In today’s reading, a man is lowered to Jesus by his friends through roof. This man is paralyzed and his friends believe Jesus can heal him. Jesus forgives the man’s sins. This action horrifies the scribes and Pharisees because they realize only God has the power to forgive sins. Jesus, in an attempt to win over their hearts and show them who He is, then resorts to giving the paralyzed man his movement back.
Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Rise and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”–He said to the one who was paralyzed, “I say to you, rise, pick up your stretcher, and go home.”
We live through many tragedies. Ultimately we all eventually suffer the worst tragedy of all- death. Here though, when placed next to the Way, the Truth, and the Life, tragedy is seen with total clarity. When given a chance to heal the man, Jesus gives him the greatest healing possible – forgiveness of sins. Jesus teaches us what is most important by doing this first. Only as a last ditch effort to convince the hard hearted of His divinity did he give the paralyzed man the ability to walk.
It can be tempting to think that Jesus is far away from us when tragedy strikes. We need to remember that he doesn’t always stop tragedy from happening, but He is always with us. Even when everything seems to be falling apart, Jesus will forgive us of our sins. This is the most important thing.
— Dr. Greg Bottaro, Well Catholic