In the account of the healing of the paralytic in Mark 2:1-12, Jesus first forgives the man his sins. Then he addresses the thoughts of the scribes directly:
And immediately Jesus, perceiving in his spirit that they thus questioned within themselves, said to them, “Why do you question these things in your hearts? Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Rise, take up your bed and walk’? (Mark 2:8-9 ESV)
Let’s consider which is easier.
To heal the man he spoke a sentence:
“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, so that they were all amazed and glorified God, saying, “We never saw anything like this!” (Mark 2:11-12 ESV)
As the one who would bear every sin, even thinking about what was required brought extraordinary stress:
And (Jesus) took with him Peter and James and John, and began to be greatly distressed and troubled. And he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death. Remain here and watch.” (Mark 14:33-34 ESV)
And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground. (Luke 22:44 ESV)
He would be mocked, beaten, spit on, whipped, and crucified.
And he died:
Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” And having said this he breathed his last. (Luke 23:46 ESV)
Because he suffered and died – and ROSE! – our sins can be forgiven:
And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him. (Hebrews 9:27-28 ESV)
Lord, please help me to never forget that healing of bodies is easy for you, but forgiveness of sins was unfathomably costly. Please help me to remember that these days are short and eternity is very long. Thank you, Father, for Jesus.