“Your Sins Are Forgiven”
IT MAKES you feel good when you do what is right, doesn’t it?— You know that your father and mother are pleased, and that Jehovah God is too. But no matter how hard we may try, sometimes we do what is wrong, don’t we?— When we do what God says is wrong, this is sin.
The Great Teacher, Jesus Christ, showed that sin does something bad to all of us. He showed this when he did one of his wonderful acts or miracles.
At this time Jesus was staying in a town near the Sea of Galilee. A crowd of people came to see him there. So many people came that there was no more room for others to enter the house. No one else could even get near the door.
But more people kept coming. One group of people brought a man who was very sick. He was paralyzed. It took four men to carry him on a little bed or cot, because he could not walk.
Do you know why they wanted to bring this sick man to Jesus?— They believed that Jesus could heal him from that sickness.
But, with all those people in the house, how could they get the paralyzed man to Jesus?— The men found a way. They climbed up onto the roof. It was a flat roof. And they made a big hole in it. Then they lowered the sick man on his cot right through that hole and into the room below. What faith they had!
All the people in the house were surprised when they saw what was happening. The paralyzed man on his cot was lowered right down into the room. Was Jesus angry because of what the men had done?— Not at all! He was glad to see their faith. He said to the paralyzed man: “Your sins are forgiven.”
Some of the people did not think it was right for Jesus to say that. They did not think that he could forgive sins. So, to show that he really could, Jesus said to the man: “Get up, pick up your cot, and go to your home.”
When Jesus said that, the man was healed! He was not paralyzed anymore. Now he did not need other people to carry him about. He was able to get up all by himself and walk and carry his cot too.
The people who saw this were amazed. Never in all their lives had they seen anything as wonderful as that.—Mark 2:1-12.
What do we learn from this miracle?— We learn that Jesus had the power to forgive sins and to make sick persons well. But we also learn something else. We learn that people get sick because of sin.
Have you ever been sick?— Since we can all get sick, does this mean that we are all sinners?— Yes, the Bible says that we are all born in sin.
Do you know what it means to be born in sin?— It means that we are all born imperfect. We all do things wrong sometimes even though we don’t want to. We got this way because the first man and woman, Adam and Eve, did not obey God. They sinned when they broke God’s law. And we all got sin from Adam.
Do you know how we got our sin from him?— Let me try to explain it in a way that you can understand. Maybe you have made mud pies in a pan. What will happen to the mud pies if you make a dent in the pan? Do you know?— That same mark will show on all the mud pies you make in that pan, won’t it?—
Adam was like that pan, and we are like the mud pies. He became imperfect when he broke God’s law. It was as though he received a dent or a bad mark. So when he had children, what would they be like?— All his children would receive this same mark of imperfection.
Most children are not born with some big imperfection that you can see. They do not have an arm missing, or a hole in their side. But the imperfection they have is big enough so that they become sick and, in time, die.
Of course, some persons get sick more often than others. Why is that? Is it because they are born with more sin?— No. But it may be because they do not have enough food to eat. Or they may eat too much cake and candy. They may stay up too late at night and not get enough sleep. Or they may not put on the right clothing before they go out in the rain or the cold.
Will there ever be a time when we will not get sick? Will we ever get rid of sin?— Well, what did Jesus do for that paralyzed man?— He forgave his sins, and healed him. In this way Jesus showed what he is going to do for all those who try hard to do what is right.
If we show that we do not like sin, that we hate what is wrong, he will heal us. He will take away the sin that we now have. He will do this for us soon by means of the kingdom of God.
Sin will not be taken away all at once. That will be done over a period of time. Then, when our sin is finally gone, we will never get sick again. We will all have perfect health. What a blessing that will be!