12 While Jesus was in one of the towns, a man came to him who was covered with leprosy. When he saw Jesus, he bowed down with his face to the ground and begged him, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.” 13 So he stretched out his hand and touched him, saying, “I am willing. Be clean!” And immediately the leprosy left him. 14 Then he ordered the man to tell no one, but commanded him, “Go and show yourself to a priest, and bring the offering for your cleansing, as Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.” 15 But the news about him spread even more, and large crowds were gathering together to hear him and to be healed of their illnesses. 16 Yet Jesus himself frequently withdrew to the wilderness and prayed.
17 Now on one of those days, while he was teaching, there were Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting nearby (who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem), and the power of the Lord was with him to heal. 18 Just then some men showed up, carrying a paralyzed man on a stretcher. They were trying to bring him in and place him before Jesus. 19 But since they found no way to carry him in because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and let him down on the stretcher through the roof tiles right in front of Jesus. 20 When Jesus saw their faith he said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.” 21 Then the experts in the law and the Pharisees began to think to themselves, “Who is this man who is uttering blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?” 22 When Jesus perceived their hostile thoughts, he said to them, “Why are you raising objections within yourselves? 23 Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Stand up and walk’? 24 But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins” – he said to the paralyzed man – “I tell you, stand up, take your stretcher and go home.” 25 Immediately he stood up before them, picked up the stretcher he had been lying on, and went home, glorifying God. 26 Then astonishment seized them all, and they glorified God. They were filled with awe, saying, “We have seen incredible things today.”