Jesus went back again to Capernaum, where, after a few days, word got round that he was at home. A crowd gathered, so that people couldn’t even get near the door as he was telling them the message.
A party arrived: four people carrying a paralysed man, bringing him to Jesus. They couldn’t get through to him because of the crowd, so they opened up the roof above where he was. When they had dug through it, they used ropes to let down the stretcher the paralysed man was lying on.
Jesus saw their faith, and said to the paralysed man, ‘Child, your sins are forgiven!’
‘How dare the fellow speak like this?’ grumbled some of the legal experts among themselves. ‘It’s blasphemy! Who can forgive sins except God?’
Jesus knew at once, in his spirit, that thoughts like this were in the air. ‘Why do your hearts tell you to think that?’ he asked. ‘Answer me this,’ he went on. ‘Is it easier to say to this cripple, “Your sins are forgiven”, or to say, “Get up, pick up your stretcher, and walk”?
‘You want to know that the son of man has authority on earth to forgive sins?’ He turned to the paralytic. ‘I tell you,’ he said, ‘Get up, take your stretcher, and go home.’ He got up, picked up the stretcher in a flash, and went out before them all.
Everyone was astonished, and they praised God. ‘We’ve never seen anything like this!’ they said.
Mark 2 vv. 1-12.