“And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay.”
There has never been a time where Satan has left us alone to live spiritual life. Once, my son came and spoke to me in the car,
“Father, we are trying to hold a seminar at Korea University, but other churches are disturbing us so much. They rip our posters and interfere with our seminar. This is my first time experiencing such things; I do not know what to do.”
I told my son, “Hey Young Gook, never once did I not experience any form of persecution and disturbance while doing this work. But the important thing is that the God working for us is greater than their God. That is why at first rather than seeing God we saw our situation, and so we were afraid and worried. Nevertheless, as we continued working, God was always on our side. God is especially pleased with the preaching of the Gospel. Whenever I preached the Gospel, although I lacked and had weaknesses, God helped me each time. If you choose not to do the work of God because it is burdensome, you will not be able to do it for the rest of your life. Go and confront it. You will then see how much God loves you and is working inside of you.”
The good thing about my son is that because I am his father, he has the heart to trust in me. My 3 grandchildren came from the U.S.A and stayed with me for about 1 month and returned yesterday. Whenever I see my grandchildren, they live under parents and grandparents who care for them. Therefore they do not have to try to do anything, and so they have the heart of trusting in us. Seeing this, I realized how blessed they are.
One of my friends lived in his uncle’s house after his parents divorced early in his life. He did not trust anyone around him. It seemed wise not to trust, but he lost many people around him. He then began to live an isolated life. While we trust in God, He dwells amongst us. Although we have never touched God nor seen His face; I could feel that God was helping us on our side.
My son believed in my words, and he began confronting Korea University with the Gospel. Many people ended up receiving salvation and we also received a society room. As he saw God working in Korea University, from then on my son’s heart began to change.
“Ah, God is always with us. When doing the work of God there are always hardships and difficulties, however God fulfills everything beautifully.”
He was able to experience this. Two weeks ago I preached about the man with palsy during Sunday service, and I also preached about it for two days in Daeduk and Gangneung each. Mark chapters 2 is such an amazing word, the more I read it and embrace it, my heart is drenched in it and I become so happy, peaceful and joyful. Every single verse is alive and gives strength and hope to our hearts.
Especially verse 4 which I read today, Jesus was at a certain house in Capernaum and I believe that day was the Day of Sabbath. That is probably why he did not preach at the synagogue. Capernaum was a small city by the Sea of Galilee. There was Tiberias, Bethsaida and Capernaum. When I visited Capernaum I saw the old synagogue floor, and many other historical sites.
When Jesus came to one house in Capernaum in order to preach, a certain man with palsy was carried by men and taken before Jesus. There were so many people that they could not even come to the front of the door. Not even a strong man could enter, and so there was no room for this man with palsy to lie down. It seemed difficult and even impossible for this man with palsy to meet Jesus. It was so difficult to meet Jesus, but they could not turn back. They worried, and then they uncovered the roof and brought the man down.
In order to break down the obstacles which prevented the man from meeting Jesus, they had many thoughts and then finally decided to uncover the roof and bring the man down. It says that Jesus saw their faith. He saw his faith and said, “Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.”
Why did they uncover the roof? “Jesus will definitely heal this sickness if I meet him. He will heal my sickness!” The man had this faith. Whenever we go before the Lord, the very first heart Satan gives us is “I can’t do it. I don’t have faith. I am weak.” Through such thoughts, Satan breaks down our heart towards God. Even the man with palsy probably thought when they came to the house, “This is my limit, I cannot enter. There is nothing that can be done.”
The important thing is, the God we believe in is God. It is important for us to go before God, but if the Lord does not hold on to us, no one can stand before God.
The man with palsy thought, “This must be my limit, there are so many people, how can I enter? I should just return home.”
However, the man with palsy then said, “No, I came this close already, if I don’t meet him now I will never be able to meet him. Who will cure my sickness? Who will be responsible for my soul? Even if I stay up the whole night, I must meet Jesus. I need to wait for Jesus.”
As he waited, they thought to uncover the roof let him down. Everyone, Satan puts these kinds of thoughts inside of us very often. Recently, as I read about Abraham, in Genesis chapter 12 God told Abraham, “I will make of thee a great nation.”
In Genesis chapter 15, God took Abraham outside and told him, “Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, ‘So shall thy seed be.’”
God said this in chapter 15, however Sarah said in chapter 16, “Behold now, the Lord hath restrained me from bearing.”
When did the Lord restrain Sarah from bearing? When did God restrain Abraham from bearing? It is not so. God said that He would make of him a great nation, and said his seed would be blessed. But Sarah did not heed the voice of God but the voice of Satan. She was deceived by those words and therefore said, “Behold now, the Lord hath restrained me from bearing.”
In the same way, even today Satan causes so many people who are advancing in faith to think to themselves, “I can’t do it. How can I enter? How can I enter with my bed? It doesn’t make sense!” Although he had this thought, and his heart wavered, the faith inside the man with palsy and his friends remained unchanged. They found a way, and the Lord gave them the heart to uncover the roof in order to meet Jesus. Therefore they went on top of the roof and uncovered it.
They thought to themselves, “We can fix the roof, we need our friend to be cured! If the master gets angry at us, we will explain to him that we will fix it well. We will say, ‘Excuse Sir, we will fix this roof again. Please allow this man to meet Jesus!’”
This kind of heart would enable anyone to meet Jesus. The unfortunate thing is that many people come before the Lord and then listen to the excuses of Satan and think to themselves, “I cannot do it. God has not given me the opportunity. It is not my time. It is impossible to meet Jesus.”
They hear the voice of Satan and then return. If this had happened to the man with palsy, how unfortunate it would have been. But the man with palsy did not do so. Satan makes it seem as if there is no way and tells you there is no way. But the man said, “No, Jesus is our way.” That is why they were able to uncover the roof, and the Bible does not say that they fixed the roof afterwards. They probably did, however the fact that the Bible does not mention fixing the roof means that uncovering the roof was not considered a big problem.
The man was healed of his palsy, and fulfilled the glory by running around with joy. Is it a problem for a baseball player to ruin his uniform when sliding into a base? It is no problem at all. A baseball player should not boast about a clean uniform, but boast about his skills. Even if his clothes and shoes get dirty, he does his best as a baseball player.
Likewise, when we preach the Gospel, just as a baseball player ruins his uniform, even if we are cursed at and face burdens, what problem is that to us? How can we preach the Gospel without such things? How would the man with palsy become healed, forgiven of sins and praise the lord and Jesus without such things?
Therefore if we try to be calm and peaceful we cannot get anything done. As we face difficulties, we are cursed at and persecuted, however if we have the same kind of heart as the man with palsy when his friends uncovered the roof; then we can do all things and live a glorious life before God.
Brothers and sisters, this Gospel that we have is such a precious Gospel. When we live for this Gospel, let us not just think about living a comfortable and convenient life, but bear fruits through enduring hardships and persecution. I hope for that kind of heart.
As this man took up his bed, he went to every village and road he proclaimed, “I came here lying on this mat. Do you know me? I was a paralyzed man, but Jesus cured me!” He had so much unspeakable happiness in his heart. He went home and met his wife, hugged her and was so happy.
“Hey! Your father is healed! Your father is standing! He is walking!” There was so much happiness in his family.
Even today, although it seems impossible and closed, if we believe in the Lord and uncover and break through and meet Jesus, we will be blessed. Thank you.