Luke 5. Forum Discussion

Somebody once said that the 4 most encouraging words you can say to somebody are, “I believe in you.”

Chapter 5 contains a beautiful interaction between Jesus and Simon. Jesus had used Simon’s boat to teach the crowd that had gathered along the shoreline. Simon and the others had been fishing all night but had caught nothing. Jesus asks Simon to go out into deeper water and lower his nets for a catch. Simon’s reaction is very important. His first reaction was to tell Jesus that they had been trying all night and caught nothing. More importantly, his second thought was to do just as Jesus said. Simon went out and lowered his nets as Jesus requested and filled two boats with fish to the point where the boats began to sink.

What Simon witnessed must have been overwhelming. Simon’s reaction is understandable. He did not feel worthy to be with Jesus and said to Him in verse 8, “Go away from me Lord, for I am a sinful man.” Reading this makes me feel how vulnerable Simon was at that moment.

How did Jesus respond? He responded with encouragement and an invitation to Simon - “Do not fear, from now on you will be catching men.” – Luke 5:10. To me, this may well have been a “make or break” moment for Simon. After the miracle of the fish, Simon realized that Jesus was The Christ. And his first reaction was to get swallowed up by his own sins and push Jesus away. I believe that Jesus knew Simon’s heart. Although Simon may not have thought he was going to catch any fish, he obeyed Jesus and followed His request to drop their fishing nets. Jesus responded by choosing Simon to follow Him and become one of His disciples.

Through His invitation, Jesus conveyed to Simon that He believed in Him. And that encouragement was enough for Simon to realize his full potential.

Maybe there are people in our lives that need somebody to believe in them in order to reach their potential. As always, we can follow the perfect example of Jesus by including them and encouraging them.

Later in Chapter 5, Jesus heals a man with leprosy. This would be a good time to point out a pattern that you can look for in the Gospels.

  • Jesus performs miracles.
  • People hear about the miracles and large crowds begin to follow Him.
  • Jesus uses the opportunity to teach the crowds.

Verses 17-26 are Luke’s account of the paralytic man being lowered through the roof so Jesus could heal him. This is the same story found in Mark 2 and Mathew 9. Let’s end today’s study by revisiting our notes from Mark 2:

Mark 2. BLOG PAGE

The second chapter of Mark begins with another miracle performed by Jesus. Jesus is speaking the word to a large crowd that has gathered together in His home. It got so crowded that there was no way to enter through the door. A paralytic man was one of the people that came to see Jesus. He was carried by 4 men. This is an awesome story of hope and faith. Mark tells us that, “Being unable to get to Him because of the crowd, they removed the roof above Him; and when they had dug an opening, they let down the pallet on which the paralytic was lying.”

Try to put yourself in the position of this paralyzed man. He can’t walk but he has hope that Jesus can heal him. When he gets to the house, the crowd is so big that he can’t get in. For some, that would be the end of the story. But this man had did not quit and always believed in Jesus, as did the people carrying him. They refused to give up. Instead, they removed the roof above Him; and when they had dug an opening, they let down the pallet on which the paralytic was lying.

The experience of being paralyzed and taken through the area and lowered through a hole in the roof would scare a lot of us. But that’s not the feeling we get when we study this true story.   T ry to visualize the scene that was taking place, and see the man with a big smile on his face as he is lowered down through the roof to see Jesus, believing that he is going to be healed. And Jesus who knew the man’s heart said to him, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”

The scribes hear Jesus saying this and take issue with Jesus saying that He has forgiven the paralytic man’s sins. Jesus sensing the scribes’ concern responds, “Why are you reasoning about these things in your hearts?  Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, ‘Your sins are forgiven’; or to say, ‘Get up, and pick up your pallet and walk’?  But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—He said to the paralytic, “I say to you, get up, pick up your pallet and go home.” And he got up and immediately picked up the pallet and went out in the sight of everyone, so that they were all amazed and were glorifying God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this.”

This is such a great story of hope and faith directed in the best possible way towards Jesus. His faith in Jesus made him whole. Jesus said to the paralytic, “I say to you, get up, pick up your pallet and go home.” And he got up and immediately picked up the pallet and went out in the sight of everyone, so that they were all amazed and were glorifying God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this.”

So, what does this scripture mean to us, and how can we apply it in our own lives?   The scripture says to  not allow anything to block us when we have something going on in our lives that only Jesus can make better.   We  need to show perseverance in coming to Jesus, even if the first attempt gets blocked like it did for the paralytic man that could not get through the door. If our faith is strong enough, we can always find a second option to come to Jesus with our needs. Just like the paralytic man, we may need 4 people to help us get there, and we may have to take a non-traditional route, but if we keep believing and keep heading towards Jesus, we will find Him.

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