by Eric Reeder
Founder and leader of RISEmovement
Jesus was Emmanuel, God walking around with us. He was right in the midst of broken, sick, sinful, deceived people hanging with them without issue. He was in the midst of darkness displaying light at all times. He didn’t push people away, He came to them and then called them to come to Him. He never told people to come to Him without having had moved toward them first. He is not removed in the presence of sin, or sickness, or brokenness. He is close and available and changes the situation.
While Jesus was telling people about Father, there came an amazing opportunity to show people what Father is like. A paralyzed man is lowered down in front of Him. Jesus moves out of teaching and into showing. He wasn’t going to just talk about Father. He was going to display Father. That is an important aspect that we all need to live. We need to show people what Father is like.
Jesus makes one of that craziest statements as He steps forward to take care of this gentleman. Jesus goes straight for the jugular. He goes to the “elephant-in-the-room”. He doesn’t even talk of the disease. He goes to the heart of the matter. He shows us what Father is like. Jesus says, “Son, your sins are forgiven.” What?!
Jesus makes this statement of truth and it rocks their world and rocks ours. Jesus doesn’t announce his forgiveness as if it was never there before. Jesus proclaims what has always been. Father walked in forgiveness toward that guy. He walks in forgiveness toward us. Jesus hadn’t died on the cross at this point. So we have to conclude that the cross didn’t create or provide forgiveness. The cross was the display of forgiveness that was already in play from the goodness of Father. How else could Jesus state that this guy was forgiven if forgiveness was dependent on the cross? This guy didn’t even confess his sin. Jesus just displayed that Father had already forgiven him so now go free and embrace the healing available to you from Father’s goodness.
It’s basically impossible to feel worthy of a healing if you don’t realize your value through Father’s love that has always had forgiveness toward you. That is why Jesus went straight to that point. He wanted this guy to experience Father’s goodness and awaken to his value so we would no longer be paralyzed. When hearts awaken to the depth of Father’s love and value for us it heals what has us paralyzed. Our hearts, our minds, and even our physical body respond to the “all-liberating” truth of Father’s love. Our paralyzed state is remedied and we pick up our mats and live like we never have before.
Eric Reeder is joined by other leaders of RISEmovement to reveal the heartbeat of The HOPE-filled Gospel.