Sunday 17 November 2013

Mark 2:1-17 - Forgiveness

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Here in Mark 2:1-17, we see Jesus forgiving, healing, calling and eating. None of this is accidental, everything he did was based on what he saw the Father do, and everything he said was based on what he heard the Father say. So we should pay close attention to the things he did and the things he said.

So let's do a little noticing in this passage.

Notice that when the paralysed man was let down from the roof, Jesus saw their (plural) faith. It may not be my faith by which I come to forgiveness, sometimes it may be the faith of those who bring me into his presence. Had you seen that before? I hadn't!

Notice also that Jesus treats forgiveness and healing as equivalent. Our healing is our forgiveness. And those we forgive are also healed in a sense, set free to stand up and walk, healed of the paralysis of our unforgiveness. Have you ever noticed the lightness of heart and the peace of mind that passes over a person's face in the moment that they know you are no longer angry or disappointed towards them?

And notice how easily Levi was called; Jesus used just two simple words, 'Follow me'. There's a whole relationship in those words. The first word tells Levi what to do, the second tells him who to focus the action upon. It's the same call we all receive from Jesus. 'Follow me.'

And notice finally that Jesus is willing to interact socially with those the world regards as disreputable. He wants to get to know them and he wants them to get to know him too.

Now let's do as Jesus did. Let's go out today and forgive somebody, heal somebody, call somebody to follow Jesus in some way [Tweet it!], and let's socialise with people who might be regarded as the dregs of society. Quite some challenge for you and me I suspect. But these are some of the first things Jesus did when he began his work.

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