I read two things today that reminded me of something important: the need to focus on the real issue, the real problem, in business matters, spiritual matters, and relational matters.

Mark 2: 1-12 says this:

And again [Jesus] entered into Capernaum after some days; and it was noised that he was in the house. And straightway many were gathered together, insomuch that there was no room to receive them, no, not so much as about the door: and he preached the word unto them.

 

And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four. 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.

 

When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy,

 

“Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.”

 

But there were certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their hearts, “Why doth this man thus speak blasphemies? who can forgive sins but God only?”

 

And immediately when Jesus perceived in his spirit that they so reasoned within themselves, he said unto them,

 

“Why reason ye these things in your hearts? Whether is it easier to say to the sick of the palsy, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk?”

 

“But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins,” (he saith to the sick of the palsy,) “I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house.”

 

And immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch that they were all amazed, and glorified God, saying,

 

“We never saw it on this fashion.”

. . .

An article called 25 Minute Design School says this:

“Instead of setting yourself on an unalterable trajectory toward a single solution, first try to figure out if you’re asking the right questions. Instead of asking “How do we build a bridge?” ask “How do we get across the river?”“

Image Credit: Oregon Trail, MECC

. . .

These tie together in this way:

In the design school article, the author reminds the reader of the importance of asking the right question.

What is your point? What are you trying to accomplish? Don’t get distracted.

I think Jesus did that exact thing when he healed the paralytic.

The scribes challenged Jesus’ power to forgive sins. He addressed them, but then turned to whom he really wanted to teach and said:

“But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (. . .) I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house.”

He didn’t say this to the scribes, he said it to paralytic. Perhaps it is because Jesus knew that the paralytic wondered (perhaps after hearing Jesus express the doubts of the scribes) if his sins really were forgiven. To Jesus, the important question wasn’t: do the scribes know that I can forgive sins? It was: does this paralytic know I have forgiven his sins?

. . .

The tricky thing here is whether or not the whole portion of

“But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins,” (he saith to the sick of the palsy,) “I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house.”

was said to the paralytic or if the first half was to the scribes and the second to the paralytic. If the second version is correct, then my connection doesn’t really hold water.