Faith and Works


The Faith of the Paralytic

I will refer to the paralytic who had not used his limbs for many years. There he was. The priests, the rulers, and scribes examined his case and pronounced it hopeless. They told him that by his own sin he had brought himself into this condition, and there was no hope for him. But the word was brought to him that there was a man called Jesus who was doing mighty works. He was healing the sick, and He had even raised the dead. “But how can I go to Him?” he said. FW 67.1

“We will carry you to Jesus,” his friends replied, “right into His presence; we have heard He has come to such a place.” FW 67.2

And so they took the hopeless man and bore him to where they knew Jesus was. But the multitude surrounded the building so closely where Jesus was that there was no chance for them, not so much as to come at the door. What were they going to do? The paralytic suggested that they open the roof and take off the tiling and let him down through the roof. FW 67.3

And so he manifested his earnest faith. They did it, and he was brought right before Jesus, where He could look at him. And Jesus as He looked at him, pitied him, and He said, “Son, thy sins be forgiven thee” (Mark 2:5). Well, what a joy that was! Jesus knew just what that sin-sick soul needed. He knew that he had been tortured on account of his own conscience, so He said, “Thy sins be forgiven thee.” What a relief came to his mind! What hope filled his heart! FW 67.4

Then the feelings arose in the hearts of the Pharisees, “Who has this power to forgive sins? It is God alone that has this power.” FW 67.5

Then Jesus said to them, “That ye may know that the Son of man hath power upon earth to forgive sins, (He said unto the sick of the palsy,) I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy couch, and go into thine house” (Luke 5:24). What, take up his bed with his palsied arms! What, get upon his feet with his palsied limbs! What did he do? Why, he just did as he was bidden. He did what the Lord told him to. The power of the will was set to move his palsied limbs and arms, and they responded, when they had not responded for a long time. This manifestation showed before the people that there was One in their midst that could not only forgive sins but that could heal the sick. FW 67.6

But that mighty evidence given to the Pharisees did not convert them. Men can so encase themselves in unbelief, doubt, and infidelity that the raising of the dead would not convict them. Because of their unbelief they would be in the same unbelieving position, unconvicted, unconverted. But all those who have hearts to receive the truth and ears to hear, glorify God. They exclaim, “We have never seen it on this wise before!” FW 68.1