Last night I read my daughters the story of the paralysed man lowered through the roof of a house by his four friends to be healed by Jesus. My daughter (4) asked why Jesus talked about the man’s sins? It was a good question, why not just say “you’re healed” why instead forgive his sins? As you do as a Mum, I had to think on my feet and ask God right there to lead me in my answer to her.
I explained to my daughter that sometimes (in those day) a person’s sickness was connected to their sin. So being sorry for his sin and having it forgiven meant being healed.
It really got me thinking!
Have you ever been in the presence of God and started to confess and repent? His presence is so pure, rich and holy and it brings to light what we’re not and what we’re lacking. What must it have been like for this man? He must have heard so many stories about this Jesus? He must have imagined a meeting with Jesus and how it would go and played out a thousand scenarios in his head. They hear where Jesus will be and 4 of his besties make a decision that their friend WILL be healed tonight. I can only image the miles they’ve carried their friend. Not only do they want this for him but for themselves.
Then they arrive and can’t get in. The paralysed man’s heart must have sunk, this was not one of the many scenerios, this is not going according to plan!
The verbal battle between the believers vs the doubters begins. “Let’s just quit, we tried but we can’t even get in, next time may be!” vs “we’re here now! There must be a way in!” The believes win and four men manage to not only get themselves but also a man on a stretcher onto a roof without dropping him! I’m impressed!!
Breaking apart the roof (without falling in – wow) then lowering their friend safely to where Jesus is speak. As the first few parts of the roof started to fall on people they must have thought the house was going to cave in. This would have slowly got everyone’s attention! From being outside with no way to get in, to being the centre of attention!
How does this man feel now? I wonder if he was arguing that maybe this wasn’t such a good idea. Err, can you hear the homeowner now shouting “what are you doing to my roof? That’s my roof!”
He’s slowly lowered from the roof. Remember, he’s laid on his back, all he can see is the faces of his 4 friends… then the roof… then the ceiling of the house (well, what’s left of it)… then he starts to see the walls of the room… the faces to everyone tightly packed in the house, it must be hot in there. I’m pretty sure he has Jesus’ full attention now. Right there, he comes face to face with Jesus, before finally being lowered all the way to the floor.
Now the paralysed man is centre stage and he feels… THE PRESENCE OF GOD! Suddenly everything and everyone fades and he feels conscious of himself, his sins, his shortcomings and he feels unworthy, maybe he starts to repent of things he’s done wrong, things he’s never addressed, things he forgot, things he never wanted to think about.
Looking up at Jesus with tears in his eyes, a mess of a man, paralysed, vulnerable and desperate. Jesus says “your sins are forgiven”.
Maybe it took that heart of repentance to lead him to true healing from the inside out.
How would you explain Jesus healing by forgiving sins; to a child? Please comment below.