The job of a prophet was never fun. It was no exception for Amos. In the first reading today from Amos 7, Amos prophesies about Israel being exiled from their land. He then explains that he was not a prophet, but a simple shepherd and arborist. That is, until God revealed another plan for him.
In the Gospel reading from Matthew 9, Jesus heals a paralytic. But before He heals the man physically, He says to him, “Courage, child, your sins are forgiven.” Naturally, this caused no small controversy among the scribes. To show that He had authority on earth to forgive sins, Jesus tells the man to rise and walk. The Scripture says, “When the crowds saw this they were struck with awe and glorified God who had given such authority to men.”
Isn’t it interesting that Jesus forgave the man’s sins before He healed him physically? Why do you think that was? Just to create controversy? I believe it is because Jesus knew that the man had a much greater malady that being paralyzed. Sin. The same malady we all share. We can come to Jesus with all of our physical needs. But Jesus knows that we have a much greater need. The need for forgiveness. And He will take care of that for us every time we come in repentance.
Father, we come seeking healing – of body, mind and spirit. May Jesus heal us in every way we need healing. Amen.