Summary: This sermon explains the importance of thankfulness.
Luke 17:11-19 Don’t Forget To Tell Him Thank You
By Rev. Ashton E. Alexander
There was a man who was well established that had vacationed to Jamaica for the summer. One afternoon after enjoying himself at the beach, he decided to grab a bit to eat from Burger King. After which, a seemingly homeless man had asked him for a meal. The well established man commenced by telling the deprived man that he had already eaten all of the food that he had purchased, but the homeless man assured the welthy gentlemen that the left overs were sufficient for him. Then the man ate all of the food that the wealthy man did not eat from the bag, and he GAVE THANKS TO HEAVEN. What a stirring demonstration of gratitude! The deprived man did not complain; rather, he gave thanks.
Although this might be something seemingly small to most, it reinforces how vitally important it is to be thankful. However, there are some who have received a great deal of considerable blessings from God and still want thank him for his unfailing faithfulness. We ought to thank God for his precious provisions, prevailing power, past performances, profound presence and perpetual promises, but we must avoid thinking that “thank you” exhausts our gratitude for the faithfulness and mercy of the Lord. As a matter of fact, the common employment of the term “thank you” is used as a gesture to express one’s gratitude. The stirring sentiments of the seasoned saints are that 10,000 tongues are not even enough to begin to thank the Lord for his guidance, governance, and goodness to His people.
To magnify the importance of thankfulness, the text shows us one who is gracious of the blessings of Jesus and nine that disregard his goodness. Each time I survey this text it appears to be perpetual pregnancy. Despite one’s familiarity of the text, the need to acquire a spirit of gratitude is always a profound truth the will continue to speak to the hearts of God’s people. Let us explore and examine the activity of the text.
Luke, an associate of Paul and a renowned physician of his time, is presented as the third gospel of the Jesus Christ in the New Testament. Historically, the book was purposefully written to address Theophilus. This writing is aimed at illustrating the complete authority of Jesus over all things and events. Hence, we see the number of miracles that Jesus performed. Being that Luke was a physician, he specifically tries to present Jesus as the Great Physician.
In this particular passage Jesus, on his way to Jerusalem, was going through the region between Samaria and Galilee, and as he entered a village, colony, of ten lepers, according to verse 11. Thus, we see the first condition of the next; namely, their constant misery (vs.12). The men were certainly in undesirable circumstances. The law had restricted the men from daily interactions with society. For Leviticus 13: 46 says, “The person who has the leprous disease shall wear torn clothed and let the hair of his head be disheveled.’’ The phrase of verse 12, “And they stood afar” emphasizes the restrictions the lepers endured under the law. It was unlawful for lepers towards there to come near health, according to rabbinic customs. Can imagine living a life independent from the general population?