Luke 5:17 On one of those days, as he was teaching, Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting there, who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was with him to heal.
Luke 5:18 And behold, some men were bringing on a bed a man who was paralyzed, and they were seeking to bring him in and lay him before Jesus,
Luke 5:19 but finding no way to bring him in, because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and let him down with his bed through the tiles into the midst before Jesus.
Luke 5:20 And when he saw their faith, he said, “Man, your sins are forgiven you.”
Luke 5:21 And the scribes and the Pharisees began to question, saying, “Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?”
Luke 5:22 When Jesus perceived their thoughts, he answered them, “Why do you question in your hearts?
Luke 5:23 Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Rise and walk’?
Luke 5:24 But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins“—he said to the man who was paralyzed—”I say to you, rise, pick up your bed and go home.”
Luke 5:25 And immediately he rose up before them and picked up what he had been lying on and went home, glorifying God.
Luke 5:26 And amazement seized them all, and they glorified God and were filled with awe, saying, “We have seen extraordinary things today.”
Did you notice that funny little line at the start of this passage? “And the power of the Lord was with Him to heal.” Now don’t read what it doesn’t say, but appreciate what it does. It doesn’t say that the power wasn’t always on Jesus. It doesn’t say that He found the power or He could lose the power.
But the power of the Lord was with Him and that is what mattered. Even if Jesus wanted to do this or that, He did nothing outside of the will of the Father. They were we in union together to bring glory to one another.
With that com-union of loyalty, obedience, and love, it was as easy for Jesus to tell a paralyzed man to get up and walk as it was for Him to tell the guy that all of his sins were forgiven.
People surely thought that this man deserved his paralysis. He must have done something to be struck like that, right?! We are so good at justice sometimes!
Whatever this guy did, it was immaterial. Jesus forgave it and it wasn’t held against this man any more. Only God can forgive sins, and Jesus just did it. But what does that look like? What does a person look like when all of their sins are forgiven?
Do they cry?
Do they smile real big?
Do they get baptized? Then what after they dry out?
Nobody can see the forgiveness of sins just like nobody can see the wind. All you can see are its results.
So Jesus told the paralyzed guy to stand up.
So we befriend people and buy them dinner.
So we give people a ride into a neighborhood that we’d never visit.
So we wear a mask or keep our distance or sing songs on our neighbors porch.
Because the forgiveness of sins is invisible, but we aren’t.