A few days later, when Jesus again entered Capernaum, the people heard that he had come home. They gathered in such large numbers that there was no room left, not even outside the door, and he preached the word to them. Some men came, bringing to him a paralyzed man, carried by four of them. Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus by digging through it and then lowered the mat the man was lying on. (Mark 2:1-4)
Every time I read this passage I wrestle with two questions: First, do I have any sold-out friends like that . . . people who would rip a hole in someone’s roof to get me in front of Jesus? Second, am I a sold-out friend like that to anyone in my life right now? Would I refuse to be denied in bringing my friends before Jesus?
Powerful questions, don’t you think? How would you answer them?
Sold-out saints have a way of making things happen for the good of others and the glory of God. They simply refuse to be denied. Blocked doors do not keep them out. Crowded rooms do not cause them to shy away. And if they cannot bring someone to Jesus by the ordinary way that has been set before them, they simply make a new way! They do not stop until they get before our Lord.
When Luke delivered his account of these events, he wrote: “When they could not find a way to do this because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and lowered him on his mat through the tiles into the middle of the crowd” (Luke 5:19). What great risk these men took to get their paralyzed friend before the Christ! Just the sound of them on the roof would have drawn the attention of those in the home. Then when they started digging and tearing away at the roof tiles, everyone below would be looking up as dust and pieces of the roof began to cascade down into the room below. I would imagine that the owner of the home would have been looking up with indignant anger!
I cannot think of any better phrase than “sold-out saints” to describe the men in this gospel account. They let nothing stand in the way of getting their friend an audience with Jesus. And how did Jesus respond?
When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralyzed man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.” Then Jesus said, “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.” (Mark 2:5, 11)
Their sold-out faith not only brought their friend physical healing, but spiritual healing as well. So the question I want to leave you with today is this: Do you have the kind of sold-out faith that would tear through roof tiles to get someone you know before the Savior of the world? May that be the confession of all our lives as we look for opportunities to bless those God has put into our lives . . . and may we do it for the praise of the glory of His name!
This is the Gospel. This is grace for your race. NEVER FORGET THAT . . . AMEN!