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Faith Filled Friday: The Leper’s Healing

July 15, 2022

by Nancy Chapman | 7/15/2022

“Oh, no!” the man cried in horror as he looked at the small white spot on his skin. “It can’t be! I must be mistaken.” But he knew in his heart it was leprosy. Fear and dread overcame him. He knew all too well what having leprosy meant. He would have to leave his home and those he loved and isolate himself from all of society. He would be totally rejected – his only companions would be other lepers.

And that was just the beginning. He knew the disease would cause terrible disfigurement. His arms and legs would become twisted; his fingers would curl up; his ears would thicken and fall off; his nose would collapse; tumors would cover his skin; his nerve endings would be destroyed. No nerve endings meant he could not feel pain, which meant he could hurt himself and never know it. He had heard of lepers who had their fingers and toes chewed off by rats because they did not feel the pain. Eventually, he would lose his fingers, toes, and even his limbs. He knew contracting leprosy was a living hell.

When the man left home, his family knew he would never be back. They wept uncontrollably. He held up for their sake as best he could, but as soon as he was out of their sight, sobs racked his entire body as he gave into his grief. Sorrowfully, he made his way outside the city limits to where other lepers lived in crude shelters. Life as he knew it was over. Slowly but surely, leprosy began to take over his entire body. Death would be a welcome release from his misery and heartache.

But wait! What had he heard about a man called Jesus? Before, he had not paid much attention, thinking he was just another fanatic claiming to be the Promised Messiah. But now, he remembered that Jesus had claimed to be the very Son of God – and had preached powerfully in the synagogues. Had he really changed water into wine at a wedding in Cana? Someone told him one evening that Jesus had healed many, even casting out demons. He found it hard to believe, but now, in his utter desperation, the man began to think differently. Maybe it was more than idle talk and wishful thinking. Could Jesus really be who He claimed to be?

As the man lay on his filthy mat and tried to sleep, he thought about it, and a flicker of hope began to grow in his tortured heart. Surely, so many people could not be wrong. If Jesus could heal so many sick bodies and minds, why couldn’t he heal leprosy? He debated whether or not he dared to approach Jesus and ask for healing. Would Jesus care about someone so disfigured and ugly and ravaged by this loathsome disease? Then there was the problem of people. If he got too close, he could be stoned. Did that matter since he was going to die anyway?

Back and forth, back and forth, the possibilities flashed through his mind. Finally, he made a decision. He would go to Jesus by faith, trusting that He would have mercy and restore his diseased body. By now, he was “full of leprosy” and in the last stages. (Luke 5:12)

As He always does, Jesus responded to the man’s faith and earnest cry. “And he put forth His hand and touched him, saying, “I will, be thou clean.” And immediately the leprosy departed from him. (Luke 5:13)

Wonder of wonders! Awe filled the healed man’s heart. He could hardly believe what had happened. He was clean, cured, with all traces of leprosy gone! Words were inadequate; all the man could do was weep in gratitude.

Then Jesus gave him a command, “Go, shew thyself to the priest and offer for the cleansing according as Moses commanded for a testimony unto them.” (Luke 5:13-14)

When he could finally find words, the man thanked Jesus over and over again. Then he hurried to the priest so he could ceremonially be declared clean. Then home! As fast as his legs could carry him, he made his way home. He could not wait to throw his arms around his family and tell them what had happened. They wouldn’t believe it. Yet they would because they would see the proof standing before them!

In Bible times, without a miracle, leprosy was incurable. As such, it is a type/picture of sin. Even though you saw it on the OUTSIDE, the real problem with leprosy was INSIDE. The sores and other problems were only symptoms of the disease. In the same way, our acts of sin are merely symptoms of the bigger problem inside. Sin comes from the heart (Matthew 15:19). Leprosy separated lepers from the presence of God. It made them ceremonially unclean or unfit to go to the temple where God manifested His presence. Sin separates men and women from God. He is infinitely holy and the UNSAVED can have no fellowship with Him. Their sin bars the way into His presence.

The leper would die a slow, agonizing PHYSICAL death. The sinner will die an ETERNAL DEATH. The leper would suffer until he died. The unsaved will suffer FOREVER, banished from the presence of God and everything good. When an unsaved person dies, just like the rich man in Luke 16:22-23, he drops immediately into Hell. Later, he will appear before the Great White Throne judgment and be “cast into the Lake of Fire” (Revelations 20:15). Who will be there? “The fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murders, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, all liars shall have their part in the Lake of Fire and brimstone; which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8).

Scary, serious stuff! There is only one way to keep from going there – coming to Jesus Christ, just like the leper did. Jesus is waiting to receive sinners who turn from sin and open their hearts to receive Him by faith. “Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord SHALL be saved” (Romans 10:13).

“Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou SHALT be saved” (Acts 16:31).

As I’ve said many times, salvation is as easy as ABC:

A – “All have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23)

B – “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.” (Acts 16:31)

C – “Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord, shall be saved.” (Romans 10:13)

Lots of love and prayers,

Nancy

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