Luke 5:17-26 (NKJV)
17 Now it happened on a certain day, as He was teaching, that there were Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting by, who had come out of every town of Galilee, Judea, and Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was present [a]to heal them. 18 Then behold, men brought on a bed a man who was paralyzed, whom they sought to bring in and lay before Him. 19 And when they could not find how they might bring him in, because of the crowd, they went up on the housetop and let him down with his bed through the tiling into the midst before Jesus.
20 When He saw their faith, He said to him, “Man, your sins are forgiven you.”
21 And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, “Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?”
22 But when Jesus perceived their thoughts, He answered and said to them, “Why are you reasoning in your hearts? 23 Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Rise up and walk’? 24 But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins”—He said to the man who was paralyzed, “I say to you, arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.”
25 Immediately he rose up before them, took up what he had been lying on, and departed to his own house, glorifying God. 26 And they were all amazed, and they glorified God and were filled with fear, saying, “We have seen strange things today!”
In this passage, we read in verse 24 that Jesus gave the paralytic specific instructions…Arise, Take up your Bed, and Go to your house. In verse 25, we read about the immediate obedience of the healed paralytic…he rose up, took up his bed, and departed for home.
Maybe some of you have had an injury in the past. Due to your injuries maybe you received a walker, wheelchair, scooter, crutches, cast, boot, a brace, or a sling, and as you dig through your basement you come across these items that you’ve kept for some reason and it reminds you of that experience in your life. An experience that maybe you wish you could have completely forgotten about. But look at you now. All healed. No restrictions to a wheelchair, walker, cast, sling, etc. Praise the Lord, right? So why keep all of these reminders in our homes or in our memory banks? Reminders of such trying times in our lives. Consider the passage above, if you were the paralytic man who had been attached to that bed for years, wouldn’t you think he would have despised that bed so much that he would love to leave it behind to never think on it or sleep on it ever again? Oh, just to toss it in the nearest dumpster, finally! Yet, Jesus specifically tells him to take this old bed with him. Seriously, why? Take it as a reminder of where you used to be and where you are today. Take it as a testimony to those you encounter to use as part of your story, so they can come to a point of glorifying Him too after seeing the evidences of how He’s completely changed your life. Gentlemen, this is the gospel we read about in 1 Corinthians 15:1-4…the death, burial, and resurrection. Remembering where God brought you from, how it’s been put to death, and where He brought you to. Let me encourage you to “take up what you had been lying on”...take up your past, show it to others, and use it as your testimony to a lost and dying world…Publicly sharing that “this is what once defined me, but no longer, why? Because of what Jesus did in and through me.”
And my prayer is that those you share your salvation story with will desire to come to know Christ as well and glorify Him the rest of their lives. All because of your story. All because you obediently took up your bed and did what He asked you to do. You got this!
Practicing His Presence,
Nate Smith is a college baseball and football coach, a husband, a father of 6 girls, grandpa to 3 granddaughters, a police chaplain, a pastor, and has a passion to see men grow in Christ.
#girldad including granddaughter