“Encountering Jesus – Snapshots of the Savior”

  • Tuesday, August 16, 2011

  • Dustin Rogers
    Luke 5:17-26 – A Hopeless Man’s Encounter

    And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. [John 1:14]

    This well known account of an amazing miracle by Jesus is usually remembered as that, one miracle in which Jesus heals a paralyzed man. But in this account, there are three miracles that confront three groups of people, with each encounter providing us wonder and amazement in this Man who was and is God only Son!

    Pastor Dustin Rogers taught from the fifth chapter of Luke and describes “3 Groups – 3 Miracles”… But first, the passage…

    One day as he was teaching, Pharisees and teachers of the law, who had come from every village of Galilee and from Judea and Jerusalem, were sitting there. And the power of the Lord was present for him to heal the sick. Some men came carrying a paralytic on a mat and tried to take him into the house to lay him before Jesus. When they could not find a way to do this because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and lowered him on his mat through the tiles into the middle of the crowd, right in front of Jesus.

    When Jesus saw their faith, he said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.”

    The Pharisees and the teachers of the law began thinking to themselves, “Who is this fellow who speaks blasphemy? Who can forgive sins but God alone?”

    Jesus knew what they were thinking and asked, “Why are you thinking these things in your hearts? Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins. . . .” He said to the paralyzed man, “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.” Immediately he stood up in front of them, took what he had been lying on and went home praising God. Everyone was amazed and gave praise to God. They were filled with awe and said, “We have seen remarkable things today.”  [Luke 5:17-26]

    The first group we encounter is the paralyzed man and his friends who are doing everything it takes to get their friend to Jesus… even to the point of cutting a hole in a roof! They display a ‘reckless faith’ in which they place their only hope in Jesus. Their incredible faith is seen by Jesus and is then followed by the “first” miracle… Jesus makes the statement… Friend, your sins are forgiven…

    The wonder and miracle of the gospel! God is in human form, and calls a sinner ‘friend’… and then forgives his sin! If you missed this statement as a miracle, don’t worry, so did the Pharisees!

    The second group of people is the “Righteous Experts” – the Pharisees & teachers who seek to discredit Jesus in a way that maintained their ‘status’ as the religious elite. They grumble and think to themselves that they have just heard blasphemy… And the second miracle occurs… Jesus reads their thoughts! Jesus knows our heart and our mind!

    To ‘prove’ His power, Jesus performs the healing miracle we associate with this narrative and does so in the presence of the third group… the witnesses, the ‘everyone’… Jesus tells the man to get up and immediately the man is healed and begins praising God. “Everyone was amazed”…

    Pastor Dustin’s hope is that we are amazed (or perhaps ‘re-amazed’) at the power and grace and work of our Savior! The Pharisees, who should have known, fell victim to pride, the “Number One enemy to our soul…” The friends of the stricken man demonstrated a passion and conviction of faith that the “Number One need for our life is Jesus’ righteousness…”.
    May we join with the witnesses in this story and be seized with amazement and give the praise to God! We have “read” remarkable things today!


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