Back in the boat, Jesus and the disciples recrossed the sea to Jesus' hometown.
They were hardly out of the boat when some men carried a paraplegic on a stretcher and set him down in front of them. Jesus, impressed by their bold belief, said to the paraplegic, "Cheer up, son. I forgive your sins."
Some religion scholars whispered, "Why, that's blasphemy!"
Jesus knew what they were thinking, and said, "Why this gossipy whispering?
Which do you think is simpler: to say, 'I forgive your sins,' or, 'Get up and walk'?
Well, just so it's clear that I'm the Son of Man and authorized to do either, or both. . . ." At this he turned to the paraplegic and said, "Get up. Take your bed and go home."
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)