Summary: The Samaritan had a lot incommon with the Jewish lepers, but he was uncommonly thankful.
Turn to Luke 17 :11-19 (while you are turning)
“Rudyard Kipling lived from 1865 to 1936. He was English, yet born in Bombay, India. He wrote poetry and is the author of books like Captain Courageous, How the Leopard Got His Spots, and The Jungle Books.
Kipling’s writings not only made him famous but also brought him a fortune. A newspaper reporter came up to him once and said, "Mr. Kipling, I just read that somebody calculated that the money you make from your writings amounts to over one hundred dollars a word.”
The reporter reached into his pocket and pulled out a one hundred-dollar bill and gave it to Kipling and said, “Here’s a one hundred dollar bill, Mr. Kipling. Now you give me one of your hundred dollar words.”
Rudyard Kipling looked at the money, put it in his pocket and said, "Thanks!"
The word "thanks" is certainly a one hundred dollar word.
It’s a small word but it has a powerful meaning. It might only have 6 letters but it gets across a message that few other words are capable of achieving.
you feel hurt, used, ignored, and taken for granted and you wonder why you bothered to do something for the person in the first place.
The subject of this message, obviously, is “Thankfulness.”
-Lets examine what the Bible has to say about a case of thankfulness.
Luke 17 :11-19
“11 Now on his way to Jerusalem, Jesus traveled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. 12 As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy met him. They stood at a distance 13 and called out in a loud voice, "Jesus, Master, have pity on us!" 14 When he saw them, he said, "Go, show yourselves to the priests." And as they went, they were cleansed. 15 One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. 16 He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him--and he was a Samaritan. 17 Jesus asked, "Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? 18 Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?" 19 Then he said to him, "Rise and go; your faith has made you well."
1) Some important things in this passage that we could easily overlook.
a. (v.s. 11) Jesus was traveling along the boarder of Galilee and Samaria.
b. Jesus conducted much of His ministry in this area.
- He had a reputation here.
c. Jesus expresses concern (v.s. 18) “was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner (Samaritan)?”
2) Differences between the Jews and the Samaritans.
I will not spend long today pointing out the differences between Jews and Samaritans because many of you have already heard of them. Let me Just remind you of a couple.
· Jews & Samaritans hated each other
· Samaritans were considered pagan half-breeds
· Jews would go to great lengths to bypass Samaria on a Journey
· Even thought they had common roots in their heritage they preferred to feel as if they had nothing in common.
3) Some things brought these 9 Jews and 1 Samaritan together.
What was it?
a. Their common affliction.
Leprosy was the most feared illness in that time. The term “leprosy,” as used in the Bible, referred to a wide variety of infectious skin rashes, scales, sores, or eruptions, not just clinical leprosy as we know it today.
ii. v.s. 12 tells us that these 10 lepers “stood at a distance”
They had to stand at a distance from Jesus. They were not allowed to come near anybody. They had to keep a distance of a minimum of six feet from other people including their family members. Furthermore, lepers were not allowed to live within the walls of any city. They were cast out and completely avoided by everyone.
“As for the leper who has the infection, his clothes shall be torn, and the hair of his head shall be uncovered, and he shall cover his mustache and cry, “Unclean! Unclean!” He shall remain unclean all the days during which he has the infection; he is unclean. He shall live alone; his dwelling shall be outside the camp.” (Lev 13:45-46)
*They suffered together in the agony of their affliction
b. Their common need for mercy.
(They) called out in a loud voice, "Jesus, Master, have pity (mercy) on us!" (v.s. 13)
· There was no known treatment for their disease.
· The Jews saw this disease as a curse from God. – Though he Scripture never states that leprosy is always a curse from God.
· Mercy means – “not getting what you deserve.”
· They knew that if this rabbi Jesus had pity on them and healed them they would not be getting what they deserve.