Simplified Sunday resource to be taught by parents at home during lockdown
Perhaps you know this story well. Where are the crowds blocking the doors? Where is the hole in the roof? Matthew didn’t make a mistake with what he left out. He is drawing his own picture, to highlight what is most important. He wants us to see and hear the shock of the claim – “Son, your sins are forgiven”. Matthew focuses his story-telling lens on the response of the people to the words of Jesus.
V2 – His problem is obvious, everyone can see it, he has to be carried by friends. We all expect Jesus to fix his legs. Jesus tells him to take heart, because his sins are forgiven. We should be left surprised. Firstly, how does this help? Secondly, how can he claim to be able to do that?
V6 – Jesus wants us to know something. Always worth listening! He wants us to know that he has the authority to forgive. This whole exchange is about learning that. And if we get that, we will leave dancing with the man and singing with the crowd. This is Jesus' clearest claim to be God. Here he shows himself to be the one we were told he would be way back in Matthew 1:21 “give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”
This is what he came to do, because this is what each one of us most needs.
Questions to Ponder
What needs fixing most - your body or your soul? Do you share in the worship of the crowd? If not, have you forgotten or minimised your need for forgiveness?