Here in our text we find ten men who had been forced to leave their families, friends, jobs and hobbies. These men were forced to live on the outskirts of town because they have “leprosy”. Leprosy was a slowly progressive disease characterized by sores and scabs. This disease often caused deformity and the loss of sensation. Regardless to how good the person was who would be hurt or left without a father, mother, husband or wife; the leper would have to leave the city and wonder alone or with others in the same condition. Not only did this disease force them to live away from their families, but if someone was to approach the place where the leper was, the leper would have to call out “unclean” to let them know something was wrong.
My brothers and sisters, there are so many people who are in a similar situation to these lepers. No, they may not have a physical sickness, however, they may have made a bad decision or even said something wrong; now they are considered an outsider, misfit, outcast and a stranger, forced to wonder by themselves or find some people in a similar situation to hang out with. Often people who feel pushed to the side begin to believe there is no one who cares; no one who will even try to help them out of their situation. But I submit to you this morning my brothers and sisters, God is in the business of bringing people from where they are to where they need to be!
Note the text this morning. While these men were living as refugees, the text says that Jesus passed by. Is there anybody here this morning that is glad, that every now and then, Jesus will take the road that leads to you? Text says that while Jesus was passing through these men whom everyone had given up on and believed they were going to die like they were instantly saw their situation change because Jesus was there. These ten men must have heard how Jesus in Luke 5 has already healed a man with leprosy and how a man who was paralyzed was healed when his friends brought him to Jesus. These men must have heard how Jesus healed the main in Luke 6 with the withered hand. They must have heard how in Luke 7 Jesus healed the centurion’s servant and raised the Widow’s son at Nain. They must have heard how in Luke 8 Jesus healed a demon possessed man from the Gadareans; they must have heard about how woman who had an issue of blood twelve years was healed; they must have heard of how Jesus raised Jairus’ daughter from the dead. I don’t know what they heard, but whatever they heard that knew that Jesus, when he shows up, He can master any malady and Jesus can change any situation! Is there anybody here this morning who knows that things in your life may be messed up but when Jesus shows up, He can turn things around?
This must be the reason why these lepers took what strength they had left in them and called on Jesus! Text says in verse 13 they said, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us”. I want you to know this morning my brothers and sisters, you may be going through, but if you can get to Jesus, He can make everything alright!
These men did not pray for just anything, they prayed for Jesus to have mercy on them. Mercy in the Greek generally means to have compassion on a people or person in unhappy circumstances. Mercy does not imply merely a feeling of sympathy for the misfortunes of others, but an active desire to remove their misfortunes. What are you saying this morning Pastor Stanley? I’m glad you asked! They did not want Jesus to just feel bad about their situation, they wanted so HELP!
• David said in Psalm 121:1, 2 “1 I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. 2 My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.”
• Psalm 124:8 says, “Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.”
I may not be able to get to the altar, but if I can call on Jesus, He will make everything alright!
• Psalm 18:6 says, “In my distress I called upon the Lord, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears.”
• Psalm 34:15 says, “The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry.”
• Psalm 116:1, 2 says, “1 I love the Lord, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications. 2 Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live.”
I heard that saints singing in church, “Jesus is on the main line; call him up and tell him what you want. If you need your body healed tell him what you want!”
I want you to know this morning my brothers and sisters, when you pray to God for deliverance Jesus will work for you! After they called on the Lord in verse 14 Jesus looked around to see who was calling; when he saw who was calling, He not only looked at them, but He answered their prayer. In verse 14 of our text Jesus says, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” If these lepers would have stayed where they were; nothing would have happened. They could have stayed there and said, “What is wrong with Jesus, telling us to “Go” to the priest and he has not even cleaned us.” Instead these ten men started walking when Jesus said “Go”. The word “Go” is in the aorist participle, which means it was a simple action: and that simple action was FAITH!
• Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
My brothers and sister, there all many different types of faith there is:
1. Ineffective Faith: this type of faith tries to anticipate God’s plan and when things do not happen fast enough the person with this type of faith often tries to make the way themselves. Ineffective faith is normally found in people with lip service only; those who do not plan on changing, just playing the part.
2. Weak faith: this type of faith usually cannot stand the test of time. People with this faith start out strong, however when the storm comes they fall off.
3. Effective Faith: This type of faith depends totally on God. The person with this type of faith does not have to see, they just believe.
I don’t know about you, but I’m like these ten lepers; I may not be able to see what God is doing right now, but I am going to keep on walking, because:
• 2 Corinthians 5:7 says, “(For we walk by faith, not by sight:)”
• Habakkuk 2:4 says, “The just shall live by faith.”
Is there anybody here this morning who has determined that they will keep on walking?
Finally, verse 14 of our text say, “as they went they were cleansed”. The phrase “were cleansed” in the Greek is καθαρίζω which means to purify, free from filth, make clean. The moment these men stepped out on faith the problem they had in verse 11 was gone. What are you saying Pastor? My brothers and sisters if you are to get rid of what’s holding you and making you and outcast you have to start walking. Whatever problem you have in your life, you need to start walking. The text says, while they were walking one of the lepers looked down and saw he was healed, and he immediately turned around and began to praise God for what he had happened in his life. I don’t know how long these men walked before they were healed; I don’t know if they could feel their disease slowly leaving, but what I do know is when this man realized he was healed he began to run back and give thanks for what had happened in his life. My brothers and sisters, you should not let too much time go by before you give God praise! Is there anybody here this morning who is not ashamed to say that you are here because the Lord has been good to you?
• Psalm 150:6 says, “Let every thing that hath breath praise the Lord. Praise ye the Lord.”
• Psalm 107:2 says, “Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy.”
• Psalm 34:1 says, “I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.”
Is there anybody here this morning who’s not ashamed to say, God is:
• My way out of no way
• The lily of the valley
• Bright in the morning star
• Alpha and omega
• King of Kings
• Lord of Lords
• The great I am
• The Lion in the Tribe of Judah
• Doctor in a sick room
• Bridge over your troubled waters
• Midnight rider
AIN’T HE ALRIGHT!