Summary: This sermon deals with Jesus healing the 10 lepersm and the attitude of the one who returned.
JUNE 25, 2006
11Now on his way to Jerusalem, Jesus traveled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. 12As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy met him. They stood at a distance 13and called out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!”
14When he saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed.
15One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. 16He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him—and he was a Samaritan.
17Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? 18Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” 19Then he said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”
HOW OFTEN ARE YOU THANKFUL? ARE YOU THANKFUL IN ALL THINGS? STOP AND THINK ABOUT THE WEEK THAT JUST ENDED, NOW STOP AND THINK ABOUT THE THINGS THAT WENT WRONG LAST WEEK. DID YOU GIVE THANKS IN ALL THOSE THINGS? IF YOU ARE LIKE ME, I CAN GUARENTEE YOU, THAT THERE WERE SOME THINGS THAT CAME UP LAST WEEK THAT YOU WERENT REALLY EXCITED ABOUT. AN UNEXPECTED CAR REPAIR, A BILL THAT YOU THOUGHT YOU HAD TAKEN CARE OF. AN ILLNESS OF SOMEONE YOU CARE ABOUT. EVERY ONE OF US HAD SOMETHING THAT MADE US STOP AND QUESTION, IF ONLY FOR A MOMENT. DID YOU GIVE THANKS?
TODAY, I WANT US TO CONSIDER A MAN WHO SAID THANK YOU. AS WE CONSIDER THIS MAN, WE WILL QUICKLY COME TO THE REALIZATION, THAT WE HAVE A LOT IN COMMON WITH HIM. AND FURTHER, WE WILL REALIZE THAT GOD SAID TO GIVE THANKS IN ALL THINGS.
SET THE SCENE. JESUS IS TRAVELING TO JERUSALEM. HE IS ON THE BORDER OF SAMARIA AND GALILEE. REMEMBER, AS WE TALKED BEFORE, THE JEWS LOOK DOWN THEIR NOSES ON THE SAMARITANS, AND HE IS IN THE PLACE WHERE THE TWO COME TOGETHER, AND OFTEN CLASH. AS HE ENTERS A VILLAGE, HE IS INTERUPTED. NOW REMEMBER, ALL OF JESUS MINISTRY IS INTENTIONAL. THIS IS A DIVINE APPOINTMENT FOR THESE MEN.
FIRST THING TO NOTICE, THEY ARE OUTSIDE. THEY ARE NOT PART OF THE GROUP, THEY ARE OUTSIDE LOOKING IN. DO YOU REMEMBER THAT FEELING? MAYBE IT WAS ON THE PLAYGROUND WHEN WE PICKED TEAMS. I CHOOSE SO AND SO, AND YOU ARE THE LAST ONE PICKED. MAYBE IT WAS WHEN EVERYONE ELSE WENT TO THE DANCE, AND YOU STAYED HOME ALONE. WE ALL HAVE OUR MEMORIES OF BEING LEFT OUT.
THESE GUYS ARE OUTSIDE LOOKING IN, NOT BY CHOICE BUT BY LAW. THEY HAD A SERIOUS SKIN DISEASE, LEPROSY. THEY WERE UNCLEAN. LAW DID NOT ALLOW THEM ALLOWED CONTACT WITH OTHER PEOPLE. THEY COULD NOT COME ANY CLOSER THAN 6 FEET. THEY HAD TO WARN PEOPLE THAT THEY WERE NEAR, THEY DID SO BY SHOUTING UNCLEAN, UNCLEAN. THE ONLY PLACE THEY COULD LIVE, WAS WITH OTHER LEPERS. THEY WERE AT THE MERCY OF THOSE WHO WOULD LEAVE THEM SCRAPS OF FOOD.
THIS DISEASE AFFECTS THE NERVE ENDINGS, SO THEY COULDN’T TELL IF THEY HAD CUT THEMSELVES, OR IF A RAT HAD EATEN PART OF THEM IN THE NIGHT. THEY WERE LIVING A DEATH SENTENCE, AND BEING SHUT OUT AT THE SAME TIME.
AS SINNERS, WE ARE IN THE SAME SITUATION AS THEY WERE. WE ARE OUTSIDE LOOKING IN. WE ARE CUT OFF. WE HAVE NO ACCESS TO GOD, WE ARE THE LEPERS.