Saving Faith

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"“When Jesus returned to Capernaum several days later, the news spread quickly that he was back home. Soon the house where he was staying was so packed with visitors that there was no more room, even outside the door. While he was preaching God’s word to them, four men arrived carrying a paralyzed man on a mat. They couldn’t bring him to Jesus because of the crowd, so they dug a hole through the roof above his head. Then they lowered the man on his mat, right down in front of Jesus. Seeing their faith, Jesus said to the paralyzed man, ‘My child, your sins are forgiven.’ But some of the teachers of religious law who were sitting there thought to themselves, ‘What is he saying? This is blasphemy! Only God can forgive sins!’ Jesus knew immediately what they were thinking, so he asked them, ‘Why do you question this in your hearts? Is it easier to say to the paralyzed man “Your sins are forgiven,” or “Stand up, pick up your mat, and walk”? So I will prove to you that the Son of Man has the authority on earth to forgive sins.’ Then Jesus turned to the paralyzed man and said, ‘Stand up, pick up your mat, and go home!’ And the man jumped up, grabbed his mat, and walked out through the stunned onlookers. They were all amazed and praised God, exclaiming, ‘We’ve never seen anything like this before!’" - Mark 2:1-12

"For you are all children[m] of God through faith in Christ Jesus. And all who have been united with Christ in baptism have put on Christ, like putting on new clothes." – Galatians 3:26-27

The room was packed full of people. The crowd was spilling out the door. But that didn't stop these men. They found the staircase that led to the roof, cut a hole through the thick clay, and lowered their friend right in front of Jesus. Impressed by their faith, Jesus, responded by forgiving the man's sins. This, of course, caused quite a stir among the Jewish teachers who accused Jesus of blasphemy. They thought, "Who can forgive sins but God alone?" (Mark 2:7)

Jesus used the opportunity to drive home a spiritual point. "Which is easier: to say to this paralyzed man, 'Your sins are forgiven' or to say, 'Get up, take your mat and walk'? But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins." So he said to the man, "I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home." He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. (Mark 2:9-12)

Practical faith is demonstrated by our actions. Certainly, the paralytic and his friends demonstrated practical faith. Every believer demonstrates this same kind of faith when we depend on Jesus to provide all we need to do, all He has called us to do. But it is important to understand that practical faith follows saving faith. Saving faith is trusting in Jesus as the only One who can forgive our sins and place us into an eternal relationship with the living God. Jesus healed the man's heart; then He healed his body. First saving faith, then practical faith.

Prayer: 
Loving God, thank You for working from the inside out. Thank You for taking care of our greatest need, our eternal need, before dealing with the temporal needs in our lives. Amen
Date: 
Oct 12 2017