The Healing of a Paralytic
The meaning of FAITH according to Corrie ten Boom is a Fantastic Adventure In Trusting Him.
In today’s gospel, a group of men wanted to save their paralyzed friend, ran and brought him to Jesus. They knew that they could not cure their friend but they could be the sick man’s servants by bringing him to Christ. This group of men had a trusted faith in Jesus. It did not matter even if they had to go through the roof. It is because they knew that Jesus could heal their friend. This is what it means to be a disciple of Jesus. We cannot save souls but we can be the servants who bring the souls to Christ. We do this when we motivate a person to go to Mass or confession or when we give a good example or when we speak to them about Christ.
On the other hand, the Pharisees and the scribes sat in front of Christ watching Him curing the sick. Earlier they had seen many more miracles but despite of those, they did not believe in Christ. Miracle after miracle didn’t change their minds. Jesus decides to give them a decisive miracle so that they will believe in Him by curing the paralytic and to show His power to forgive sins, since disease had been a sign of sinfulness in Jewish history. A Jewish teaching before was taught that sin is the fountain of all sickness and the forgiveness of this sin is the only foundation upon which a recovery from sickness. But still the Pharisees and the scribes did not in Him.
And so when this paralytic man was brought to Him for cure and seeing the faith of the men who brought the sick man to Him, Christ acknowledges them and says to the paralyzed man: “Your sins are forgiven.” But the Pharisees and scribes began to murmur. In order to prove that He has the power to forgive sins He makes a further show of love for the paralyzed man: He heals him of his paralysis. Christ will always be there to bring us closer to Him and through the Sacrament of Reconciliation He shows us the depth of his love by forgiving us our sins.
But on our part, are we ready to forgive just what like God did to us? I heard a woman saying: “I have forgiven her. I have said the words and refused to speak of it again. I have even hugged her, for heaven’s sake, what more does she wants.” You know the kind of forgiveness that she dispensed is a technical forgiveness. She forgave from the will and the mind but the heart held the offense and still demanded a justice for it. What she needed is to send the offense away forever and free the other person by forgiving her from the hearts.
I ask you to learn something which is related to forgiveness that, psychosomatic illnesses or physical illnesses that originate in the emotions, have received a great deal of attention in present medical literature. Numerous studies identify the connection between diseases like cancer and arthritis and strong feelings of anger, regret and bitterness. And so how often do we want God to give us a sign so we can follow what he does, that is forgiving us?
At the end let us reflect these words of George Herbert: “He that cannot forgive others, breaks the bridge over which he himself must pass if he would ever reach heaven; for everyone has needed to be forgiven.”
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