And it came to pass on a certain day, as he was teaching, that there were Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting by, who were come out of every town of Galilee, and Judea, and Jerusalem: and the power of the Lord was present to heal them.
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Ambrose of Milan
Mighty is the Lord who pardons one man for the good deed of another, and while he approves of the one, forgives the other his sins. Why, O man, with you does not your fellowman prevail, when with God a servant has both the liberty to intercede in your behalf, and the power of obtaining what he asks? If you despair of the pardon of heavy sins, bring the prayers of others, bring the Church to pray for you, and at sight of this the Lord may pardon what man denies to you.
From His very works therefore the Son of God receives testimony. For it is both more powerful evidence when men confess unwillingly, and a more fatal error when they who deny are left to the consequence of their own assertions. Hence it follows, Who can forgive sins, but God only? Great is the madness of an unbelieving people, who though they have confessed that it is of God alone to forgive sins, believe not God when He forgives sins.
The Lord wishing to save sinners shows Himself to be God, by His knowledge of the secre...
But our Lord's saying, Man, your sins are forgiven, conveys the meaning that the man had his sins forgiven him, because in that he was man, he could not say, “I have not sinned,”but at the same time also, that He who forgave sins might be known to be God.
With respect to the sick of the palsy, we may understand that the soul relaxed in its limbs i.e. its operations, seeks Christ, i.e. the meaning of God's word, but is hindered bythe crowds, that is to say, unless it discovers the secrets of the thoughts, i.e. the dark parts of the Scriptures, and thereby arrives at the knowledge of Christ.
The men then by whom he is let down may signify the doctors of the Church. But that he is let down with the couch, signifies that Christ ought to be known by man, while yet abiding in his flesh.
That the infirm soul may no more rest in carnal joys, as in a bed, but rather itself restrain the carnal affections, and tend toward its own home, i.e. the resting-place of the secrets of its hear...
The Lord about to cure the man of his palsy, first loosens the chains of his sins, that He may show him, that on account of the bonds of his sins, he is punished with the loosening of his joints, and that unless the former are set free, he cannot be healed to the recovery of his limbs. Hence it follows, And when he saw their faith
For they say true, that no one can forgive sins but God, who yet forgives through those to whom He gives the power of forgiving. And therefore Christ is proved to be truly God, for He is able to forgive sins as God.
And the house where Jesus was is well described as covered with tiles, since beneath the beggarly covering of letters is found the spiritual power of grace. ...
By this they hasten the sentence of death, for it was commanded in the law, that whoever blasphemed God should be punished with death.
As if to say, OPharisees' since you say, Who can forgive sins, but God alone? I answer you, Who can search the secrets of the heart, but God alone, Who says by His prophet, I am the Lord. that search the hearts, and tries the reins. ...
But the fame of Jesus had now spread far and wide. It was for this reason that it is here said, the Pharisees and doctors of the law came out of every town in Galilee not indeed through any intention of becoming his disciples, but through a spirit of envy; as they now saw every one leaving them, and following our Saviour. Perhaps also to calumniate him, as we often find them to have done, when they beheld him making converts from them. (Denis the Carthusian) ...
But they are to be admired who brought in the paralytic, since on finding that they could not enter in at the door, they attempted a new and untried way. As it follows, And when they could not find by what way they might bring him in, they went upon the housetop But unroofing the house they let down the couch, and place the paralytic in the midst, as it follows, And they let him down through the tilings. Some one may say, that the place was let down, from which they lowered the couch of the palsied man through the tilings.
But there was combined in this the faith also of the sufferer himself. For he would not have submitted to be let down, had he not believed.
Now if we suffer bodily, we are enough concerned to get rid of the hurtful thing; but when there has harm happened to the soul, we delay, and so are neither cured of our bodily ailments. Letus then remove the fountain of evil, and the waters of sickness will cease to flow. But from fear of the multitude, the Pharisees durst not o...