1 And again he entered into Capernaum after some days; and it was noised that he was in the house. 2 And straightway many were gathered together, insomuch that there was no room to receive them, no, not so much as about the door: and he preached the word unto them. 3 And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four. 4 And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay. 5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.
6 But there was certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their hearts, 7 Why doth this man thus speak blasphemies? who can forgive sins but God only?
8 And immediately when Jesus perceived in his spirit that they so reasoned within themselves, he said unto them, Why reason ye these things in your hearts? 9 Whether is it easier to say to the sick of the palsy, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk? 10 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (he saith to the sick of the palsy,) 11 I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house. 12 And immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch that they were all amazed, and glorified God, saying, We never saw it on this fashion.
God’s words and works are wonderful and marvellous.
Jesus had moved to Capernaum from His home at Nazareth.
When Jesus came to Capernaum, there was a man with an evil spirit. The evil spirit cried out, “you are the holy one of God”. At that time the people did not know whom He was but the demons knew. He rebuked the evil spirit and it left the man.
Afterwards Jesus went to Peter’s house, where Peter’s mother-in-law had a high fever. He rebuked the fever and it left her and she was healed.
Afterwards many came to Him with different diseases and He healed them all.
Then a leper came and fell at His feet, “if Thou will Thou can make me clean”. Jesus was filled with compassion, stretched out His hand, touched him and healed him, saying, “I am willing” (Mark 1:40, 41).
Zacchaeus also could not get to Jesus because of the crowd, but he too made a plan to meet Jesus.
The pharisees, the religious leaders of the day, also heard of all that Jesus did. So when Jesus was in this house, many people gathered together so that the house was full.
This man needed the help of these four friends to take him to Jesus. So too we need help to come to Jesus.
A person dead in his trespasses and sins is not only lame but stone dead. He cannot come to Jesus on his own. God has chosen to use other people to help a person dead in his sins to come to Jesus.
Although it is impossible for a person to come to Jesus out of his own, God does sometimes work out of the ordinary and reveal Himself to a person dead in his sins and give him new life. But ordinarily God has chosen to use human instruments to bring others to Christ.
If God should use the angels, Gabriel and the other angels, it would probably be less than a day and the whole world would be brought to Jesus. But that is not the way God has chosen to work.
These men could not take the paralytic to Jesus because of the crowd in the house. So there are people that block the way when a person wants to come to Jesus. But the friends of this man made a plan to overcome the obstacle of the people blocking the way.
They did something very drastic, and maybe even illegal when they opened the roof to let down the man in front of Jesus.
As the commotion was going on on the roof and as they broke open the roof, and the clay and dust fell on the people below, you can imagine the comments and thoughts of the pharisees and learned people. But Jesus allowed it to happen and said nothing.
Jesus had compassion on the man who had the need.
Maybe you pray that God would work. So people from the street come for help, and they make your house dirty, don’t know how to behave and sit properly etc. Suddenly it gets too much and you get upset because things do not work out as you have thought. You do not realise that the souls of these people are worth much more than these material things.
Jesus first forgave this man his sins. Divine healing starts in the heart, in the soul. The physical healing is of secondary importance. This man had sins that he had done that first had to be dealt with.
This is the problem of many people coming for help. They want to be healed physically, but when they have received the help they sought, and haven’t been helped spiritually, their lives doesn’t change and they remain enemies of God.
The scribes and pharisees, the professors of that time, the learned people would never have gone this route to cut open the roof to get the paralytic to Jesus. They would have calculated the cost of the damage to the roof, all the dust on the people below, etc., and would conclude that it’s not the right thing to do.
The Lord Jesus calls Himself the Son of man. He condescends and humbles Himself to be associated with us. Note that He doesn’t call Himself the son of the Germans or the Zulus, but the Son of man. He is for all people.
Woe to us if we despise His love and compassion and condescension.
These four men are an example to us. Where are the people today who bring others to Jesus?
This man needed four to bring him to Jesus.
Where are your own children? Have you brought them to Jesus? If you’re not able, why don’t you seek help that someone helps you to bring them to Jesus.