For a more enriching experience,
go down on your knees to pray or take it one step further
and prostrate yourself (lay face down) on the floor while praying.
Father, today's reading is powerful in so many ways. There is the example of profound Faith by those in attendance. There is the profound Faith of the sick man himself agreeing to it. There is the example of a possible 'burden of guilt' by the sick man and how being sick could hurt him spiritually because of the toll it took on his physical body. There is the example of judgment and impulse without thinking by the crowd. And there is the example of how rebellious, courageous and wise Jesus is. Jesus point blank them the question, "For which is easier, to say, `Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, `Rise and walk'?" The obvious answer for us humans is to answer, "Well, it's easier to say 'Your sins are forgiven.'" But Jesus, being Jesus, does both. He goes on to tell the paralytic man that not only are His sins forgiven, because He has the power to forgive them, but He tells the paralytic man to pick up his mat and walk. Who knows what day this was on because if it were the Sabbath it would have been against religious practice to carry your mat, which Jesus showed us in John 5:1-16. So basically Jesus is saying to the crowd, "Not only can I forgive His sins but I can also heal him. BAME! I'll do both!" He gave them the question of, "Which is easier . . ." suggesting one but Jesus does both. I LOVE THIS SCRIPTURE! Jesus does it all. I LOVE IT! The forgiveness, the healing of paralysis and the instruction to pick up his mat was probably just too much and over-the-top for the crowd to digest and reconcile in their mind. Jesus does it all.
This reading causes me to wonder what is it that binds me, cripples me or disables me due to any lack of Faith. And if I believe in You as much as I say that I do, then anything is possible. Absolutely anything!
Through Jesus Christ's Most Precious Blood, Most Sacred Name and Most Holy Face, I thank You for this awareness. Amen~
A reading from the Holy Gospel according to Matthew
1 And getting into a boat He crossed over and came to His own city.
2 And behold, they brought to Him a paralytic, lying on his bed; and when Jesus saw their faith He said to the paralytic, "Take heart, my son; your sins are forgiven."
3 And behold, some of the scribes said to themselves, "This man is blaspheming."
4 But Jesus, knowing their thoughts, said, "Why do you think evil in your hearts?
5 For which is easier, to say, `Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, `Rise and walk'?
6 But that you may know that the Son of man has authority on earth to forgive sins" -- He then said to the paralytic -- "Rise, take up your bed and go home."
7 And he rose and went home.
8 When the crowds saw it, they were afraid, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to men.
The Gospel of the Lord
Praise to You Lord Jesus Christ
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