Summary: These is sermon 1 in a series of sermons on moments with Master, as Jesus teaches us crucial life lessons. This sermon deals with the need of the transforming touch of Jesus.
Moments with the Master Series
Series Introduction: As one reads the Gospels; it quickly becomes apparent that the earthly ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ was a people centered ministry. There are two verses that declare, in detail, our Lord’s mission statement. 1.) Luke 19:10, “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” 2.) Mark 10:45, “For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.”
Obviously, Jesus came into this world with the cross of Calvary in His heart and on His mind. He was literally born to die! The passage in Mark 10:45 does tells us that Jesus came to “give His life as a ransom for many”, but it also tells us that He came to this earth “to minister”. This word literally means “to serve”.
This attitude of service is seen time and again in the personal encounters Jesus had while He walked in this world. Over the next several Sunday mornings, I would like to take a closer look at a few of the personal encounters of Jesus, as they are recorded in the Gospels. So, today, I want to begin a new series entitled “Moments with the Master”. I want you to see that moments spent with Jesus are powerful, life changing moments. As we observe Jesus and His interactions with the people of His day, we will see how He will interact with anyone who will take the time to spend time with Him.
A TRANSFORMING MOMENT
This passage finds the Lord Jesus in the midst of a tiring and trying preaching campaign. We are told in verses 21-34 that just the day before, Jesus had taught in the synagogue, vv. 21-22; cast out a demon, vv. 23-28; healed Simon Peter’s mother-in-law, vv. 29-31; and healed many sick folks and delivered others from demonic possession, vv. 32-34.
You would think that Jesus might need a period of rest after such a frenzied schedule. However, v. 35 finds Jesus up and in the place of prayer well before daylight. When His disciples find Him, He tells them it is time to go into the neighboring cities to preach, for that was the reason He came to the world.
In the midst of His preaching and teaching ministry in Capernaum, He is interrupted by a single man, a leper. It is this personal encounter that I want to focus in on this morning. While there were great crowds there to be healed, helped and taught, one man managed to get a Moment with the Master. Let’s look in on this scene and witness for ourselves A Transforming Moment.
I. THE CONDITION OF THE LEPER (v. 40)
A. His Disease
• We are told that this man, who approached the Lord Jesus, was a leper.
o Of all the diseases and afflictions that devastated the ancient world, none was more feared than leprosy.
o When it was determined that a man had leprosy they would banish him from the village, he was no longer allowed to have communion with other people.
He had to leave his family; he had to leave his friends.
o It was unlawful for a leper to approach within 50 feet of a clean person.
If it was a windy day, the rule changed to 200 feet.
o He could not touch his family; he could only see them from a distance.
o Many families brought food and clothing for a while, but after a time, most families had a funeral service and regarded the afflicted person as a dead.
He had to tear his garments so people would recognize that he was a leper.
He was to dress as a mourner going to a funeral service: his own funeral service!
o Every time he saw people coming the leper was required, from a distance, to cry, "Unclean! Unclean! Unclean!", and it would warn the people that a leper was on the premises.
• This is a horrible image, and some may say, “Preacher, no one here has leprosy. Why do we need to hear this?”
o Simply this: In the bible, leprosy is far more than a disease.
o It is also a type of sin!
o While no one in this room may be a leper, everyone in this room has problems with sin!
o And, of all the diseases mentioned in the Bible, none pictures sin any more clearly that does the disease called leprosy.
• In Leviticus 13, we are given the regulations for diagnosing and dealing with leprosy.
o Allow me to point out a few similarities between leprosy and sin.
1. Leprosy is deeper than the skin - Lev. 13:3