What Jesus Did! 'Authority, Part 1' — Matthew 9:3-8

Thursday, April 15, 2021

But some of the teachers of religious law said to themselves, "That's blasphemy [when Jesus told the paralyzed man his sins were forgiven]! Does he think he's God?"

Jesus knew what they were thinking, so he asked them, "Why do you have such evil thoughts in your hearts? Is it easier to say 'Your sins are forgiven,' or 'Stand up and walk'? So I will prove to you that the Son of Man has the authority on earth to forgive sins." Then Jesus turned to the paralyzed man and said, "Stand up, pick up your mat, and go home!"

And the man jumped up and went home! Fear swept through the crowd as they saw this happen. And they praised God for giving humans such authority.

— Matthew 9:3-8 NLT

Key Thought

Jesus has authority! All authority! Not just on the earth, but in heaven. While we may be amazed at the miracles of Jesus, his power over nature, his power over disease, his power over death, and his power over sin are of ultimate importance to us. He can liberate us from sin's hold and set us free. We can be forgiven, cleansed, and delivered from sin. While giving a paralytic back his ability to walk is amazing, giving us forgiveness of sin is saving!

Today's Prayer

Almighty God, thank you for sending Jesus to be the atoning sacrifice for my sin. Thank you that you loved me so much that you emptied heaven of your sinless Son so he could ransom me from my sin. Thank you that I can stand before you without spot or blemish and be free from any accusation and be holy in your sight because of Jesus' forgiveness. It is in his precious name that I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Matthew 28:18
  • Ephesians 1:7-8
  • Colossians 1:13-14


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Illustration of Matthew 9:3-8 NLT — "Stand up, pick up your mat, and go home!"

About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware and is available in book form.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.