Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Mark 2:1-5

And Jesus seeing their faith said to the paralytic, ‘Son, your sins are forgiven’ (NAS, Mark 2:5).
The healing of the paralytic man has been one of my favorite stories of Jesus’ miracles for a long time. These four men who went to such great lengths to bring their friend to Jesus amaze me. They literally dug a whole through the roof just to get him there—to get him to Jesus!
Surely they had tried to push through the crowd in and surrounding the house. Why wouldn’t the mass let them through? Were they putting their own needs first—“Forget it, Jesus is going to heal me first” or “He’s going to heal my kid first”? Did they not want these men to bother or interrupt the Teacher? They were having a hard enough time hearing as it was. Why were those in the crowd so lacking in faith? Why did they not clear a path? Why were these men forced to dig through the roof? Surely that caused a much greater disturbance. By that time the whole crowd must have been mad at them. The people at the back were mad because they were insisting on being first. The people nearest to Jesus were angry because their clothes, hair, faces—everything—were covered in dirt from the crumbling roof. Yet these men persisted at the risk of the whole town being angry with them.
What had the paralytic done for these men that made them love him so much? Or maybe he had done nothing at all. Perhaps these men just loved him so unconditionally that they could not help but bring him to the One who could heal him. These men understood how to love and how to believe. They would not let any obstacle stand in the way of their love and their faith, and Jesus understood. He saw their faith, He saw the way the paralytic trusted them, He saw how the four men loved the paralytic, and He loved him too.
I want to love people like that. I want to go to that length to bring people before Jesus. Let us be persistent and press against all obstacles to bring others to Christ. Let us love as these men loved. Let us loved as Jesus loved.

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