Saturday, January 28, 2012

Do Nothing Gospel

"Son, your sins are forgiven." (Mark 2:5)

Got to reflect a little on the paralytic story found in Mark recently. In the story, the friends bring the paralytic to a house where Jesus is teaching. They couldn't get inside the place because the crowd was so large, so they went on the roof, dug a hole, and lowered the paralytic on a mat to the feet of Jesus. Jesus sees their faith and says to the man "your sins are forgiven." And then there's this controversy about how God could only forgive sins. So - to prove who He is - Jesus heals the man. The man gets up - walks out of the place in front of everyone. There's lots of amazement - all that. And there are a million angles in the story that I've heard about for years and years. There's leadership principles. Team Work. The divinity of Jesus. The problem of sin. etc.

But one of the things that was louder in the scripture this time (as I went over it) was how the paralytic did nothing. The only thing he did was to agree to be put in front of Jesus. That's it. (Actually - we're not even completely sure of that!) He did nothing at all. He didn't say any words. He didn't say a prayer. He didn't call Jesus Lord. He didn't do anything, except get near Jesus. I think that's interesting because a lot of Christians believe you have to say certain words - etc. Like - "Do you believe God died for your sins and rose from the grave?" - that's a common standard I've heard over the years - to get "right" with God. In this story - that doesn't happen at all. In fact, Jesus hadn't died yet - no cross - no resurrection. And - the paralytic said nothing. He was just plopped in front of Jesus. Bam - forgiven. I just find that interesting.

Another thing that I noticed is that the healing itself was more of a proclamation of who God is rather than the man getting the perfect answer to his "request" (which was never spoken - at least - within the scriptures) The miracle was about Jesus - not about the healing itself. It told the story of who God is - the person of Jesus. I find that interesting too.

Jesus has the power to forgive sins (even prior to the cross) and to break the laws of nature with healing because He is God in flesh.

Maybe we should spend more of our time trying to get closer to God rather than desiring the power of God. I know, at least for this story, the proximity of the paralytic ended up in a healing. More important - it led the paralytic to a restored relationship with God.

Maybe instead of figuring everything out (and trying to "do" the right things) - we should just get to the feet of Jesus (get close to Him) - and see what He does. He is good - and He's the good news.

May we learn how to drop our opinions, knowledge, and agendas and simply get close to our Savior (who is already by our side). As the scriptures say, "let us fix your eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith..." (Heb. 12:2)

Have a great day!