1. When was a time when you needed a fresh start in your life? What happened?
2. Matthew 9:1-8 tells a powerful story of Jesus’ authority. Read through Matthew 8:1-9:34 to see and make note of the themes of Jesus’ authority in the surrounding context. What does Jesus have authority over?
3. Why do you think that Jesus began talking with the paralyzed man about sin and forgiveness?
4. What is the significance of Jesus healing the man second only after forgiving his sins?
5. The great conflict in this story arises between Jesus and the teachers of the law. What is the conflict they have and why is it a big deal?
6. Where is one place in your life today where you need a fresh start? Identify one practical way you will respond this week. Write it down, reflect on it, and put it into practice this week. If you are in a small group, discuss this with one another.