How Do I Help My Friend Experience the Miracle of Jesus?

As we continue our God of Miracles series, we will look at a miracle that took place at the beginning of Mark 2. I want to make three simple observations. The first thing we see is:

 Great Friends

The story begins, “A few days later, when Jesus again entered Capernaum, the people heard that he had come home. They gathered in such large numbers that there was no room left, not even outside the door, and he preached the word to them. Some men came, bringing to him a paralyzed man, carried by four of them. Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus by digging through it and then lowered the mat the man was lying on” (Mk. 2:1-4). Praise God this man had these four friends! Despite potentially having different opinions about politics, cars, sports teams, and hobbies, they were unified with a single purpose…to bring this man to Jesus. We have to keep the main thing the main thing. What’s the main thing? Bringing people to Jesus. We are here for those who are not yet here! The greatest joy in life is bringing someone to Jesus. Jesus said, “You shall be witnesses!” (Acts 1:8). The problem with the church is the attitude, “We pay our staff to do that.” Christians have institutionalized ministry, and we need to personalize ministry. Every church member is a minister. Do you think a Senior Pastor or Campus Pastor can get the gospel to all the people in your city? We are not told the names of the four friends. But they did not want their name known. They wanted His name known! It is not about my name, your name, or even the name of the church. It is about the name above every name. There is salvation in no other name but Jesus! The only reason you are here today is because someone brought you to Jesus. Thank God for friends like these four. Thank God for the people who helped to bring you to Jesus. Who are you bringing to Jesus?

 Great Faith

“When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralyzed man, ‘Son, your sins are forgiven’” (Mk. 2:5). Here are some key verses about faith:

  • “Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God.” – Romans 10:17
  • “Without faith it is impossible to please God.” – Hebrews 11:6
  • “Whatever is not of faith is sin.” – Romans 14:23

We have to believe people will come if we invite them, and that Jesus will save if they ask Him! The friends could not heal the man, but they knew who could. There will always be obstacles and hindrances if you are trying to bring people to Jesus. When the people would not welcome the paralyzed man, and actually hindered him, the four friends did something that had never been done before. They ripped off the roof! They would not quit or give up. Notice the words “their faith.” Jesus healed this man not because of his faith but because of their faith! Think about carrying a paralyzed man, deadweight, on a stretcher no telling how far. It was dangerous and dramatic! Then think of carrying him up on the roof! They could have fallen. They could have dropped him. Failure is temporary but quitting is permanent!

Great Forgiveness

The story continues, “Now some teachers of the law were sitting there, thinking to themselves, ‘Why does this fellow talk like that? He’s blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone?’” (v. 6-7). Their theology was correct. Only God can forgive sin. Their problem is they would not receive Jesus for who He is. Jesus is God. He proved to them His deity! He asked them, “Which is easier: to say to this paralyzed man, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up, take your mat and walk’?” (v. 8). It is easier to say, “Your sins are forgiven.” No one could prove if they were or not. The healing of the man’s body was to demonstrate the healing of his soul. Technically, it was HARDER for Jesus to say, “Thy sins are forgiven.” He had to endure the cross. It took his blood. It was easier for Jesus to say, “Arise and walk” because He only had to speak the word. Salvation took his life. Jesus raised this man off his mat to prove his sins were forgiven. God raised Jesus from the dead to prove our sins are forgiven. Forgiveness is the greatest miracle. It is our greatest need. It cost the greatest price. It brings the greatest blessing! Though the people could not see the forgiveness in the man’s heart, they could see the change in the way he walked! People can’t see your heart, but they can see the change in your life. Who are you willing to pray for? Who will you invite? Who is going to be in heaven because of you?

Works Consulted:

Be Diligent by Wiersbe

Exploring the Gospels by Vines

Christ Centered Exposition

Truth for Life.Org

Clifton, M. (2016). Reclaiming Glory: Revitalizing Dying Churches: Creating a Gospel Legacy throughout North America B&H Books.

Next Post
What Does the Cross of Jesus Mean to Us?
Previous Post
What do I do when I’m facing a storm?

Join us This Weekend

Sermon Series