(Mark 2: 1-12)

As it says in today’s Gospel reading, Jesus taught in a house of Capernaum. The house was overflowing with people. Many of them were gathered around the doors and windows to hear Him. At that time, four men brought a paralytic on his bed to be healed by Jesus.   Because of the crowd, they could not come in through the door.   What did they do?  Something very difficult and bold!  They carried the paralytic onto the roof of the house, and opened a big hole in it.   After that, they lowered him down in front of Jesus!   They did not consider the trouble or the risk of an accident happening, but brought the paralyzed man down from above, in sight of all the people!

What was it that moved these men to take this risk?  The holy Gospel was revealed to him:  “When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, Son, your sins are forgiven you” (Verse 5).  The Lord, as the doctor of the heart, saw the great faith of these five men.  Jesus would give the paralytic treatment as long as he was close to Him.  Nothing would be able to stand in their way.  When there was no way to pass through the crowd, not many people would be brave enough to go up on the roof and open it up to bring in someone sick and bedridden.  

These people are a wonderful example for us to imitate.  Bringing with faith to our Lord Jesus Christ all of our sorrows and every problem that concerns us, with the certainty that our generous Almighty God will respond and definitely answer our prayers.  Did we not see what happened to the Paralytic?  The sick man did not open his mouth and say a word, and Jesus healed him. The great thing is that he not only healed his body but also his soul from sins, which were the cause of his becoming paralytic.      

Here was exactly what the Apostle Paul wrote to the Ephesians: "God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us" (Ephesians 3:20). The Paralytic wanted to go to Jesus to heal him from this physical paralysis. He had even thought that Jesus could also heal the soul paralyzed by his sins!

And Jesus, in the healing of his soul, begins: "Son, your sins are forgiven." This word "Son," how much affection and love it has!  Jesus had before him a great sinner, a transgressor of the Law, a man who obviously was paralyzed and He calls him “Son!”  How much comfort this man would feel from this one word.   The Lord did not ask about his sinful life.   He received him with understanding and compassion!

This attitude of Our Lord gives us the courage to come to Him for help, no matter what great sins we have in our lives!  Whatever sin the Paralytic committed, all is forgiven, because the Lord has healed the sick man from the cause of his sickness, as an excellent Doctor would do.   We later see Jesus heal the body itself:  “I say to you, arise, take up your bed and go to your house.   Immediately he arose, took up his bed, and went out in the presence of them all so that they were amazed and glorified God” (Verses 11-12).  The Lord immediately healed him completely, without the need for physiotherapy or other help, which is usually required after a long period of immobility.  The Lord gave him the power and strength, so that he was not only able to stand up alone and walk, but also to lift up and carry his bed. 

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest (Matthew 11:28), is the invitation that the Lord offers each of us.  No obstacle, whether it comes from other people, our wickedness, or lack of trust can stop the desire of our soul to run to Jesus for help in our every need. If Jesus, with such eagerness, healed the body and the soul of the present paralytic, then we can be all the more certain that He will heal us, His Children, who with Holy Baptism become members of His Holy Body, His Church!

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