Matthew 9:1-7 1AND JESUS, getting into a boat, crossed to the other side and came to His own town [Capernaum]. 2And behold, they brought to Him a man paralyzed and prostrated by illness, lying on a sleeping pad; and when Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralyzed man, Take courage, son; your sins are forgiven and the penalty remitted. 3And behold, some of the scribes said to themselves, This man blasphemes [He claims the rights and prerogatives of God]! 4But Jesus, knowing (seeing) their thoughts, said, Why do you think evil and harbor malice in your hearts? 5For which is easier: to say, Your sins are forgiven and the penalty remitted, or to say, Get up and walk? 6But in order that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins and remit the penalty, He then said to the paralyzed man, Get up! Pick up your sleeping pad and go to your own house. 7And he got up and went away to his own house.
In this passage we see that a paralyzed, sick man was brought to Jesus. Obviously the people who brought him knew that Jesus was healer, right? So what does Jesus do when He sees the man? He says “Your sins are forgiven”. I wonder if the man’s friends were a little disappointed that Jesus did not immediately heal his body. I wonder if they realized that Jesus did a far greater miracle by cleansing him on the inside. The religious leaders of the day were very upset when they heard Jesus forgive the man’s sins. Jesus knew what they were thinking and asked them if it was easier to say your sins are forgiven or rise up and walk.
This seems to be the opposite of what religious people in our day think. Why is it so easy to believe in salvation, that our sins can be forgiven, that we can be given new life in Christ, yet when it comes to healing so many have a problem understanding or believing that it is for them? Didn’t Jesus say that healing and salvation were equally as easy for Him to grant? Matthew 9:35 says 35And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people. And again in Acts 10:38 38How God anointed and consecrated Jesus of Nazareth with the [Holy] Spirit and with strength and ability and power; how He went about doing good and, in particular, curing all who were harassed and oppressed by [the power of] the devil, for God was with Him. Not only did Jesus spend a great deal of time healing sick people, He also sent His disciples out to do the same. Matthew 10:7-8 7And as you go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand! 8Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, drive out demons. Freely (without pay) you have received, freely (without charge) give. Then in Mark 16:17-18 He gives all believers that same power 17And these attesting signs will accompany those who believe: in My name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new languages; 18They will pick up serpents; and [even] if they drink anything deadly, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will get well. The same faith that allowed us to believe in Jesus and have our sins forgiven, is the same faith that will enable us to be made whole. If you are sick in body thank God for His healing power at work in you!