Summary: A sermon examining the miracles that happen when Jesus comes on the scene!
When Jesus Passes By
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George Jones' career began in the 1950's and for decades he enjoyed great success professionally. But it is well documented that he had great struggles personally. He suffered from alcoholism and a cocaine addiction. By February 1979 he was homeless, deranged, and destitute. He lived in his car and was in pitiful shape physically. In 1981, he met Nancy Sepulvado who would eventually become his wife. She had a very positive impact on Jones' life and career. She eventually cleaned up his finances, kept him away from his drug dealers and managed his career. George would be the first to tell you that Nancy changed and ultimately saved his life. But there was still something missing in his life.
In 1996 George had a tragic car accident, it took the first responders almost 2 hours to get him out. He was in a coma for over a week. When he woke up he asked to see Vestal Goodman who he had met several months earlier. Little did he know that Vestal had been praying for him... even before the accident. Vestal was instrumental in leading the country legend to faith in Jesus Christ. Until his death there was a visible difference in his life. But it wasn't because of Nancy or even Vestal, George's life was changed because HE MET JESUS!!
There are many occasions in the Gospels where Jesus passed by and lives were changed:
1. He passed through Cana an encountered a nobleman who's son was at the point of death... Jesus healed Him! (John 4:46-54)
2. He passed through Capernaum and encountered a leper...Jesus healed Him! (Mark 1:40-45)
3. He passed through Nain and encountered a widow who's son had died... Jesus brought him back to life! (Luke 7:11-17)
4. He passes through Galilee and encountered a deaf and dumb man who was possessed with demons... Jesus healed Him and cast out the demon! (Matthew 12:22-24)
5. He passed near Capernaum and encountered a woman with an issue of blood...Jesus healed Her! (Mark 5:22-24)
I could go on and on listing occasions where Jesus passed by and lives were changed forever. No matter how disastrous the circumstances or how devastating the situation, when Jesus comes on the scene EVERYTHING CHANGES!! We could take the rest of the day and allow each person to share their testimony of their conversion experience. And everyone would admit that everything changed for them, when Jesus come on the scene.
In our selected text we read about 10 men who suffered from leprosy. When Jesus came on the scene everything changed for these men. Jesus had compassion on them and healed them. And I am glad to tell you that Jesus is still changing lives today. Maybe you are here and you are suffering. You need healing... you need a life change. If this describes you then I invite you to join me as we consider the thought "When Jesus Passes By"
* Let's begin in verses 11-13 and examine:
I. THE CONDITION WHEN JESUS PASSED BY v11-13
As Jesus passed through Samaria and Galilee He entered a village where He met some men who were in bad shape. We are told that there were 10 of them. Let's examine their condition for a moment:
A. THEY WERE SICK - v12 "And as he entered into a certain village, there met him ten men that were lepers"
These men had a horrific disease. In fact their sickness was one of the worst in the history of the world. They were Lepers. Leprosy is a disease that begins with little white spots appearing on the skin. Those spots begin to harden and turn from white to pink to brown and become very scaly. Those sores then began to spread all over the body. They would afflict the face first; soon the appearance of the face would change. These sores would begin fill with puss and they would begin to run all over the body. There was a foul odor and others couldn't even stand to smell the odor. Leprosy began to totally consume one’s body. The eyebrows would fall out, and then the hair would turn white. A person with Leprosy is someone who is literally rotting away. Fingers would fall off and the toes of the feet would begin to fall off. Leprosy lasted an average of about 9 years until the victim would collapse and waste away.
Though this is a gruesome description of a physical disease, it is a great illustration of a spiritual disease. Leprosy paints a vivid picture of sin! And this paints a picture of the condition of these 10 men who met Jesus that day. Not only were these men sick, we also see that: