Scripture: Mark 2: 1-19; Hebrews 11: 1-10; 1 John 1:1-2:6
In this chapter McLaren walks us into Mark’s story of the paralytic being lowered on his mat through the roof by his friends to be brought to Jesus for healing. He does this as if we are one of the ones at the house that day.
This is the only story where Jesus is said to have seen the “friends’ faith” and therefore healed the paralytic, after forgiving his sins. This is one of those remarkable stories too -- for here Jesus underlines his authority, God-like authority, to forgive sins. Indeed in this passage the religious leaders are flummoxed by Jesus’ words saying that very thing, “Who but God has authority to forgive sins?” The answer: Jesus. And the greater answer: the church -- you and me.
And all that authority begins with faith -- trust placed in Jesus. The story McLaren tells here has this line, “With Jesus, faith is where it all begins. When you believe, you make it real.” She continued, “‘You change this,’ -- she points to her head--’and this’-- she points to her heart-- ‘and you change all this.’ She gestures to indicate the whole world.”
Faith is where we “make it real,” for certain. How do you respond to that idea? How have you believed in Jesus in such a way or through some situation that it made “it real,” made “Jesus real” for you? Would you like to share? Email firstname.lastname@example.org and tell us your story.
Read the whole of Hebrews 11 this week, such a great chapter, the faith “hall of fame,” but actually, those are not the only names told therein, but every believer who has believed and run the race is there as well, yet untold.