Sunday service, Detlef Stegen, 29 April 2018
17 And it came about that on one of these days he was teaching; and some Pharisees and teachers of the law were seated there, who had come from every town of Galilee and Judaea and from Jerusalem; and the power of the Lord was with him, to make those who were ill free from their diseases.
18 And some men had with them, on a bed, a man who was ill, without power of moving; and they made attempts to get him in and put him before Jesus.
19 And because of the mass of people, there was no way to get him in; so they went up on the top of the house and let him down through the roof, on his bed, into the middle in front of Jesus.
20 And seeing their faith he said, Man, you have forgiveness for your sins.
21 And the scribes and Pharisees were having an argument, saying, Who is this, who has no respect for God? who is able to give forgiveness for sins, but God only?
22 But Jesus, who had knowledge of their thoughts, said to them, Why are you reasoning in your hearts?
23 Which is the simpler: to say, You have forgiveness for your sins; or to say, Get up and go?
24 But so that you may see that on earth the Son of man has authority for the forgiveness of sins, (he said to the man who was ill,) I say to you, Get up, and take up your bed, and go into your house.
25 And straight away he got up before them, and took up his bed and went away to his house giving praise to God.
This is the crux of the matter, that our sins are forgiven.
These religious people were waiting for the Messiah but were full of questions and accusations.
How is it with you? Maybe you’re not even waiting like they are waiting but simply carry on with your life as if God does not exist.
These religious people left with their criticisms and remained unsatisfied, while the paralytic and his friends left praising God. Thank God for those friends who saw his need and brought him to Jesus.
Do you remember your pitiful state before you came to Jesus? May you never forget that.
Our Lord Jesus humbled Himself and became even obedient unto death for you and me, that we might be saved from our pitiful state.
We can thank God for ministers who pray for us and bring us before Jesus, like this man’s friends did. They know if only we can be brought to Jesus we will receive help.
But woe to you if the spirit of the devil, the accuser of the brethren, enter you. Then you are filled with criticisms.
We read in Rev 12:11, “and they have conquered him by the Blood of the Lamb, and the word of their testimony and they loved not their lives unto death.”
In the matter of Job we read that satan said to God, “stretch out your hand” against Job. Isn’t it wonderful that satan had no power over Job. He had to get permission from God before he could do anything against Job.
When your sins are forgiven, satan has no power over you.
Thank God that Job remained in God’s presence and ran to God when he suffered.
If you have the Spirit of Christ in you, you will love the brethren, even as we read Paul wrote about his beloved brother Epaphras, and Peter wrote about his beloved brother Paul.
Beware, the devil is asking to test you like Job. What will your reaction be? Will you remain in the presence of the Lord or will you leave God’s presence with the accuser, the devil?