Mark 1: 1-12: Jesus is confronted by the teachers of the Law of Moses for telling the paraplegic that his sins were forgiven. This was certainly a confrontational phrase that Jesus used in dealing with the handicapped man. His friends had found a way to get him into his presence by opening up the rooftop to lower him down to his feet for physical healing. It’s therefore surprising that Jesus would choose to forgive the man’s sins rather than tell him to stand up and walk. But as always Jesus has his reasons for doing things that went beyond what the religious leaders of the day understood.
What sin could have been so great in the life of this man that it surpassed the importance of his physical handicap? We can be certain that he hadn’t robbed the corner store or killed another man. So what sins can a paralytic accumulate that are so important? I think the answer is that the spiritual state of this man was just more important to Jesus than his physical handicap. Jesus had already shown that he cared greatly for people’s physical needs but the real need that people had, and still have today, is to be forgiven of their sins. Sins was and is the greatest handicap of humanity as it completely deforms who God has created us to be. We were created to have continual fellowship with Him and sin breaks that fellowship.
The teachers of the law were rightfully shocked by Jesus words and Jesus knew that it would cause more than a few questions. He needed to make a point about who he was so that He wouldn’t be seen uniquely as a prophet and healer.
Jesus stands apart from all other prophets in his birth, ministry and end of life on earth. Truly only God can forgive the sins of man…