THE JESUS I DIDN’T KNOW: THRU THE ROOF

How well do you know Jesus? We all like to think we know Jesus pretty well. I’ve had close to fifty years of wonderful, sweet communion with Jesus. I’ve devoted over forty years of my life to studying and teaching His Word. I’m talking about going back to the original languages and learning as much as I can about Jewish culture, institutions, and beliefs. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not a Know-It-All. And you can ask my kids: I’m not inerrant or infallible. But still, knowing what I know, I’d like to think I know Jesus pretty good. To my pleasant surprise, however, I don’t know Jesus as good as I think I do. To this day, He still shows me more about Himself. Here, let me give you some snippets of the Jesus I never knew.

THRU THE ROOF

Placing myself in John’s sandals, Hey guys. It’s me, John the Beloved, the Lord’s disciple. If you think following the Lord was all peachy and hunky-dory, well, you got it wrong. Us disciples had our times and disagreements when we didn’t see eye-to-eye with the God Man. I wished He’d listen to us sometimes. But He didn’t. And we all, especially Him, got in a heap of trouble for it.

Let me tell you something that happened that sent the scribes thru the roof. You know who the scribes are, don’t you? They’re the guys who copied the Scriptures by hand. Because of their job, they knew every jot-and-tittle of the Scriptures. They knew it more than anyone else around or alive. So everybody, including us Christians, respected them as experts and scholars of the Scriptures.

Well, Jesus was home in Capernaum one day and the house was crammed full of folks who wanted to hear Jesus teach. I’d never seen such spiritual hunger before. No joke, there wasn’t any space left to get another soul in that house. In fact, there was a lot more people outdoors and everyone was just itching to hear what Jesus had to say. Among the privileged folks who got to have a seat in the house was a handful of scribes who’d come from Jerusalem to see what Jesus had to say.

Anyways, things was going along just fine, Jesus was preaching away when, suddenly, bits and pieces of the roof started falling on us like hail from the sky. We all looked up, flabbergasted, as we seen four guys tearing up the roof. I kid you not. These guys were taking the tiles off the roof! It looked like the Lucas Oil Stadium on a hot Sunday afternoon. I guess everyone of us was shocked—not even the homeowner said anything about it. We just sat there, dumbfounded, that these guys had the nerve to tear someone’s roof apart. What in tarnation were they up to? That’s what we all wanted to know.

Before long, here comes a stretcher down thru the roof. On it lay a paralyzed fella. He looked about as shook up as we all were. Betcha he was relieved just to be back on solid ground. I can imagine how scared he must have been to get carried up there, then lowered thru the roof. His buddies tried to bring him thru the door, but there was just no letting them in. There wasn’t any room. So they climbed on the roof—stretcher and all—and tore the roof apart to get the hapless chap to Jesus.  Obviously, they wanted Jesus to heal him.

I wish the God Man didn’t do what He did next. This is one of those times when we just didn’t see eye-to-eye. Anyways, the God Man looked at the guy on the stretcher and says, My son, your sins are forgiven (Mark 2:5). This is when, in the spirit, I seen these scribes go right thru the roof like a rocket taking off from Cape Canaveral. No one can forgive sins but God alone!, these scribes said quietly to themselves. This Guy’s a blasphemer! He’s no Man of God!

Well, Jesus knew plain as day that these scribes were sitting right in front of Him. And He knew full well that He’d get flack for saying something like this. Why couldn’t He have said that quietly instead of out loud? If He’d done it like I would have, He wouldn’t have riled these scribes up and sent them thru the roof.

You know me. I’m the apostle of love. If it was up to me, I’d work with these scholars, patient and gentle like. I’d try to convince them that I really am the God Man. Isaiah 7:14 and Isaiah 9:6-7 talked about Me. The prophet told us, and the scribes would have remembered it once I reminded them about it, that God would one day come into our midst as a Man. He’d come as a Jew, looking like any other Jew. Except He’d be God. Well, I’m that God Man. And that’s why I can forgive this guy’s sins. So it’s not blasphemy for Me to do it. If Jesus had only done it my way, we’d have won these scribes to our side and, man, what a witness that would have been! It’d have been a whole lot nicer to have these Scripture heavyweights on our side, instead of against us. But, we lost them that day, no thanks to Jesus.

Just so you know, I’m not a God Man. I don’t know everything. And I need to be reminded, from time to time, that My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, says the Lord (Isaiah 55:8). I guess I learned that day that the God Man isn’t out to win everybody to His side. He didn’t do that for the religious leaders in Jerusalem, nor for the Pharisees, and now for the scribes. He knew who His inveterate critics were and He didn’t try to win them. Truth is, most of them would never be won. They had their minds made up about Jesus and no one, not even the God Man, was gonna change them. At the start, I had this picture that Jesus was gonna win everybody. He wasn’t gonna make enemies. He was gonna be peaceable-like and not send anybody thru the roof. Boy was I wrong! I just didn’t know Jesus that good. But thanks to Him, I know Him better. And, yes, take it from me. The God Man knows best. His ways are better than ours. And none of us is smarter than Him. I thought I was. But I ain’t. Now I know.

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