(All Scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated)
Here is a slightly shortened Scripture for this Gem – Mark 2:5 through 11:
When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven you.” And some of the scribes were...reasoning in their hearts, “Why does this Man speak blasphemies like this? Who can forgive sins but God alone?” But immediately...Jesus perceived ...that they reasoned thus within themselves, He said to them, “Why do you reason about these things in your hearts? Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Arise, take up your bed and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins” – He said to the paralytic...arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.”
Yes, God still heals! But no healing is complete without the forgiveness of sins!
- Unforgiven sins will take us to an eternal hell! Even if one is endowed with perfect health, but does not repent of their sins and turn in faith to Jesus Christ, that one will be judged as a sinner and condemned to hell! As it is written in John 3:36, “He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”
- To die as an unforgiven person, is to experience what the writer of Hebrews says in Hebrews 10:31: “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.”
Human beings are designed to be in contstant union and fellowship with their Creator! “But your iniquities have separated you from your God; and your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear.” (Isaiah 59:2).
- Paul, in writing to the church in Ephesus, reminded the Gentile believers that before they became Christians, “…you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.” (Ephesians 2:12)
- Peter echos the same thing when he quotes Psalm 34:15 in I Peter 3:12: “For the eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their prayers; but the face of the LORD is against those who do evil.”
Jesus, in Mark 8:34 through 38, challenged those who crowded around, to follow Him at all costs, even to putting to death their own will and way in exchange for His! And in verses 36 and 37, He tells them, “For what shall it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?” What will it profit a man if he gains perfect health, and loses his own soul?
So Jesus first addressed the issue of the man’s sin! I suppose I John 1:9 would normally come into play: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” But what if the man could not confess his sins? What if his paralysis had taken away his ability to speak? That’s what happened to Ezekiel. God told him in Ezekiel 3:25 and 26 that he was soon going to experience such a condition.
- John 2:24 and 25 reveals, “…Jesus…knew all men, and had no need that anyone should testify of man, for He knew what was in man.” (see also Hebrews 4:13)
- Even if the paralytic man could not speak, the Lord knew what was in his heart!
- It is not so much the words we speak (yes, they are important according to Matthew 12:34 through 37), it is the heart, the attitude, behind the words that move the Lord! (see Romans 8:26, 27).
It is true that when this incident in Capernaum took place, the full payment for sins had not yet been completed.
- Jesus had not yet been crucified!
- He had not yet been made “…the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.” (I John 2:2 – English Standard Version).
Yet in in Revelation 13:8 Jesus is called, “…the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” From God’s point of view, the suffering and death of Jesus was so certain, it was as if it had already happened, “…from the foundation of the world…”!
- For when He died He bore “…our sins…but also…the sins of the whole world…”! All the sins of humanity were paid for – past, present, and future!
- By the way, this is what makes it such a terrible tragedy when someone rejects Christ and dies in his or her sins. The debt for their sins has been completely paid! And yet that one must pay it again – eternally, because they refused to accept Christ’s full satisfaction of their debt!
Who can forgive sins? Who can forgive our sins? Who can forgive MY sins! Jesus can! He has already paid the price! And He gladly will forgive us…..if only we come to Him in faith!
The Lord proved this point by the paralytic’s dramatic healing! “‘…that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins’ – He said to the paralytic, ‘Your sins are forgiven you…arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.’ ” (Mark 2:10 and 11).
You may be in the finest health now! You may have many friends! But…
If you don’t know Jesus as your Savior…
You have nothing!
Come to Him now!