Thursday, January 2, 2014

The faith that brings Healing

And some men were carrying on a bed a man who was paralyzed; and they were trying to bring him in and to set him down in front of Him. (Luke 5:18 NASB)

The word translated here as "paralyzed" is paraly┼Ź and is most often used to indicated "paralysed or weak on one side".  The most common cause of one-sided paralysis is a stroke, which more commonly occurs in middle-aged and older people. This was likely an older man who was paralyzed as a result of a stroke. 

The word for "men" doesn't clarify the relationship of the men to the sick man, but the same story is related in Matthew and Mark, where we learn that there were four men. We also know that the four men initiated the visit to Jesus, not the paralyzed men, because Jesus said He was responding to the men's faith when He healed him. 

Take those facts and consider how this must have happened. The paralyzed man was lying on his mat, as always. The four men (sons, maybe?) had already made up their minds when they approached the man about going to Jesus, who was said to perform miraculous healings. This man did not have faith that Jesus could heal him, but that didn't matter to the four men. They were taking him to Jesus anyway.  They each took a corner, lifted him on his mat, and off they went. These men were so sure that Jesus could and would do a miracle that they hauled him through the streets of Capernaum and straight to the place where Jesus was teaching. 

The paralyzed man was powerless to change his condition. He did not believe Jesus could change it either. He believed he was stuck in this very weakened, difficult condition. The men, however, had such faith that Jesus could heal him that they carried him on his bed, despite his protests, all the way to where Jesus was teaching. They believed Jesus could and would heal him. They knew he did not have to stay the same. 

We are all either the sick man without faith, the men with more than enough faith to bring the ones we care about to Jesus, or the bystanders waiting to see what happens. Which are you?  Do you believe that Jesus can heal those you love? Will you bring them to Jesus? You can bring them straight to Jesus through your prayers, and have confidence that the Great Physician can and will heal them. Can He heal their wounds? Yes! Will He heal if your faith is great enough? Yes. Sometimes He heals this side of eternity and sometimes He heals on the other side, but He always heals.  

Today, use the faith you have, whether mustard-seed sized or the size of a mountain, and bring those you love to Jesus in prayer. Present them and their needs to Him. When He moves, you and your loved ones will be so glad you did.