Luke 17:11–19 (ESV) On the way to Jerusalem he was passing along between Samaria and Galilee. 12 And as he entered a village, he was met by ten lepers, who stood at a distance 13 and lifted up their voices, saying, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us.” 14 When he saw them he said to them, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went they were cleansed. 15 Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice; 16 and he fell on his face at Jesus’ feet, giving him thanks. Now he was a Samaritan. 17 Then Jesus answered, “Were not ten cleansed? Where are the nine? 18 Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” 19 And he said to him, “Rise and go your way; your faith has made you well.”
1. How easily entreated our Christ is – even from a distance. Even on His way to somewhere else and about other business. He is never too busy,, distracted, uncaring or indifferent. What an impetus to prayer. He was “on His way”, and He “was met” – and instantly responded. What a great Savior He is.
2. How merciful He is to those who call upon Him. He did not deny them their greatest need. He never does. He knows the ravages of sin. He knows how “infected” we are, how inherent, systemic and pervasive our sin problem is – how defiled we are. But He is full of mercy – FULL!
3. How broad His love is – He does not inquire as to whether all are Jews or IF there is a Samaritan or even a Gentile among them. Such things are irrelevant to Him in such an hour. He does not worry about whether or not they are card-carrying Jews, or all complete Gentiles. They are in need of what only He can do. His love stretches past the boundaries we so often point to.
4. How graciously He gives even to those who will fail to give Him His proper honor for His great works. He is not stupid. He knows their hearts – our hearts – as well as He knows His own. He knows full well nine of these men will just walk away – more absorbed by what it meant to them in the moment, than what it MEANT. But He is so full of grace. He gives to the undeserving. This is what the Gospel is all about. And He gives anyway. He knew full well how badly you and I would mess it up after He saved us. And He wasn’t deterred by it one iota. He is a God of grace.
5. How truly touched by Him we may be, and still have no true love or even gratitude toward Him. Our being the recipient of a miracle, does not mean we are necessarily better people for it. Just because He has been merciful to us – says nothing about – us. It says everything about Him. We can put no trust in miracles – only in Him. Miracles don’t change us – only He does.
6. How easy it is to be more content with the healing, than the Healer – with the gifts above the Giver. Father forgive me, for this is so very often my own heart and mind. Cleanse me of such wicked thought patterns. Make me never to rest content with anything you do – above having who you are. Let YOU, be my highest joy, and my most precious treasure.
7. Saving faith leads us beyond the obtaining of mere external blessings however great they may be – to be pronounced “whole” by the Redeemer. When we’ve gone beyond being “touched” – to the point of being “made well” – what a work is truly done. One that survives the grave. One that turns us into Sons and Daughters of God in Christ, and not just externally “blessed” – but unchanged. Make me that 10th leper.