others lives, we must have faith. If we want to see a miracle in our life or another’s we must exercise faith. If we need something from Jesus, we must place our faith in His ability to grant that request…but apparently not here.
The 4 buddies make this elaborate plan to carry their friend to Jesus, are not dissuaded by the overwhelming crowd, carry their buddy to the roof, dig a hole in the roof, gently lower their friend in front of Jesus; and watch as he not only forgives his sins, but eventually, and just to spite the stupid Pharisees; he heals their friend. But notice whose faith is applauded and applied to render healing to this crippled fellow…It was not his faith, no mention is made of his faith…”when Jesus saw THEIR faith, he healed their friend!
I don’t want to make more of this than it deserves, but this point has been meaningful to me throughout my life, and has been used by God to minister to many people throughout my ministry. When at points in our life we have no faith of our own, or our need is so great we can’t even get ourselves to pray…it is then that we must rely on the faith of our friends and family to carry us to Jesus! Sometimes our faith in Jesus is not strong at all, but our friend’s faith is! So we rely and trust in/on them, and find that Jesus still heals us and forgives us and sends us well on our way. Be a faithful friend today, or be a trusting friend today as you allow your friend’s faith to carry you to Jesus.