Summary: When Jesus healed the 10 lepers, there were 3 things that happened in the process.
Ten Healed of Leprosy
Verse 11- “As Jesus continued on toward Jerusalem, he reached the border between Galilee and Samaria. 12As he entered a village there, ten lepers stood at a distance, 13crying out, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!”
Lepers- In the Bible, the word leprosy is mentioned upwards of 40 times, depending on the Bible version being used. Leprosy was common in Bible times, and the many references to it were well understood by those who lived in unsanitary conditions.
God had given the Israelites very specific instructions on how to deal with leprosy and other skin infections (Leviticus 13). Anyone suspected of having this disease had to go to a priest for examination (Leviticus 13:2-3). If found to be infected, “the leprous person who has the disease shall wear torn clothes and let the hair of his head hang loose, and he shall cover his upper lip and cry out, ‘Unclean, unclean.’ He shall remain unclean as long as he has the disease. He is unclean. He shall live alone. His dwelling shall be outside the camp” (Leviticus 13:45-46). The leper then was considered utterly unclean—physically and spiritually.
Incurable by man, many believed God inflicted the curse of leprosy upon people for the sins they committed. In fact, those with leprosy were so despised and loathed that they were not allowed to live in any community with their own people (Numbers 5:2). Among the sixty-one defilements of ancient Jewish laws, leprosy was second only to a dead body in seriousness. A leper wasn’t allowed to come within six feet of any other human, including his own family. The disease was considered so revolting that the leper wasn’t permitted to come within 150 feet of anyone when the wind was blowing. Lepers lived in a community with other lepers until they either got better or died. (that’s probably the reason there were 10 together)
1. God wants us to “Cry Out” to Him for healing and restoration.
They were crying out, yelling out loud. Not embarrassed, but desperate to ask God for something.
They were asking God to have Mercy on them. They wanted Jesus to change them and to heal them from this terrible disease.
God knows our heart and when we express to him our cry, our sincere heart, our true wishes and requests, he listens to us.
Verse14 - “He looked at them and said, “Go show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed of their leprosy.”
Why did Jesus ask the Lepers to “go show yourselves to the priests”? He was following the law set in the book of Leviticus. Here is what the Old Testament has to say what someone with Leprosy must do:
Lev 14:2-12 “And the Lord said to Moses, 2“The following instructions are for those seeking ceremonial purification from a skin disease. Those who have been healed must be brought to the priest, 3who will examine them at a place outside the camp. If the priest finds that someone has been healed of a serious skin disease, 4he will perform a purification ceremony, using two live birds that are ceremonially clean, a stick of cedar, some scarlet yarn, and a hyssop branch. 5The priest will order that one bird be slaughtered over a clay pot filled with fresh water. 6He will take the live bird, the cedar stick, the scarlet yarn, and the hyssop branch, and dip them into the blood of the bird that was slaughtered over the fresh water. 7The priest will then sprinkle the blood of the dead bird seven times on the person being purified of the skin disease. When the priest has purified the person, he will release the live bird in the open field to fly away.8“The persons being purified must then wash their clothes, shave off all their hair, and bathe themselves in water. Then they will be ceremonially clean and may return to the camp. However, they must remain outside their tents for seven days. 9On the seventh day they must again shave all the hair from their heads, including the hair of the beard and eyebrows. They must also wash their clothes and bathe themselves in water. Then they will be ceremonially clean.10“On the eighth day each person being purified must bring two male lambs and a one-year-old female lamb, all with no defects, along with a grain offering of six quarts of choice flour moistened with olive oil, and a cup of olive oil. 11Then the officiating priest will present that person for purification, along with the offerings, before the Lord at the entrance of the Tabernacle. 12The priest will take one of the male lambs and the olive oil and present them as a guilt offering, lifting them up as a special offering before the Lord.”