When the Door Becomes Accessible: Leaving Through What You Couldn’t Enter Through

Today’s selected reading continues in the New Testament gospel narrative concerning the life and ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ as it was written and recorded by John Mark. More specifically today’s passage is found in the second chapter of this New Testament book. “And again he entered into Capernaum, after some days; and it was noised that he was in the house. 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. And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four. 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. When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee. But there were certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their hearts, Why doth this man thus speak blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God only? 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? 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? 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), I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house. 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” (Mark 2:1-12).

 

            “And he went forth again by the sea side; and all the multitude resorted unto him, and he taught them. And as he passed by, he saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting at the receipt of custom, and said unto him, Follow me. And he arose and followed him. And it came to pass, that, as Jesus sat at meat in his house, many publicans and sinners sat also together with Jesus and his disciples: for there were many, and they followed him. And when the scribes and Pharisees saw him eat with publicans and sinners, they said unto his disciples, How is it that he eateth and drinketh with publicans and sinners? When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance” (Mark 2:13-17).

 

            “And the disciples of John and of the Pharisees used to fast: and they come and say unto him, Why do the disciples of John and of the Pharisees fast, but thy disciples fast not? And Jesus said unto them, Can the children of the bridechamber fast, while the bridegroom is with them? As long as they have the bridegroom with them, they cannot fast. But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken away from them, and then shall they fast in those days. No man also seweth a piece of new cloth on an old garment: else the new piece that filled it up taketh away from the old, and the rent is made worse. And no man putteth new wine into old bottles: else the new wine doth burst the bottles, and the wine is spilled, and the bottles will be marred: but new wine must be put into new bottles” (Mark 2:18-22).

            “And it came to pass, that he went through the corn fields on the sabbath day; and his disciples began, as they went, to pluck the ears of corn. And the Pharisees said unto him, Behold, why do they on the sabbath day that which is not lawful? And he said unto them, have ye never read what David did, when he had need, and was an hungred, he, and they that were with him? How he went into the house of God in the days of Abiathar the high priest, and did eat the shewbread, which is not lawful to eat but for the priests, and gave also to them which were with him? And he said unto them, The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath: Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath” (Mark 2:23-28).

 

            When you come to the second chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by John Mark you will find that it contains within it a number of interactions between Jesus of Nazareth and the religious elite during those days. In fact if you take the time to read the words which are found in this passage of Scripture you will find that directly associated with the words Jesus taught as well as to the healing and miracles Jesus performed would be the rejection of the scribes, the Pharisees and the various religious elitists which were present during those days. You cannot read the four gospel narratives and not encounter and come face to face with Jesus’ continual struggle and contending with the religious elite—and not only with the religious elite but also with religion and the spirit of religion which was present during those days. The entire second chapter of this gospel narrative written by John Mark is one large presentation of the ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ and how not only His words but also His actions angered, upset, frustrated and even offended the religious elite which were present during those days. What’s more is that it wasn’t only the actions of the Lord Jesus which so angered and offended the scribes and the Pharisees for it would also be the actions of His disciples as well. In fact I am convinced that when you read the words found in this passage of Scripture you must needs read it through the lens of the life and ministry of the Lord Jesus and how it would so upset and offend the religious elite which were present during those days. Oh we dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this for to do so would be to miss out on that which is found and contained within it concerning the life and ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ and how it would infuriate and enrage the scribes and the Pharisees.

 

            As you begin reading the words which are found in this particular chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by John Mark you will find Jesus once more entering into Capernaum and entering into a certain house. John Mark writes how it was noised that Jesus was in the house and as a direct result there were many who were gathered together unto Him insomuch that there was no room to receive them—no not even about or around the door. It would be here within this particular house Jesus would preach the word unto them. What John Mark presents us with next is a second account of this same encounter which the Lord Jesus would have—not only with those who had gathered within the house, not only with the scribes and the Pharisees, and not only with the man who was sick with the palsy, but also with the four men who had lowered this man before and in front of the Lord Jesus laying on his mat. In fact as you read the words which were found in this passage of Scripture you will find that there were undoubtedly different groups of people which were represented. Within the house there would of course be the Lord Jesus which might very well mean that His disciples were present with Him. At this point the Lord Jesus had not yet called Matthew so you have to wonder if the disciples who were with Him were the brothers Simon and Andrew and James and John. Also within this house would be the scribes which came for to hear and listen to the words which the Lord Jesus would teach and preach unto those who were present. This would also suggest there were other people who weren’t of the religious elite and yet came unto the house for to hear the Lord Jesus teach and preach.

 

            The more you read the words which are found in this passage of Scripture the more you can and will be brought face to face with the incredible truth that there were two more groups of people who were present in this passage of Scripture. As you read the words which are found in this text you will find that there was also the man who was sick with the palsy and the four men who carried him as he lie there upon his mat. Upon reading the words found in this passage of Scripture you will find that Jesus would enter a certain house and it was noised abroad that He was in the house. As the news spread concerning His presence within the house there would be many who would gather together for to hear and listen to the words He would teach and preach. So great and so vast was the number of those who came to hear and listen to the Lord Jesus teach and preach that there was no room to receive them—not even around and about the door of the house. Jesus would in turn preach the gospel of the kingdom unto them just as He had down in the synagogues and in other towns during his earthly ministry. What makes this narrative all the more intriguing when you consider it is this sort of interruption and unscripted event that would take place. John Mark would be the second gospel author that would present us with the account of this man who was sick with the palsy and who was brought unto the Lord Jesus by others who would carry him. It is in this gospel narrative we find and read that it was a combined total of four men who would bear up this man who was sick with the palsy upon his mat that they might bring him unto the Lord Jesus.

 

            I have to admit there is a part of me that can’t help but wonder whether or not this man was the one who desired to be brought unto the Lord Jesus that he might be healed of the palsy. If you take the time to read the words within this passage you will find that Jesus’ response to the man who was set down before Him would not be based on but rather the faith of the four who had borne and brought him unto Him in the midst of the house. Both the apostle Matthew and John Mark describe how Jesus would speak to and address this man—not because of the faith that was present within his own heart and soul but rather because of the faith of those men who had borne him. This actually leads me to believe and wonder whether or not these four men were the ones who initiated the journey of this man to the place where the Lord Jesus was. What’s more is that as I read the words found in this passage of Scripture I cannot help but think about and consider the fact that it might very well have been these men who urged and implored this man to come unto Jesus that he might be healed of the palsy. Not only this but I can’t help but encounter and come face to face with the incredible truth and reality of those who are willing to carry others to the Lord Jesus. When this man could not make his way unto Jesus and unto the place where He was these four men would bear him up and carry him to the place where they heard and knew Jesus was. Not only this but when they recognized and understood they could not get into the house where Jesus was because of the press they would indeed become creative in their approach to bring this man unto the place where the Lord Jesus was.

            CARRY ME TO JESUS! As you read the four gospel narratives you will find that when the Lord Jesus was forced to carry His cross to the place of the Skull where He would ultimately be crucified and put to death He could and could not carry the cross alone. The gospel authors all agree that the Roman centurions and soldiers compelled a man named Simon of Cyrene to carry the cross of the Lord Jesus unto the place of the Skull where He would be crucified. We know within the gospel narratives that we have indeed been called to carry our cross and how when Jesus Himself came unto that moment where He needed to carry His own cross He could not do it alone or in and of His own strength. There would be another who would have to come alongside Him and help Him carry His cross unto the place where He would ultimately be killed and crucified. That which makes this important to recognize and understand is there will be times within our life when we will need others to come alongside us and help us carry our cross while there will be other times when we will need others to carry us to Jesus. There might very well be times in our life when we ourselves cannot make our way unto the Lord Jesus and will need others to come alongside us and carry us unto Jesus. Perhaps the single greatest question we must needs ask ourselves is whether or not we do in fact have those who are willing and who would indeed carry us to Jesus that we might be healed and made whole in His presence.

 

            The words and language found in this passage of Scripture is absolutely astonishing when you take the time to think about it for it calls and draws our attention to the incredible reality of these four men who were willing to carry this man unto Jesus. In fact the more you read the words found in this passage of Scripture the more you can and will be brought face to face with the reality and truth that these men not only arrived unto the place where this man was lying upon his bed but they also pick him up while still laying on his bed that they might bring him unto the Lord Jesus. Scripture is entirely and altogether unclear as to how far these men carried this man to the place where they knew the Lord Jesus—only that these men would indeed carry this man lying upon his mat. Oh I can’t help but wonder what this sight would have looked like in the midst of Capernaum as these four men would carry this man who was sick with the palsy upon a mat through the streets of the city. Was it possible that these four men were looked upon with disdain and disgust by those who were present in the midst of the city because they were carrying this man lying upon the mat? Is it possible that those who witnessed and observed these four men carrying this man lying upon his mat were indeed wondering and marveling how and why these men would carry this man who was lying upon his mat through the streets of the city. Were these men stopped while they were on their way to the place where they head the Lord Jesus was present and asked what they were doing? Even if they were stopped would these men even entertain the questions and conversation others had knowing they were engaging themselves in important business on behalf of this man?

 

            I have to admit that as I read the words which are found in this passage of Scripture I am brought face to face with the tremendous and incredible truth surrounding these four men and how they were indeed willing to carry this man unto the place where the Lord Jesus was. Scripture is unclear whether or not these four men were family members or simply friends of this man—only that they bore him up and brought him unto the place where the Lord Jesus was. Oh it is with this being said I find myself coming face to face with two distinct realities concerning the example of these four men. The first of these two realities is whether or not we are willing to be such a one unto others who need to come unto Jesus and yet perhaps are unable or are perhaps hesitant to do so. Are we as the disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ ready, willing and able to be such who would take up and bear others unto the Lord Jesus Christ knowing that He has the authority and power to provide for them healing, cleansing, deliverance, freedom, wholeness and the like? Do we possess the humility and the compassion within our hearts to be those who would carry others unto Jesus—particularly and especially through prayer and intercession? Are we gracious and compassionate enough within our hearts and our spirits to be those who are willing and able to carry others unto the Lord Jesus—particularly and especially when we know and understand the power of the Lord was present to provide unto them everything they need and have needed?

 

            The second reality which I can’t help but encounter within this passage of Scripture is whether or not we have others in our lives who are willing to carry and bring us unto the Lord Jesus. Do we as the saints of God and disciples of the Lord Jesus have those around and about us who would be willing to carry and bring us unto the presence of the Lord Jesus and unto that place where it is noised He is present? There is something truly unique and powerful about the words which are found in this passage for within it we come face to face with four men who were willing to bear up and carry this man unto the Lord Jesus that he might be healed of the palsy. What’s more is that not only did these men carry this man unto the place where the Lord Jesus was but when they arrived at that place and saw they could not enter into the house they could have easily set the man down outside the house to wait for the Lord Jesus to depart. These men could have left this man lying on his mat outside the house and left him to fend for himself as he would be forced to cry out unto the Lord Jesus for mercy. What we must needs recognize and understand concerning this passage is that this man who was sick with the palsy did not have to make his way unto the Lord Jesus by himself. What’s more is that this man who was sick with the palsy did not have to cry out with his voice asking the Lord Jesus for mercy to heal him of the palsy which was present within his physical body. This man who was sick with the palsy was brought unto the place where the Lord Jesus was that he might receive that which these four men knew Jesus could offer him.

 

            Perhaps one of the greatest truths found in this passage of Scripture is when you think about the fact that these men could have very easily left this man outside the house and departed from him. Stop for a moment and think about this narrative and account for it would have been very easy for these men to feel they did their duty and service unto this man carrying him unto the place where the Lord Jesus was as they brought him to the house. When they saw that they could not enter into the house because of the press which was present in the midst of that place they would not simply leave this man outside the house waiting for the Lord Jesus to exit and depart. These men saw they could not enter into the house and place where the Lord Jesus was and as a direct result of this they would take things a step further and a step above that which we might think and expect for them to do. It would have been very easy for these men to merely carry this man unto the house and place where the Lord Jesus was and then left the man to cry out unto the Lord Jesus and indeed fend for Himself. If there is one thing we must needs understand, however, is how that which caused the sins of this man to be forgiven and that which would ultimately result in this mean receiving healing from the Lord Jesus would be the faith of these men. It would not necessarily be the faith of this man that would bring about his healing but it would be the faith of these men which would result in this man receiving forgiveness of his sins—and not only forgiveness of sins but also healing of the palsy which was present within his physical body.

 

            I have to admit the more I read the words which are found in this passage of Scripture the more I am brought face to face with the awesome truth surrounding these man and how they were determined to do whatever was necessary to not only get this man in front of the Lord Jesus but also to help him get that which he so desperately needed within his life. With this being said I find myself wondering if this man knew that when he entered into the presence of the Lord Jesus he would find his sins forgiven. Despite the fact this man was sick with the palsy there is a part of me that can’t help but wonder if when he was in the presence of the Lord Jesus he was not necessarily confronted with his physical condition but with his spiritual condition. Is it possible that when we read the words found in this passage of Scripture we are brought face to face with this man who was indeed sick with the palsy and yet how he perhaps felt guilty, condemned, accused and ashamed of his sins which were present within his life? How absolutely astonishing it is to read the words found in this passage of Scripture and consider how it would be the faith of these men which would prompt Jesus to emphatically and compassionately declare unto this man that his sins were forgiven him. It would not be the faith of this man that would cause Jesus to declare unto him that his sins were forgiven but it would be the faith of these men—these men who would indeed carry him unto the place where the Lord Jesus was. What’s more is that Scripture does not reveal much about the faith which was present within the hearts and spirits of these men which leads us to assume that their faith was demonstrated through their actions. As we read the words found in this passage of Scripture we must needs recognize that when Jesus saw the faith of these men he saw their faith demonstrated through action—and not only action but also in humility and compassion.

 

            It is with this concept of faith in action that prompts me to consider the words which James the brother of Jude wrote in the second chapter of the epistle which bore his name found in the New Testament. Contained and found within the second chapter of the New Testament epistle written by James we find two incredibly important truths which we must needs recognize and understand when considering this passage of Scripture. The first is that of partiality and judgment towards others among us in our midst while the second is that of faith without works being dead just as the body without the spirit is dead. As we read the words found in this passage of Scripture we must needs recognize and come face to face with the faith of these men and how Jesus recognized their faith—perhaps by that which He perceived within their hearts and spirits but I would dare say more so by their actions on behalf of this man who was sick with the palsy. It is with this being said I invite you to consider the following words which are found in the second chapter of the New Testament epistle written by James beginning to read with and from the first and opening verse:

 

            “My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons. For if there come unto your assembly a man with a gold ring, in goodly apparel, and there come in also a poor man in vile raiment; and ye have respect to him that weareth the gay clothing, and say unto him, Sit thou here in a good place; and say to the poor, Stand thou there, or sit here under my footstool; Are ye not then partial in yourselves, and are become judges of evil thoughts? Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him? But ye have despised the poor. Do not rich men oppress you, and draw you before the judgment seats? Do not they blaspheme that worthy name by the which ye are called? If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well: But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors. For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law. So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty. For he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath shewed mercy; and mercy rejoiceth against judgment” (James 2:1-13).

 

            Please don’t miss and lose saight of the significance of the words found in this passage of Scripture for this passage calls and draws our attention to the sin and transgression within our hearts and lives of partiality. It is indeed a sin and transgression against the commandment of the Lord to be partial in our judgment of others. Within this section of Scripture James calls and invites us to examine our own heart and treatment of people and whether or not we are those who not only show partiality in judgment toward others but also whether or not we are those who show favoritism toward those who enter in among us in our midst. This is something we must needs understand and pay close attention to for it helps us to identify potential pitfalls and dangers within our own life. We as the saints of God have indeed been called to be vessels and conduits of compassion, grace and humility and as a direct result of this we must needs acknowledge the fact that we must not be those who show partiality and favoritism towards others. It is with this in mind I invite you to also consider the following words which James goes on to write in the same chapter within this New Testament epistle and book. Consider if you will the following words which are found in this chapter beginning to read with and from the fourteenth verse:

 

            “What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? Can faith save him? If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, and one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. Yea, a man say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: Shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. But wilt thou know, O vain. Man, that faith without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only. Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way? For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also” (James 2:14-26).

 

            I am absolutely convinced we must needs pay close attention to the words presented in this passage of Scripture for within it we encounter the tremendous truth surrounding faith without works being dead. Having just declared unto those to whom he was writing that partiality and favoritism is indeed a sin and transgression in the sight of the living God we find James going on to describe how there would be those who showed and demonstrated their faith without works and how he would show and demonstrate his faith by works. What’s more is James would emphatically declare that faith without works is dead being alone. Not only this but James would go on to declare that just as the body without the spirit is dead so also would faith without works be dead. This is something we must needs acknowledge and understand when seeking to understand the second chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by John Mark for when he writes of these men who brought this man unto the Lord Jesus they were recognized and acknowledged by the Lord Jesus. Oh although Jesus might not have directly commended them for their faith or even commenting on their faith Scripture would indicate that it was when Jesus saw their faith that He would proceed to declare unto this man that his sins were forgiven. What we must needs understand when reading the words found in this passage of Scripture is that when the Lord Jesus saw the faith of these men He would proceed to declare unto and concerning this man that his sins were forgiven. The Lord Jesus would indeed see and behold the faith of these men and as a direct result declare un to this man that his sins were forgiven. What we must needs understand when considering the words found in this passage of Scripture is that it brings us face to face with the wonderful truth surrounding the faith of these men. It would be the faith of these men that would indeed bring Jesus into the place where He would be so moved that he would forgive the sins of this man who was sick with the palsy.

 

            If there is one thing I can’t help but be absolutely and incredibly captivated by when reading the words found in this passage of Scripture it’s how the Lord Jesus would indeed behold the faith of these four men and it would so move Him that He would declare unto this man who was sick with the palsy that his sins would be forgiven him. There is something truly unique and powerful about the words we read in this passage of Scripture for they call and draw our attention to the truth surrounding the words the Lord Jesus spoke unto and concerning this man. Jesus observed and beheld the faith of these men and I would dare say that the faith which He observed was faith in action. I continue to believe that these men could have simply brought this man unto the house where the Lord Jesus was present and left him outside to wait for Jesus to come out of the house. These men could have brought this man unto the house where the Lord Jesus was and left him there to fend for himself as he would have waited until Jesus departed from the house and went about His way. Stop for a moment and consider the words we see in this passage and how these men could have brought this man as far as the house where Jesus was and simply stopped there. It was indeed possible for these men to bring the men to the house where Jesus was and yet not complete the process of bringing this man unto Jesus Himself. It should be noted that these men were not interested in merely bringing this man unto the house where Jesus was but rather they sought to bring this man unto Jesus Himself. There is something truly astonishing and captivating about the words we find in this passage of Scripture and how the words we see here demonstrate the faith of these men who wouldn’t merely bring this man unto the house where the Lord Jesus was but would bring this man unto the actual place where Jesus was sitting.

 

            I sit here today thinking about this particular account and narrative within the life of the Lord Jesus and I am brought face to face with the truth surrounding the Lord Jesus and His observance of the faith of these men. The Lord Jesus would indeed observe the faith of these men and it would be His observance of the faith of these men that would cause Him to respond in kind concerning the forgiveness of this man’s sins. What’s more is that as you read the words found in this passage you will find that it was Jesus’ observance of the faith of these four men who brought this man unto the Lord Jesus that would prompt Him to declare unto him his sins were forgiven and yet it would be in response to the murmuring and grumbling of those of the scribes which were present that would cause Him to proceed with healing this man of the palsy. Stop for a moment and consider the words which we see in this passage of Scripture and how the Lord Jesus would declare unto this man that his sins were forgiven him because of the faith of those men who brought him unto the house where He was and yet it would be in response to the murmuring and complaining of the scribes within their hearts that would cause him to respond to them by healing this man of the palsy which plagued his body. What’s more is that you will find the Lord Jesus asking the scribes which was easier—to declare unto this man that his sins were forgiven or to heal him. With this being said and asked of these scribes Jesus would go on to declare unto them how that to demonstrate that the Son of man has authority on the earth to forgive sins He would speak and declare unto the man with the palsy that he rise up from the bed upon which he was lying and go his way. Immediately the man would receive strength in his body and would be healed and would rise up in the midst of all those who were present. 

 

            There is something absolutely astounding about the words and language that is contained in this passage of Scripture for it calls and draws our attention to the absolutely wonderful truth surrounding the Lord Jesus and that which He wrought in the life of this man. The Lord Jesus would observe the faith of these four men and it would be in reponse to their faith He would declare unto this man that his sins were forgiven. It would be their faith which would not only bring this man to the house where the Lord Jesus was but also bring Him into the presence of the Lord Jesus that would cause Jesus to respond the way that He did. What we must needs understand concerning this particular truth is that when we read the words found in this passage there is a vast difference between bringing someone to the house and place where the Lord Jesus was and actually bringing that person into the very presence of the Lord Jesus. These men initially brought this man unto the place and house where the Lord Jesus was and when they witnessed and beheld the fact that they could not enter into the house and bring this man into the presence of the Lord Jesus they would be creative and come up with a different way of getting this man into the house and more importantly into the presence of the Lord Jesus. These men would bring the Lord Jesus into the presence of the Lord Jesus as opposed to simply bringing Him unto the house where He was. These men would indeed bring this man to the house where they heard the Lord Jesus was and I would dare say that had they been able to enter into the house through the door they would have entered and set this man right in the presence of the Lord Jesus. When, however, the door was inaccessible these men would proceed to come up with an entirely different way of bringing this man into the presence of the Lord Jesus.

 

            If there is one thing we must needs recognize and understand when reading the words found in this passage of Scripture it’s that these men were not only determined to bring this man into the presence of the Lord Jesus but they were determined to bring this man into His presence that he might receive healing within his physical body. The question I can’t help but wonder is whether or not these men knew and comprehended that what this man desired more than anything might very well have been forgiveness of sins. Is it possible that this man might have thought that the palsy which plagued his body was in direct response to the sins which might have been present within his life? I would dare say that this man might very well have thought and believed that whatever sins might have been present within his life might very well have resulted in the palsy which was present within his physical person and body. What’s more is that for Jesus to declare unto him that his sins were forgiven seem to suggest and indicate that this man did indeed have sins which were present within his heart and life. There is not a doubt in my mind when reading the words found in this passage of Scripture that this man did indeed and did in fact have sins which were present within his heart and life. This man was brought into the presence of the Lord Jesus because he was sick with the palsy and yet what we find taking place is his receiving forgiveness of sins. Oh there is something to be said about this particular encounter between the Lord Jesus and how before He would even address the palsy which was present within the life of this man he would first address his spiritual condition.

 

            The more I read and consider the words and language found in this passage of Scripture the more I am brought face to face with the incredible truth surrounding the contrast between the spiritual condition of this man versus the physical condition of this man. Oh this man might very well have been brought into the presence of the Lord Jesus because of the physical condition which was present within his body and yet the Lord Jesus would speak to and address the spiritual condition within his heart and soul first. It would have been very easy for those men who brought this man unto the place where they heard the Lord Jesus was and left him there outside the door just as it would have been very easy for the Lord Jesus to simply forgive this man for his sins and do absolutely nothing for his physical condition. What we find concerning this particular passage of Scripture is that not only did the Lord Jesus send this man on his way forgiven of his sins but the Lord Jesus would also send him forth completely healed within his physical body. HEALED AND FORGIVEN! How absolutely incredible it is to read the words which are found in this passage of Scripture and consider how the Lord Jesus would not only address this man’s spiritual condition for forgiveness but he would also address the obvious condition of this man within his physical body. It would be obvious to all those present in the house that this man had a physical condition within his body and that he was lowered into the presence of the Lord Jesus to bring healing to his body. What might not have been as obvious unto those who were present in the house was the struggle and conflict this man might very well have had within his heart and soul. I would dare say that in addition to the struggle this man had with the palsy within his physical flesh he might very well have had an issue, conflict and struggle within his heart and soul and perhaps the tremendous shame, guilt and condemnation he felt as a direct result of his sins.

 

            The words and language found in this passage of Scripture call and invite us to encounter Jesus the Christ the Son of the living God who not only sends men and women forth from his presence healed but also forgiven. On this particular occasion this man would receive forgiveness for his sins before he would receive healing in his physical body and yet he would leave with both. Pause for a moment and consider the tremendous language that is found within this passage of Scripture and how this man would indeed leave with his sins forgiven and his physical body healed by the Lord Jesus. It would be in response to the faith of these four men that would result in this man experiencing forgiveness of his sins and it would be in response to the murmuring and complaining of the scribes within themselves concerning his being forgiven his sins that would further continue the work of bringing about healing within the physical body of this man. What’s more is that with this being said we must needs understand that when it comes to forgiveness of sins the spirit of religion has always had and will always have something to say. If there is something we must needs recognize and understand concerning religion it’s that it has never and will never enjoy those who experience freedom and deliverance within their personal lives. One thing we must needs understand concerning religion and the spirit of religion is that it absolutely hates when men and women experience freedom within their lives—and not only experience freedom within their lives but also experience freedom in the presence of the Lord Jesus. There are those who have received forgiveness for their sins and this very reality and concept has caused religion and the spirit of religion to be absolutely infuriated and outraged within itself.

 

            I read the words found in this passage of Scripture and I am brought face to face with the tremendous truth surrounding the response of religion to forgiveness of sins. This man would be brought into the presence of the Lord Jesus by four men who dared to demonstrate their faith through action and it would be in response to their faith the Lord Jesus would indeed declare unto this man that his sins would be forgiven. This is something we must needs recognize and understand for it would be the faith of four men sins would be forgiven and it would be in response to the murmuring of religious men that would cause the Lord Jesus to complete the healing of this man. This is not to say the Lord Jesus would not have healed this man regardless but there has to be an underlying reason why Jesus would see the faith of these men and would speak to and address the sins within this man’s heart and soul. It would have been very easy for the Lord Jesus to speak to the physical condition of this man and to declare unto him that he was healed and/or command him to rise from his bed, however, that is not at all what happened. The Lord Jesus would see the faith of these four men and it would be their faith as contrasted to the faith of this man which would bring the Lord Jesus to the place where He would emphatically declare unto this man that his sins were forgiven him. This is something we must needs recognize and understand when considering the words presented in this passage of Scripture for we must needs understand that there are times when it is the faith of others and their bringing us unto and into the presence of the Lord Jesus that brings about healing and transformation within our hearts and lives.

            There is something to be said about the faith of these men—and not only the faith of these men but also their willingness to bring this man into the presence of the Lord Jesus—for it invites us into the place where we recognize whether or not we are those whose faith can indeed bring about change, transformation, healing and forgiveness within the lives of others. There is something truly unique and astonishing about the words we see in this passage of Scripture for they call and draw our attention to the reality of men who were willing to bring this man into the presence of the Lord Jesus—and not only bring this man into the presence of the Lord Jesus but also demonstrate their faith through bringing Him into His presence. These men weren’t willing to merely leave this man at the door of the house but were willing to take this man even further and where the door was not accessible to them they would make a way in the midst of the roof. These men would not have access to Jesus the way they thought they would and yet they were determined to gain that access unto Him. Oh we dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this for it brings us face to face with the truth that sometimes the way we think we might and can come unto Jesus might not be available. These men might very well have thought they could bring this man into the presence of the Lord Jesus through the front door and yet the truth of the matter is that this simply was not the case. These men could not bring this man unto and into the presence of the Lord Jesus through the front door and yet they were determined to not let this be a deterrent for them. These men were entirely and altogether unrelenting in their faith for when they could not get through the front door they would make a way through the roof that their friend and companion might enter into and experience the presence of the Lord Jesus.

 

            I have to admit the more I read the words which are found in the second chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by John Mark the more I am brought face to face with the tremendous truth of the contrast between religion and the spirit of religion as well as the disciples of the Lord Jesus and those who encountered and interacted with Him. If you begin reading the words which are found within this portion of Scripture you will find that while Jesus was in Capernaum He entered into a house which would be filled with a great multitude of people when it was noised that He was present. It would be in this house where not only would forgiveness take place but so also would healing take place. In the opening verses of this text we find four men who would carry a man who was sick with the palsy unto the place where Jesus was. Much to their surprise when they arrived at the place there was no way to access the Lord Jesus through the door of the house. What makes this absolutely amazing is that their faith would not let them be deterred or moved and they would create their own path and access to the Lord Jesus. These four men were determined to get their friend into the presence of the Lord Jesus and would not only carry him to the roof of the house but would uncover enough of the roof to lower him down before and in the presence of the Lord Jesus. Imagine what it must have been like on this particular day as those who were present—including the Lord Jesus and His disciples—saw this man being lowered before and in front of the Lord Jesus. It would be once this man was lowered in front of Him that Jesus would look upon and behold the faith of these four men and proclaim this man’s sins were forgiven.

 

 

            As you continue reading in this passage of Scripture you will encounter Jesus healing this man of the palsy which was present within his physical body and yet not because of the faith of the four men who had brought Him. The further you delve into this passage of Scripture the more you will find that when Jesus offered this man forgiveness for his sins it would offend and anger the scribes which were present in the midst of the house. As a direct result of this the scribes would murmur and grumble amongst and within themselves concerning Jesus offering forgiveness unto this man and how God was the only one who could forgive sins. As a direct result of this—and not only as a direct result of their murmuring and grumbling but also to demonstrate that He had authority on earth to forgive sins—Jesus would say unto the man sick with the palsy and instruct him to rise, take up his mat, and go unto his way to his own house. John Mark writes how immediately this man arose, took up his bed and went forth before them all insomuch that they were all amazed. What makes this all the more intriguing is when you think about and consider that this man while laying upon his mat could not gain access to the Lord Jesus because of the press that was around Jesus and the door which would grant access to Him. After he was healed, however, John. Mark writes how he would take up his bed and would go forth before them all. Pause for a moment and consider how this man could not gain access and entrance to the Lord Jesus while he was lying on his mat but once he was healed and forgiven he would depart and exit the very door he could not originally enter.

 

            I have to admit I am absolutely and incredibly captivated by this thought and concept of this man departing through and by the same door which he could not immediately go through upon coming unto this house. When these four men brought this man unto the place where the Lord Jesus was this man who was sick with the palsy could not enter through the door because the house was filled and there was no room even about the door. What makes this passage so incredibly unique and powerful when you take the time to think about it is when you consider that the very door which was initially closed and inaccessible unto this man while laying upon the mat would now be opened unto him. Imagine the sight on this particular day as this man who was lowered down before the crowd of people within the house lying upon a mat and the sounds as Jesus not only offered him forgiveness for his sins but also commanded him to rise, take up his mat and go his way. Take this a step further and consider the fact that after this man received forgiveness in the presence of the Lord Jesus as well as healing he would depart through the very door he could not previously enter. What a truly astonishing and powerful truth this is when you consider it for there is something to be said about not being able to come unto the Lord Jesus the way you might have thought and yet after you received healing and forgiveness from the Lord that original point of access was now available to you. Isn’t it amazing what is open and available unto you after spending time in the presence of the Lord Jesus? Isn’t it truly astonishing to think about and consider the absolutely incredible truth surrounding this man’s encounter with Jesus and how that which was previously unavailable to him would now become available and accessible to him because he was healed and forgiven.

 

            WHEN JESUS OFFERS YOU A DOOR! WHEN JESUS MAKES THE DOOR ACCESSIBLE TO YOU! WHEN JESUS OPENS THE DOOR TO YOU! There is something truly beautiful and captivating about the words which are found in this passage of Scripture for within it we are brought face to face with the door of the house which at the time this man would arrive at the house carried by these four men was assumed to be the only way to gain access to and enter into the presence of the Lord Jesus. Imagine what this man who was sick with the palsy thought when he arrived at the house and saw that he could not enter into the house through the door—and not only through the door but also through what he perceived as the only way into the presence of the Lord Jesus. What’s more is imagine his surprise when he would be carried up to the roof of the house by these men and as they would uncover the roof of the house thus allowing and making an opening for him to be let down into the presence of the Lord Jesus. These men would lower this man down into the presence of the Lord Jesus and as a direct result of their faith this man would not only experience forgiveness of his sins but he would also be healed of the palsy which was present within his body. That which adds a whole new element to this is when you consider the fact that once this man was healed of the palsy and was able to rise from his bed and take it up he would be able to leave through the very door he wasn’t able to enter through. LEAVING THROUGH WHAT YOU COULDN’T ENTER THROUGH!

 

            I cannot escape this concept of that which was made available unto this man after he was lowered into the presence of the Lord Jesus. This man would be brought unto the place where the Lord Jesus and would be brought unto the place where he knew that Jesus was teaching and preaching the gospel concerning the kingdom. What’s more is that this man would be lowered into the presence of the Lord Jesus and would not only experience forgiveness of his sins and be healed of the palsy which was present within his body. Stop and consider this for a moment for when we read the words found in this passage of Scripture we find the Lord Jesus forgiving this man of his sins and healing him of the palsy within his physical body which would as a direct result open up this door unto him. There is something truly powerful about being in the presence of the Lord Jesus and how there are times when we enter into the presence of the Lord Jesus and that which wasn’t previously available unto us is all of a sudden available. The more we read the passage which is found in this passage of Scripture is when you consider the fact that forgiveness wasn’t available unto this man prior to entering into the presence of the Lord Jesus. Prior to entering into to the presence of the Lord healing within his physical body wasn’t available. Not only this but even when he arrived at the house where the Lord Jesus was he would notice that the door was closed and inaccessible to him. Imagine the fact that the door might have been actually been opened and yet how this man could not enter through the door while lying on the mat. It is very possible that the door to the house was indeed open and yet because of the great crowd of people surrounding Jesus and the door this man would not be able to enter through it.

 

            If there is one thing Scripture demonstrates and reveals unto us it’s that nothing is ever written by coincidence or happenstance. It is absolutely no coincidence John Mark not only chose to include the fact that there were so many people in the house that there was no more room to receive anyone—and not only this but also that there was no room to receive anyone about and through the door of the house. Stop and consider the fact that it might have been possible for this door to be opened unto the house and yet this man could not enter through that door while he was lying upon the mat. Oh I am sure this man saw the door and knew that what you normally do when you see doors and want to gain access unto a place you open the door and enter. On this particular day entering through the door was not possible because there was a crowd of people before and about it. Not only this but there was no room within the house itself because of the great crowd of people that was present within it. Pause for a moment and consider this and how absolutely incredible it is to think about the fact that what this m an might very well have thought he could enter through would not be accessible to him because of all those others who were present within the house and perhaps even because of those who were about the door on the outside.

 

As I bring this writing to a close I find it absolutely incredible to think about and consider the absolutely wonderful truth surrounding the door of this house and how although you would think you could enter in through the door—especially when Jesus was in the house—the door of this house would be closed unto this man who was sick with the palsy. Oh it might very well have been that the door to the house was actually open and even that the four men who carried this man upon his bed could see Jesus in the house and yet how they could not enter in through the door because of the throng of people before and round about it. There is something to be said about the words and language we find in this passage of Scripture and how although the door might have been opened and although they might have seen and heard the Lord Jesus teaching in the house the door was not accessible unto them. It would be the faith of the four men who brought this man unto the Lord Jesus that would actually allow them to bypass the door and gain access to the Lord Jesus through the roof. What’s more is these men would lower this man who was sick with the palsy down through the opening they had made in the roof that their friend might gain access to the presence of Jesus. Although the door to the house was closed and inaccessible to them because of the people the faith of these men would make a way where there seemed to be no way. As a direct result of this—not only would this man receive healing for the palsy within his physical body and rise up taking his mat with him, and not only would he receive forgiveness for his sins but he would also depart from the house through the very door which was previously inaccessible to him. Please don’t miss this for one encounter with the Lord Jesus not only afforded this man forgiveness for his sins, and it not only wrought healing within this physical body but it would also make that which was previously inaccessible and unavailable unto him all of a sudden available.

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