Your Next Chapter: Take Up Your Mat
Your Next Chapter: Pick Up Your Mat
John 5:1-18 The Healing at the Pool
Luke 5:17-39 Jesus Forgives and Heals a Paralyzed Man
In John 5:1-18 we are told the story of Jesus healing the invalid beside the pool of Bethesda. After healing the man, Jesus said to him, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.”
In Luke 5:17-39 is another miracle of Jesus. It is the story of friends bringing their paralyzed friend to Jesus by lowering him down through the roof. The first words of Jesus to him were: “Friend, your sins are forgiven.” His first need and ours is to receive forgiveness of sin.
That upset the Pharisees and teachers of the law. This is Jesus’ response: “Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” He told the paralyzed man, “I tell you, get up, take your mat, and go home.”
In both stories, Jesus tells the man (and us) to take up your mat. They were not coming back because they had been healed. The same thing is true for us when we receive Jesus as our Savior. The greatest miracle is the forgiveness of our sin.
What things should we carry on our mat?
- Forgiveness. Let it be a reminder that we are forgiven and should extend forgiveness to others.
- The wonder of Jesus. It will help us remember that feeling when we first trusted Christ. We should carry that wonder & awe with us everywhere we go and share it. (Godbumps, and not goosebumps.)
- Your story. We are to carry our story with us to be ready to share the great things God has done for us for His glory.
- Your mission. We have a mission given to us by Jesus. The Christian life is not about sitting in the pew each week but is about going out and sharing to our world the exciting, life-changing Gospel of Jesus Christ.