"Only God can forgive sins."
One day some Pharisees and
experts in the Law of Moses sat listening to Jesus teach. They had come
from every village in Galilee and Judea and from
God had given Jesus the power to heal the sick, and some people came carrying a crippled man on a mat. They tried to take him inside the house and put him in front of Jesus. But because of the crowd, they could not get him to Jesus. So they went up on the roof, where they removed some tiles and let the mat down in the middle of the room.
When Jesus saw how much faith they had, he said to the crippled man, "My friend, your sins are forgiven."
The Pharisees and the experts began arguing, "Jesus must think he is God! Only God can forgive sins."
Jesus knew what they were thinking, and he said, "Why are you thinking that? Is it easier for me to tell this crippled man that his sins are forgiven or to tell him to get up and walk? But now you will see that the Son of Man has the right to forgive sins here on earth." Jesus then said to the man, "Get up! Pick up your mat and walk home."
At once the man stood up in front of everyone. He picked up his mat and went home, giving thanks to God. Everyone was amazed and praised God. What they saw surprised them, and they said, "We have seen a great miracle today!"
Contemporary English Version The Holy Bible (New York , NY: American Bible Society 1995)