“Some men brought to him a paralyzed man, lying on a mat. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the man, ‘Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven’” (Matthew 9:2 NIV).
If you’ve accepted God’s gift of salvation by grace, you’ve received the best gift ever offered to anyone. But have you shared that gift with others since you became a Christian?Faithful people share their faith. Today’s verse comes from the story in Matthew 9 about a man who was sick and paralyzed. His friends wanted him to be healed, so they brought him to Jesus by lowering him on his mat through an opening in the roof of a house where Jesus was.
Notice Matthew 9:2 says, “When Jesus saw their faith.” It was not the paralyzed man’s faith that led to the healing—it was the faith of his friends. When Jesus saw that these friends cared enough to bring their paralyzed friend, he said, “Those guys have great faith. They’re not just asking; they expect me to heal their friend,” and he did.
You have friends who are spiritually paralyzed and can’t get to Jesus. They are paralyzed by fear, guilt, doubt, pain, or maybe even resentment over being hurt in some church in the past. They are paralyzed, and they can’t get to Jesus on their own.
God is watching to see if you will be faithful enough to bring them. And if you are, God will honor your faith. He’ll not only heal your friend; he’s also going to bless you. It’s a blessing of faith.
As long as a church will keep reaching out to more unbelievers, God will keep blessing it. The moment a church’s members say their church doesn’t need to grow anymore, they’re saying they don’t care about the world—an attitude that’s inconsistent with God’s priorities.
But as long as we keep bringing spiritually paralyzed people to Jesus, God will bless our churches and our lives.
Don’t you want to be a part of that?
(By Pastor Rick Warren. http://pastorrick.com)
For further readings, follow our daily bible reading plan with us. Today's reading: Mark 14