Archpriest Vitalian (Drobotun)

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Glory to Jesus Christ, dear brothers and sisters!

I congratulate you with the Holy Communion, with consecration of your soul and body.

Today we have hear really very interesting Gospel about the healing of the Paralytic (Mark ІІ:1-12). We constantly read the Holy Gospel, where God shows His love and mercy to people. And today we see the same case. God preached and told people about salvation and the Kingdom of God. A lot of people surrounded Him, because at that time they did not have any knowledge; so they were interested.

Some people considered Jesus as the Messiah, some people did not think so. Some people thought that He was the prophet, who came to teach. But there already were talks that He made miracles. People did not understand in full how He could make miracles, or God made them? So they brought a Paralytic to Him, paralyzed person in modern language. Next, they saw that they couldn’t come in because of the crowd. Finally, they removed the roof above Him and let down the bed on which the paralytic lay to Jesus’ feet.

Can you imagine this? Jesus was preaching, was telling about the Kingdom of God and some people removed the roof, because they wanted to help their friend very much. And the reaction of Jesus is very clear. He saw their faith and said: “Son, your sins are forgiven” .

And we can think over His words. Why did he say such phrase? Because one of the aspects of our illnesses is in our sins.

But it isn’t always happens in such way. If we look through the Gospel, we can see that God healed and did not say that words every time: “Son, your sins are forgiven”. He also said: “Let it be according to your faith.”

Do you remember how He healed the man, who was blind by nature? He did not consider him as a sinner. Do you remember how Apostles asked Jesus: “Why was he born blind?” and Jesus answered: “He was born in the name of God’s glory, that God could show His miracle on him.”

But this Gospel has this kind of miracle with words “Son, your sins are forgiven”. This man probably sinned during his life and got a punishment. The suffering was given as the paralytic state of body for some time. How long it was? We do not know. He got sufferings in order to miss sufferings in hell, to work on his sins here on the Earth and in the future get into the Kingdom of God.

It is clear that people did not understand Jesus’ words. Some scribes were sitting in that house and they started to question in their hearts. “Why does this man speak like that? He is blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone?” It was their jealousy.

And immediately Jesus said to them, “Why do you question these things in your hearts? Which is easier to say to the paralytic?”

And we can also think: What is easier to say to some ill person? “your sins are forgiven” or “rise, take up your bed and walk”.

If we say: “your sins are forgiven”, we do not know whether they were forgiven or not. If we say: “rise, take up your bed and walk” and the man will not rise and will not walk, we are going to be ashamed. And all people will understand that we have no power and God does not heal ill man.

That is why Jesus said: “But 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, rise, pick up your bed, and go home.” And he rose and immediately picked up his bed and went out before them all.

And here God shows the mission of Jesus to help people to be healed spiritually and become purified from all sins of the Earth. And in this case after spiritual healing immediately comes physical healing. And it is clear that all people were amazed and glorified God.

So do we, dear brothers and sisters, are so impressed how God can make such miracles. We are surprised how God can heal spiritually and automatically heal physical health. And we wonder why God does not heal other people, when they pray for us, or we pray for them. We do not understand in full how it works - the spiritual and physical healing. And we will not understand it till the end.

But we are conscious Christians and we remember that God and Apostles called us to pray for ill people, to console them, to help them any way we can with word or prayer, secretly or openly. And the healing is the God’s mercy. We do not know the God’s will. But at the same time we must be wise and do not take someone’s fault. We have to pray for a person, who suffers and always add words: “Oh God, let everything happens according to your will”. Because we do not know the reason of his/her illness.

That is why, dear brothers and sisters, lets understand in full what God told us in this Gospel and believe that the Lord has a power to heal, as the friends of Paralytic believed. Secondly, we have to confess our sins, that God could heal us spiritually and physically. Thirdly, try to live the way God told us: follow Him, even if it is very difficult, despite all events around us, rely on God, pray to Him and fill up with God’s grace through Holy Communion, through the meeting in the God’s Temple, through communication and good doings. In such way the Holy Spirit will be with us, will bless us and we will be always with God.

Glory to Jesus Christ!