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Does Jesus have authority to forgive sins?

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Tell the story and set the scene.

The Big Question: Can Jesus Forgive Sins? (v. 20-21)

The Argument: Only God Can Forgive Sins?(v.21)

The Answer: Because Jesus is God, He Can Forgive Sins? (v.21-23)

The Proof: Rise and Walk (vv. 23-24)

You have probably heard the phrase, “The proof is in the pudding.” What exactly does that really mean? Well, the main point is that it is easy to say that you have the power to forgive sins. I could tell you today that God has given me the power to heal people. I could say to you that I can do just about anything. But words are cheap. And, it is very easy to tell you something that you can’t prove to be false or true.
This is the way that psychics work. They are masters of giving you vague information and reading your body language to know if they are hitting on something or not. It’s like a big game of Marco Polo.
Jesus could say that He could forgive sins, and no one could prove otherwise, at least not until the judgment. However, Jesus wanted to prove His claims. The source of our faith is the most critical question we can ask. If we place our faith in the wrong thing, it can be an eternal mistake! It’s like taking a step off the edge of a cliff onto an old wooden bridge and hoping that your foot won’t sink through the wood and cause you to plundge to your death.
Jesus asks the obvious question. What is easier - to say you can forgive sins or to say “rise and walk”? One has the big reveal in eternity, the other in the here and now. Also, one deals with a physical healing, while the other involves the more serious spiritual cleansing.
Jesus turns to the man and heals the man immediately. There could be no denying the miracle. There could be no confusion over what took place. Jesus did what no man could do in healing the man. He did what no man could do in forgiving him of his sins.
There are a couple of questions we need to close with this morning. Just like last week, the first question is do you want to be forgiven? Do you want Jesus to forgive you of your sins? Do you realize that there is an offense to be forgiven of?
tells us that we have all committed high treason against the King of the Universe. We have all sinned and we fall short of the glory of God. That’s a big deal! God says in His word, the soul that sins shall die. God promised Adam and Even that to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil would result in eternal death. That death is a never ending separation from God and eternal torment for our sins in Hell.
Yet, God, who is rich in mercy, when we were still in our trespasses in sins, sent Christ to die for our sins that He might take away our sin and shame and reproach. Christ is the sacrifice and he is also the One that will judge us. He is the One who has authority to forgive.
All you must do is call upon the name of the Lord and you will be saved. You must believe in Jesus and accept His offer of forgiveness through the sacrifice of His death. If you will do that today, you will be saved.
If you are here today and you have received forgiveness for your sins by calling out to Jesus, can I ask you if you would be like this man’s friends? Would you be willing to bring your friends and family and coworkers and neighbors and perfect strangers to Jesus? Will you stop at nothing, allowing no obstacles to prevent you from taking them all the way to Jesus? Don’t stop at the door, don’t stop at the crowds. Will you instead climb on the roof and remove the tiles and tear a hole in the roof to let down your friends and family and coworkers and stranger right in front of Jesus?
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