Yeshua heals the paralytic
by haRold Smith
from Jerusalem, Israel

"One day as he was teaching, Pharisees and teachers of the law, who had come from every village of Galilee and from Judea and Jerusalem, were sitting there. And the power of the Lord was present for him to heal the sick. Some men came carrying a paralytic on a mat and tried to take him into the house to lay him before Jesus. 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, right in front of Jesus. When Jesus saw their faith, he said, 'Friend, your sins are forgiven.' The Pharisees and the teachers of the law began thinking to themselves, 'Who is this fellow who speaks blasphemy? Who can forgive sins but God alone?' Jesus knew what they were thinking and asked, 'Why are you thinking these things in your hearts? Which is easier: to say, 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, 'Get up and walk'? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins....' He said to the paralyzed man, 'I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.' Immediately he stood up in front of them, took what he had been lying on and went home praising God. When the crowd saw this, they were filled with awe; and they praised God who had given such authority to men." (Luke 5:17-25, Matthew 9:8)

"Then, the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled, for fear of the Jews, Yeshua came and stood in the midst, saying, 'Peace be with you.' When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. So Jesus said to them again, 'Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.' And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, 'Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained'." (John 20:19-23)

It is becoming increasingly important during these days of turmoil to recognize that we are in the time of times spoken of in scripture. A multitude of believers across this globe are raising 'flags of warning' about a particular happening or the actions of a particular individual of importance and calling for urgent prayer focus in an attempt to deter the inevitable, catastrophic events we see occurring all around us. Folks, this is the shaking of which has been foretold. It is not going to make any difference who is elected President of the United States or head of any nation - this shaking is only going to escalate. The die has been cast, the renting has begun and no government edict or collaborative body of wisdom or prayer from the fearful of heart is going to stop this tsunami - I pray you are not holding onto anything but Him for everything that can be shaken will be.

We must take care that in our desire to live in an environment of tranquil calm, comfort and stability, we don't find our prayer, and ultimately ourselves, in opposition to God's Plans and Purposes for this hour. Our kingdom is not of this world. If it were, the Lord would have instructed us to fight for it (John 18:36 - click highlighted verses to view). Our paramount effort and prayer in these days should be directed toward the fulfillment of what is written in the last passage on the last page of the Book (Revelation 22:20-21) with the understanding that there WILL be turmoil associated with it and that the light we find within ourselves be not darkness (Luke 11:34-36).

Most of us have a tendency to either live in the past or live in the future. We live in the past by not letting go of the hurts, wounds and grievances given to us by the words or deeds of others, often by those closest to us, and we base our actions toward them motivated by what HAS transpired between us. We live in the future by assessing events we see happening around us and base the motivation of our present actions by what we perceive WILL HAPPEN. Many believers today are looking at current events and measuring them to determine how close we are to His Coming. While we are to be aware of the times and seasons in which we live (Mark 13:28), scripture is very clear that no one really knows how or just when it will all transpire. Many think they do but, at best, it's just a guess based on speculation.

Scripture Everything written in scripture will come to pass exactly as it is written. But guess what? When He came the first time He fulfilled everything exactly that was written about Him - but, no one recognized it until AFTER it had happened because they had already made up their minds as to HOW He was going to bring it all about. In that regard, His Second Coming will be much the same as His first - it will be veiled. Those who missed His First Coming did so because they were looking for an EVENT instead of a Person. If we are looking for an event, we will miss Him because He is coming again as a Person - in His Body.

The events being played out before us today are not the result of 'God's Wrath of Judgment'. God is not sitting somewhere above the clouds with His 'wacky stick' waiting to smack us for wrong doing - whether it be us as individuals or as leaders of nations. Yeshua said He did NOT come to judge the world. He went on to say that there IS a judgment that has come into the world, that Light has come and men loved darkness more than they loved to bring their deeds into the Light to see if they are wrought in God - or not. (John 3:17-21), The climactic events we are observing are the result of the convergence of two distinct entities - Light and Darkness, based upon the principle of what has been sown shall be reaped (Matthew 13:38-39 - notice that the reapers are not men, but angels),

ENTITY - 1) a/ BEING or EXISTENCE; especially: independent, separate, or self-contained existence b/ the existence of a thing as contrasted with its attributes 2) something that has separate and distinct existence and objective or conceptual reality.

God IS Light (1John 1:5), He is an Entity that exists as Light - a Force exerted in this earthly realm. As we embrace the attributes of Light, the Nature and Characteristics of His Life - we become Light, we become that Force. The Nature and Characteristic of what is at the core of His Life is self-denial in favor of Love (Philippians 2:5-7, 1John 3:16), If we embrace His Life, we then carry the existence of that Light within us. We become a vessel through whom that entity of Light is spread abroad in this earthly realm. Light and darkness are opposing forces similar to the opposing ends of a magnet. They cannot occupy the same space at the same time - it is a naturally occurring physical impossibility.

Sin is an entity that exists as darkness. Sin is anything that separates us from the Light. I deliberately did not say 'satan'. Satan is merely a vessel that has embraced darkness and is the prominent example of how darkness emerges. The attribute that is at the core of darkness is self exaltation (Isaiah 14:12-14). If we embrace self through any manner of expression, whether is be self-preservation, self-righteousness, self-aggrandizement, what is our 'right', etc., we become darkness.

At the point where the entities of Light and Darkness converge, there will be turmoil - whether that convergence be an internal one or external. There is one distinct difference that separates these entities - Light overwhelms darkness. Darkness has not, will not, nor will it ever overcome Light (John 1:5). Light overwhelms darkness for no other reason than by the attributes of its existence. When you walk into a darkened room and turn on a light, is there a struggle for that light to exist? No. Light CAUSES darkness, not to flee, but to dissipate. The definition of darkness is "the absence of light" - Light actually CAUSES darkness to become Light. In like manner, when we wholly embrace His Life, we BECOME Light (1John 4:16-18).

As He is, so are we in this world. In Matthew 13:34, scripture says that Yeshua spoke ONLY in parables to the multitude. I used to think it to be mean of God to speak to people only in parables so that "hearing, they would not hear". After all, if you have the Truth why would you withhold it and not want everyone to hear it? Until, one day, He showed me from verse 12 that knowledge of the Truth brings with it the responsibility to live that Truth. If a person is not ready to embrace Life in the Truth they hear, they cause judgment to fall on them and the last state of that person would be worse than if left in the state of ignorance they are presently in (Matthew 13:12-13). Our Lord was actually showing His Love toward them by not causing them to come into a place of judgment before they were ready to accept responsibility for what they heard.

For those of us who DO hear, however, we are placed in a position of accountability. We want so much to have the Breath of Life without fully understanding what responsibility that breath, that Life, places upon us - to be sent as He has been sent. To become Light is to become responsible for the sin of others before the Father. There are only two places in scripture where it says the Lord breathed on anyone - this verse above in John and on Adam in Genesis 2:7. Isn't that interesting? The Breath of Life imparted by the Spirit of God. With that Breath comes the responsibility to live His Life - sent as the Father sent Him. Adam was sent of the Father and gave away that Life through his lack of responsibility, his pre-occupation with his self. Yeshua reclaimed that Life through His denial of self and imparted it into us through the Holy Spirit.

In the scripture above from John 20, this is recorded as the short space of time between His Resurrection and when He was to be presented to the Father as the atonement for all of our sin. Just prior to this, Mary, mistaking Him for a gardener, reached to touch Him and He would not let her because He had not yet been before the Father. The only words given to us that He speaks to the disciples during this time of brevity are in this one instance of scripture. He could have said anything, so what He DID speak to them is to be regarded as of the utmost importance - if ever the boys were listening, you know it had to be in this room with Him for the first time since watching Him die on the cross (remember, before this moment, it had not yet been revealed to them that He was to be resurrected - Luke 24:10-12).

And what did He say? "If you forgive the sins of any, they will be forgiven - but if you retain the sins of any, they will be retained." Not, "your Father in heaven will," but YOU will. Who has the authority to forgive sin? Yeshua. Who did He give that authority to? Us. Who, also, has been given the authority to retain sin? Us. Who, then, will those sins be retained by? Us. What does it mean to retain someone's sin? To retain means 'to keep'. YOU keep them. When do you keep them? You keep them when you get up in the morning, when you sit down for a meal, when you go to work, and when you go to bed - you 'keep' them, you 'retain' them. How do you keep them? You keep them by not forgiving the person responsible for committing them. Where do you retain them? They are retained in your heart. You become motivated by them. Scripture says that if we don't forgive them, eventually we will end up committing the very sin we refuse to forgive (Romans 2:1).

If Yeshua's Life in the flesh is presented as the example for us to emulate, how, then, was He accountable for the Breath of Life in Him? The answer is - He TOOK our sins upon Himself, BORE them in His Own Body, became RESPONSIBLE for them before the Father and by whose stripes we are healed (1Peter 2:24, Isaiah 53:5-12), Now, (at the expense of redundancy) I ask you - WHERE were those stripes laid? They were laid on His BODY. When we embrace His Life, when the Holy Spirit is BREATHED into us by Yeshua as on the Day of Pentecost, we become part of His Body - do we not? So, then, WHERE are those stripes laid? They are laid on US - His Body. If we, His Body, are sent as He was sent by the Father, then the RESPONSIBILITY for the sins committed toward us is also given to us. What does that mean? It means we become responsible for the healing that can take place within the person committing the sin aimed toward us by bearing that sin. It means that if we embrace the stripes laid upon us as He did, without guile or malice or return in word or deed, and exercise the authority imparted to us by forgiving those sins from whose hands they originate, then a supernatural event occurs - the Kingdom of Heaven within us (Luke 17:20-21) is extended into this earthly realm and the Healing Power of the Lord is loosed upon that person to give them the opportunity to be made whole. The Power of Light emanating from us overwhelms the darkness manifested from within that person.

Forgive us AS (in like manner) we forgive others Matthew 6:12-15 says that if we refuse to forgive the sin of another, scripture says that God will not forgive us. Understand, it does not say that He CAN'T forgive us, it says that He WON'T. Such weight did He put upon forgiveness that He took it even a step further to say that if we come before the Lord and remember someone who has something against us, regardless of whether WE have done anything to deserve it or not, to leave our gift at the altar and go make it right with the person first (Matthew 5:22-24). Simply laying it aside or shrugging it off is not forgiving. For that gift of healing to move through us we have to become pro-active on behalf of that person before the Father through prayer, supplication and humility - we have to deny our 'self' to take responsibility for them just as Yeshua did for us. This is the example, the standard of excellence He set for us to follow. We have already been given the authority to loose the force, the Power of Light before us as we walk in this world IF we take the responsibility to bear the sin of others as His Body. He bore our sin for all of eternity - eternity is a moment by moment existence that begins right now. He is still bearing the sin of the world in and through us - His Body.

At the convergence of Light and darkness there will be turmoil. As with Yeshua that Light, if it is pure, will either be accepted or rejected by men - there will be no middle ground. It is our appointment to be sure that, if separation comes, it is not of our doing. If the Light within us is pure, darkness will attempt to extinguish us as it did with Him (Matthew 10:23-25). It then becomes our responsibility to not shrink back in fear of the consequences, but to shine in the midst of the darkness. When we forgive, because it is the essence of Who He Is and what the Kingdom of Heaven is about, our ACT of forgiveness causes the Kingdom of Righteousness to be loosed into this earthly realm. This is HOW His Will is done on earth as it is in heaven (Matthew 6:9-10). It is we, the Body of Christ, who become the instrument by which He is manifest in this earthly realm.

"Who, being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high´┐Ż" Hebrews 1:3