Green triangles are narrated and fully illustrated and will have simple animation added along the way. Yellow triangles have narration, but the illustrations aren't done yet. Videos with red triangles are planned. New and updated videos will be added very often.
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There was a man living in Capernaum who was paralyzed. That means that he couldn’t walk. And not only that, he couldn’t move his legs at all. When he tried to wiggle his toes, they just wouldn’t move. And when he tried to bend his knee, it just wouldn’t budge.
What would your life be like if you couldn’t move your legs, and you didn’t have a wheelchair? Try it. Try to move from where you are right now to somewhere else without moving your legs at all. If you wanted to go somewhere, how would you get there? How would you get food? Not easy, is it?
But this man had some really special friends. They loved him a lot and wanted to help him, even when he couldn’t help himself.
The friends had also heard about Jesus. They had heard about the amazing miracles He could do, and they believed. So they had an idea. “Let’s take our friend to Jesus. He can heal him!”
So four of the man’s friends picked up the mat that their friend was lying on and headed out to find Jesus.
When they got to the place where Jesus was teaching, there was a HUGE crowd. The friends tried squeezing in this way. They tried squeezing through that way.
“Um… coming through.”
But it was no use. The crowd was just too big. They could not get through the crowd to Jesus.
Hmmm… What were they going to do? Do you think the friends just shrugged and said, “Oh well, we tried. Too bad for our friend. It’s just too hard.” No!
Even when things could have seemed hopeless, they loved their friend, and they were going to keep looking for a way to get him all the way to Jesus.
Hmmm… Think, Think, Think. What about the back door? No, that was blocked too.
Hmmm… Think, Think, Think. What about… the window? No, there were people huddled around the window listening to Jesus’ voice.
Hmmm…. Think, Think, Think. What about the roof? Maybe they could find a way to Jesus from up there!
So they hurried around and found steps up to the roof. This might work! But now that they were on the roof, HOW were they going to get to Jesus?
Hmmm… There was only one way. They would have to MAKE a way. They listened to the sound of Jesus’ voice until they found exactly where He was sitting underneath them. Then — rip, rip, rip, rip! They started RIPPING off the roof right above Jesus until there was a big HOLE. They peered down through the hole. Do you know what they saw? Jesus looking up at them with a big smile.
Right away the four friends lowered the paralyzed man down through the roof and set him right in front of Jesus.
Isn’t it really special how much these friends cared? And also how the man on the mat let his friends help him. He must have trusted them a lot to let them drop him down through a roof. Without his friends, this man would probably have been stuck lying on his mat at home for the rest of his life. And even worse, he would not have had a chance to see Jesus. But these friends had that gutsy attitude of faith that said, “We’ll find a way or we’ll make a way to get our friend to Jesus!”
Because they refused to give up, their friend made it all the way to Jesus! YOU can be a friend like that, too, who will look for solutions and find the ways to help your friends get all the way to Jesus. Never giving up, no matter how things look.
When Jesus saw the faith of the man’s friends, He said to the paralyzed man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”
The man’s sins were forgiven? That’s even better than what they were asking! Having paralyzed legs is a very hard thing in this life, but the way that sin paralyzes and destroys your heart is way more painful than hurt legs.
But some religious pretenders were watching what was happening. And they were offended by what Jesus said. (Really they were jealous of Jesus, and jealousy will always look for ways to tear down the other person.) “Who does Jesus think He is?” they thought. “No one can forgive sins except for God!”
Even though Jesus didn’t hear the men with His ears, He knew their ugly thoughts. So He asked them, “Why are you offended by what I’m saying? Which of these things is easier to say to someone? ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or ‘Stand up, pick up your mat, and walk.’ But just so you can know that the Son of Man really does have the authority on earth to forgive sins…”
Then Jesus turned to that paralyzed man and said, “Stand up, pick up your mat, and go home.”
So the paralyzed man stood straight up! He picked up his mat and went home just like Jesus had told him.
Those pretending phonies just stared with their mouths wide open as the man leapt and sang and worshiped and glorified God all the way home. I imagine the man’s friends were doing some leaping and dancing, too!
Jesus showed those pretenders that He really DID have authority, huh? Jesus was showing them that it takes authority to forgive sins and it takes authority to heal. There’s no difference. But since they wanted something they could see with their eyes, He did the eye-visible thing for them.
As you keep listening you’ll hear how Jesus did a lot of miracles like this. Do you know some of them? Is there one that you think of as Jesus’ greatest miracle? Maybe walking on water? Or healing lepers of the terrible owies all over their skin? Or making blind eyes see? Oh oh, I know! What about making a dead body live again? But like Jesus was showing here, there is an even greater miracle. And that is the miracle of changing lives. Jesus is the Rescuer who can forgive our sins, delivering us from the slavery of sin by giving us a new, soft heart that allows us to really change. Where there was anger, He can give love and peace. Where there was selfishness and pride, He can make generosity and humility spring up. Each of us can be one of Jesus’ greatest miracles! And have the faith to help our friends, too!