And he entered into a ship, and passed over, and came into his own city.…
One real case of bodily paralysis may help us to picture what above all things we ought to know, the state of our own inner life. I have seen this quoted from the medical records at Paris: — A man was attacked by a creeping paralysis; sight was the first to fail; soon after, hearing went; then, by degrees, taste, smell, touch, and the very power of motion. He could breathe, he could swallow, he could think, and, strange to say, he could speak; that was all; not the very slightest message from without could possibly, it seemed, reach his mind, nothing to tell him what was near, who was still alive; the world was utterly lost to him, and he all but lost to the world. At last, one day, an accident showed that one small place on one cheek had its feeling left. It seemed a revelation from heaven. By tracing letters on that place, his wife and children could speak to him, his dark dungeon-wall was pierced, his tongue had never lost its power, and once more he was a man among men. Strange this, and true; a parable too if we read it aright. The worst kind of paralysis, but, God be thanked, far the rarest of all, is that of the heart and conscience. There never was a man with no affections and no sense of right and wrong. But never must they be pronounced past cure. God alone knows our real state; there is always some tender spot in our nature, some sensitive place on which He can write in characters of love, and it may be some one's privilege to find it — the thought of a mother, of the days of childhood, of a little one who died, or whatever it be, God- can still use that as a means of cure.
(H. S. Swithinbank, M. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And he entered into a ship, and passed over, and came into his own city.