When he saw their faith, he said to him, ‘Man, your sins are forgiven you.’
And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, ‘Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?’
But when Jesus perceived their thoughts, he answered and said to them, ‘Why are you reasoning in your hearts? Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Rise up and walk?’ But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins.’
He said to the man who was paralyzed, ‘I say to you, arise, take up your bed and go to your house.’
Immediately he rose up before them, took up what he had been lying on and departed to his own house, glorifying God.” — Luke 5:17-25.
I want to give you my take on this healing story. Many scholars believe that this man’s paralysis was caused by some sin he had committed. No, not a punishment from God, but the result of a bad decision on his part. Do we know for sure this to be true and not speculation? No, we don’t, but I believe it.
I believe this man’s friends had faith for him to be healed by Jesus, or else they wouldn’t have gone to the extreme measure of lowering him through the roof. And I believe this man had faith, or else he wouldn’t have let them do it. But in my opinion I believe he was struggling with unbelief as well. I think it was like we sometimes see it depicted, an angel on one shoulder whispering in one ear and the devil on the other shoulder whispering in the other ear.
I believe one minute he would think, “Jesus will heal me,” as he listened to the good voice, and then the bad voice of the devil would say, “Look what you did. He will never heal you. You have to pay for what you have done.”
So this man had faith, yet he struggled with unbelief.
I believe the Holy Spirit revealed to Jesus that in order for this man to be able to receive his healing he first needed to receive forgiveness. Can you imagine how this man was transformed by knowing he was forgiven? Can you picture the guilt and shame he had lived with for who knows how many years being lifted off of him and replaced with joy, peace and complete confidence toward Jesus to heal him?
Once he knew he was forgiven, the devil no longer had the power over him to speak his lies. That voice was silenced and replaced with those beautiful words of “son, your sins are forgiven you.” Those simple yet life-transforming words positioned him into a place to completely believe for his healing.
I believe there are many people reading this who need to know they are forgiven by Jesus the same way this man did. We need to know we are forgiven before we can confidently believe that Jesus has provided healing for us despite what we may have done.
Maybe you think what you have done is just too bad and not worthy of forgiveness, whether you brought on the physical ailment you are suffering with or not. Can I let you in on a little secret? None of us are worthy of forgiveness. None. But Jesus still died for us all. And his death was not only for the forgiveness of sins, but also it was a sozo package, meaning the salvation he provided was for us to be made whole in every area of our lives including our physical bodies.
Psalm 103:3 says, “Who forgives all your iniquities, who heals all your diseases.”
This story is a wonderful example of what Jesus came to do: forgive and heal.
Your forgiveness was already purchased for you. Your healing was already purchased for you.
Stop wondering if God will do it for you, but rather know it is already done and put faith in that. Take your eyes off yourself and look to Jesus. Picture him on the cross, arms stretched out, proclaiming the words, “It is finished.”
It is done. He paid for it all. Thank him and receive what he has provided for you today.
Published: January 30, 2017