Thursday, July 21, 2011

Drawing Near to Jesus

Luk 17:12 And as he entered into a certain village, there met him ten men that were lepers, which stood afar off: 13 And they lifted up their voices, and said, Jesus, Master, have mercy on us. 14 And when he saw them, he said unto them, Go shew yourselves unto the priests. And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were cleansed. 15 And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, 16 And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan. 17 And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine? 18 There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger. 19 And he said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole.

Lepers were the most outcast of anyone in society. Their highly communicable disease not only meant a death sentence, but it cut them off from society.

Therefore, they could only come within shouting distance of the Healer. Word had gotten around about His ability to alter the course of people's lives with one touch. And so they just had to make the effort to get in the vicinity of the Master. Yet, because of the constant throng around the Lord, there was no way they were going to touch the hem of His garment. They assumed He wouldn't/couldn't come to them because they were taboo!

But that didn't stop them from making a cry of desperation from the other hilltop. And He heard them. In fact He knew they'd be there before He got there. The Holy Spirit had already caused them to move from their leper colony to seek help.

And so He heard them and granted their request for mercy. He sent them away, the other way, to show the priests. That was the required method of inspection and declaration of cleansing from leprosy.

They came within shouting distance, they left to see the priests as their leprosy was falling away. None of them could even see the smile on His face, none was near enough to even witness the compassion in His eyes. None could see the look that would have told them He was testing them even as He was healing them.

Except for one. This healing was basically a resurrection from the dead. They would be reintegrated into society. They would soon get to hug their spouses and children once again. They would soon participate in synagogue activities once more. Life would be restored! And this one (former) leper realized the impact of what just happened.

Perhaps some of them were just busy obeying, in that they were to see the priests. Some were so over-joyed, they forgot to thank the Healer. Some were not grateful by nature. But one in ten had a clue and returned to fall at the feet of the Saviour and give proper thanks.

And that brings me to me. It brings us to us. How many "sinner's prayers" have we witnessed with so little reaction?

It would seem that, once the chains have been dropped, sins forgiven, eternities changed, soul diseases healed, that a greater percentage of (former) lepers would be in church to regularly thank God. It only seems right that many would return to the feet of the Saviour to offer their service. Yet, it we also have to wonder, where are the nine?

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