by the Rev. Andrew Kuyvenhoven
These readings focus on the Holy Spirit. In the Old Covenant (or Testament), the Spirit "anoints" one person here and one there to perform a special work for God. In the New Covenant, the Spirit is "poured out" like rain on the whole church of Christ.
"But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins ... take your mat and go home" (Mark 2:10–11).
Jesus could heal with his touch. But most frequently he healed by his word.
Jesus was preaching in a house jam-packed with people. Since it was impossible for anyone to enter through the door, the friends of a fellow who was paralyzed made an opening in the roof. Everyone gazed in amazement as the mat was lowered from the rafters.
Jesus "saw their faith." These four men knew their friend would get better if only they could get him to Jesus. That was true faith. You and I and our friends must get to Jesus, too, because he can heal all of us.
"Son, your sins are forgiven,' Jesus said. This response was unexpected. But Jesus knows our real needs. Just as sin is the cause of all human problems, so forgiveness is the beginning of all blessings.
The teachers of the law were irritated with Jesus. "Who can forgive sins but God alone?" they demanded (v. 7). And they were right.
Then, to show that he had God's authority to forgive sins, Christ spoke another word of power: "I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home."
The physical healing was the sign that Christ has power to forgive sins. God will heal the whole wounded cosmos through Jesus Christ. As God made the world by his Word and Spirit, God will also restore our lives by his creative powers.
Andrew Kuyvenhoven's Daylight, a modern devotional classic, was originally published in 1994. This edition is copyright by Faith Alive Christian Resources, from whom may be ordered Daylight, the predecessor of Twilight.
A man of many accomplishments, Andrew Kuyvenhoven is probably best known for his contributions to Today (formerly The Family Altar), a widely-used monthly devotional booklet associated with the Back to God Hour. Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations for this edition of Twilight are from the New International Version