A Change of Mind
Jesus returned to Capernaum where he forgave the sins of a paralyzed man, to the consternation of the scribes; therefore, Jesus healed him, the man picked up the pallet that he had been brought in on and walked out in the sight of everyone. Jesus called Levi who had been near by and he followed him. Jesus ate in Levi’s whom with Levi’s friends but the Pharisees questioned his eating with sinners. Jesus indicated that people fast when they are in great need. People who are use to the old way cannot except the new. The Lord of the Sabbath declared that the Sabbath was made for the good of man.
A man can forgive sins that are committed against him but not the sins committed against another man. However, all sin is against God, therefore, God can forgive all sin. The Scribes being versed in the Scriptures understood this, so when Jesus forgave the sins of this man who had done nothing wrong to Jesus’ they called it blaspheme. The man had not stolen from Jesus, he had not committed adultery with Jesus’ wife and he had not coveted the things that belonged to the man named Jesus. However he had done wrong to others and God. By forgiving the man’s sins, Jesus was forgiving the man on behalf of God and the Scribes understood; therefore, they called it blaspheme. However, Jesus is God in human flesh and proved it by doing a miracle, in their sight, that only God could do. In John 10:38, Jesus said, “Though you do not believe me, believe the works, so that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father.” The scribes and the Pharisees did not believe even when they saw this miracle but one whom they considered a sinner. A man in their view who was outside of the kingdom of God did believe. When Jesus said to Levi, “Follow Me!” He got up and followed Jesus.
Levi’s tax collecting booth was near by, so he saw what happened and he believed in Jesus when the religious people did not. They are the old garments and the old wine skins in the parable who could can not take a new patch or new wine because it would destroy them. Therefore, we should be careful of what we are holding too. Is what we believe true or do we hold to it because it is what we have always done? The scribes and the Pharisees could not except a new covenant because they were comfortable in the old covenant, even though they were not able to live up to its precepts. No man could live up to the demands of the law, except the Son of God.