Today’s Gospel from the Mass (Mark 2:1-12) offers a demonstration of the absolutely awe-inspiring way that Jesus deals with the evil/misguided enemies who seek to discredit Him:
And when he returned to Caper’na-um after some days, it was reported that he was at home.  And many were gathered together, so that there was no longer room for them, not even about the door; and he was preaching the word to them.  And they came, bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men.  And when they could not get near him because of the crowd, they removed the roof above him; and when they had made an opening, they let down the pallet on which the paralytic lay.  And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “My son, your sins are forgiven.”  Now some of the scribes were sitting there, questioning in their hearts,  “Why does this man speak thus? It is blasphemy! Who can forgive sins but God alone?”  And immediately Jesus, perceiving in his spirit that they thus questioned within themselves, said to them, “Why do you question thus in your hearts?  Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, `Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, `Rise, take up your pallet and walk’?  But that you may know that the Son of man has authority on earth to forgive sins” — he said to the paralytic —  “I say to you, rise, take up your pallet and go home.”  And he rose, and immediately took up the pallet and went out before them all; so that they were all amazed and glorified God, saying, “We never saw anything like this!”
To understand a little more of this incredible show down with the religious enemies of Jesus, consider:
- The scribes had front row seats, despite the fact that there were great crowds. One wonders if Jesus allowed the scribes to be close so that they could get a great view of what was to unfold.
- When Jesus says, “My son, your sins are forgiven” the scribes question in their hearts (they didn’t say it out loud!), “Who can forgive Sins but God alone?”; they even consider it blasphemy which was a capital crime in Israel at that time (Lev 24:16). Of course, the scribes don’t realize that God is standing right before them.
- Jesus knows their thoughts immediately. Who can read the unspoken thoughts in the hearts and minds of men? Only Jesus. Side note: If people’s inner thoughts were completely obvious to Jesus then, how much more so are our thoughts known to the Risen and Glorified Christ?
- Jesus in essence says, “You think forgiving sins is a big deal, just watch this!” Jesus then has the man who is paralyzed stand up and walk! Here Jesus offers a visual demonstration of the forgiveness and healing that has already taken place in the man’s soul!
- In doing this, Jesus not only claims to be God, but demonstrates that He is God!
The scribes foolishly challenge Jesus, underestimating to Who they are talking. We should all seek to never underestimate the love and power of our Lord Jesus Christ.