It’s another red-letter day! Let’s take a look at some red letter and see what we can glean.
Come with me to Mark 2:3-12.
Today Jesus actually gives His accusers proof. For much of Him ministry He did not offer any evidence to His skeptics. They pressed Him time and time again for confirmations and signs and He left them wanting. They questioned Him and He gave them more questions and less understanding.
But here in Mark 2 He gives them a reason to believe that He is Messiah, He is:
as Paul puts in Philippians—equal with God
and again Colossians—all the fullness of the Godhead
as the writer to the Hebrews states—the express image of God.
Here’s what’s going on. He’s in the house and there is a crowd as usual. This time there are a bunch of religious folk pressing in to question Him, to put Him to the test.
Luke drops a wonderful nugget into his telling of this story.
…And the power of the Lord was present to heal them. - Luke 5:17 NKJV
We can talk about that another day, but isn’t that wonderful. Even in this room full of skeptics, the power of the Lord was present there to heal them.
Back to the story, there is a paralyzed man with some really good friends. They carry him to Jesus on a stretcher but can’t get through the door. Because of the crowd, they can’t get the stretcher up to Jesus. So what do they do?
They carry their friend up onto the roof, (yikes) break through the roof, rig the stretcher with ropes and lower their friend down in front of Jesus.
Now Jesus sees all this and is clearly confused. (kidding) Obviously the man on the bed needs healing, and as we already noticed, the Lord is ready to go with the power to heal.
But instead of just breaking the tension and healing the man, Jesus scrolls through His options and chooses—provoke.
So many times when Jesus is healing the multitudes we see Him simply touch and bless, but this time He decides a lesson is in order.
It’s time to pull back the veil a little further and let the world see another level of His glory.
And Jesus seeing their faith said to the paralytic, "Son, your sins are forgiven." - Mark 2:5 NASB
Let’s review. The room is full of the religious muckity-mucks and Jesus decides to demonstrate His authority over sin.
It’s time for them to understand that Jesus was not just another pretender come to stir up discontent. Jesus is Messiah, Emanuel, the One promised to rescue and redeem His people. God with us.
It’s time for them to leave their nets, their accounts, their religious garb, take up their crosses, and follow Jesus.
"But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins"--He said to the paralytic, "I say to you, get up, pick up your pallet and go home." - Mark 2:10-11 NASB
This man who bursts onto the scene and starts stirring up the rabble is no pretender. He is the real deal. And the healing He carried proves it.
No false Messiah before Him, and there had been many, moved with compassion through the crowds and brought healing to the nation. Only Jesus.
And He’s the same today.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. - Hebrews 13:8 NASB
He’s still in the same business.
"THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD IS UPON ME,BECAUSE HE ANOINTED ME TO PREACH THE GOSPEL TO THE POOR.HE HAS SENT ME TO PROCLAIM RELEASE TO THE CAPTIVES,AND RECOVERY OF SIGHT TO THE BLIND,TO SET FREE THOSE WHO ARE OPPRESSED, TO PROCLAIM THE FAVORABLE YEAR OF THE LORD." - Luke 4:18-19 NASB
It’s His family business, you know.
Don’t be confused by what the religious folks tell you. Don’t be distracted by all the shiny stuff the World dangles before you.
It’s time to drop your distractions, take up your cross and get after Him.
As Philip told his brother Nathanial in John 1, We’ve found the Messiah…come and see.
While you’re at it—if you’re in His family, it’s time you take up the family business too!
"And as you go, preach, saying, 'The kingdom of heaven is at hand.' "Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. Freely you received, freely give. - Matthew 10:7-8 NASB
See you again soon.