The Story of Jesus and the Forgiven Paralytic, Part 1 (Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign, Day 633 since Jan. 20, 2017 / Day 1,000 since Jan. 1, 2016)
TEXT: Matthew 9:1-8
1 And he entered into a ship, and passed over, and came into his own city.
2 And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee.
3 And, behold, certain of the scribes said within themselves, This man blasphemeth.
4 And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts?
5 For whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and walk?
6 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (then saith he to the sick of the palsy,) Arise, take up thy bed, and go unto thine house.
7 And he arose, and departed to his house.
8 But when the multitudes saw it, they marvelled, and glorified God, which had given such power unto men.
James Nisbet said, "In the world, we have tribulation; we have found that to be true. In Christ, we have peace; may we find that to be true also. We are to 'be of good cheer' because Christ has overcome the world, and He can cheer us when our hearts are breaking and the world is reeling under our feet."
After dealing with the demon-possessed men of the Gadarene coast, Jesus, heeding the wishes of the people of that town, "entered into a ship and came into his own city." We assume this to be Capernaum, the place where, a day earlier, he had resided at Peter's house. As Jesus returns to the city, He is met by men bringing their friend who is "sick of the palsy." Palsy is a kind of paralysis and weakening of the muscles that is often accompanied by involuntary tremors. In keeping with His other encounters with the sick, Jesus immediately notes the faith of the people involved.
The Bible says, "Jesus seeing their faith." How did Jesus "see" their faith? Of course, Jesus could look into these men's hearts and minds and know that they had faith in Him. But, Jesus saw their faith by their actions. They expended the energy to pick up their friend and carry him on his bed to this Man whom they believed could heal him. The parallel account in Luke tells us that there was a crowd gathered to hear Jesus teaching, and these friends took the paralyzed man to the roof of the house, tore the roof apart, and lowered the sick man into the house. That is what their faith led them to do. Jesus saw that faith; and it moved him to act on behalf of their friend.
We do not know if the sick man had any faith of his own. Perhaps, he had given up on believing that he could be healed of his condition. Jesus' statement to this man indicates that this might very well be the case. He "said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer." F.F. Bruce writes in his commentary: "With swift sure diagnosis, Jesus sees in the man not faith, but deep depression, associated probably with sad memories of misconduct, and uttering first a kindly hope-inspiring word, such as a physician might address to a patient: cheer up, child! He deals first with the disease of the soul."
Many, today, are experiencing paralysis -- not necessarily paralysis of the body, but paralysis of heart, mind, soul, spirit, and life. Do you feel like your life is going nowhere? Do you feel like you can't get out of bed in the morning because your vision of life is devoid of faith and hope? As though your feet are stuck in quickly-drying cement? This passage shows us that when we bring not just our problems, but our very selves to Jesus, he has a word of comfort and healing: "Son, daughter, be of good cheer!" There is no rationale given for this "good cheer" except that one is in the presence of the Son of God. Jesus didn't heal the man first and then tell him to be of good cheer. He told him to be of good cheer simply on the basis that he was now in the presence of the Great Physician, the divine Problem Solver, the Heart Healer, the Soul Saver. If we are to be of good cheer, we must get in the habit of bringing our problems to the Lord. And, if you already possess this good cheer, be like the friends of the paralyzed man and help your friends bring their problems to Jesus.
One hymnist wrote:
Rejoice in the Lord! Oh, let His mercy cheer;
He sunders the bands that enthrall;
Redeemed by His blood, why should we ever fear,
Since Jesus is our all in all?
Be strong in the Lord! rejoicing in His might,
Be loyal and true day by day;
When evils assail, be valiant for the right,
And He will be our strength and stay.
Confide in His Word, His promises so sure;
In Christ they are yea and amen;
Though earth pass away, they ever shall endure,
'Tis written over and over again.
Now, if you are with us today and you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to show you how you can place your faith and trust in Him for Salvation from sin and Hell.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God's law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: "For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God."
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: "For the wages of sin is death…"
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: "And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: "But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death."
Now that is bad news, but here's the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the Cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light and read "What To Do After You Enter Through the Door". Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, "I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture."
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.