Luke 17:11-19 records a story of the miraculous healing of ten lepers – and the curious (but common) response of nine of them. As you read this story, you should be asking yourself: “Am I thankful for the blessings God has given me?”
God has given you the opportunity to be saved through Jesus Christ (Titus 2:11). This spiritual healing is infinitely more significant than the healing of leprosy (even though leprosy was one of the worst diseases in human history). Still, God desires for His grace to impact your life in a meaningful way – leading you to give your life to His service (see Titus 2:11-14)!
So, as you read the story of the ten lepers who were healed by Jesus, evaluate whether you are like the nine unthankful lepers or whether you are like the one thankful leper regarding the spiritual healing God has provided to you through Jesus Christ!
Nine Unthankful Lepers
Quick to beg for help; quick to forget. When these nine lepers were mired in their pain and suffering, they realized their great need for Jesus to heal them. So, they lifted up their voices to cry out to Jesus: “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!” Yet, while they were quick to beg Jesus’ mercy, they were also quick to forget his mercy!
What about you? When you are in your sins and need to experience the spiritual healing through Christ’s mercy, are you quick to beg for his mercy? However, after you have received His mercy, are you quick to forget His mercy and sin again?
Did enough to feel better; but not motivated to greater service. These nine lepers desperately desired for their leprosy to be healed – and they did what Jesus instructed them to do (i.e. show themselves to the priests). However, once they felt better, they did not use Jesus’ mercy to motivate them to greater service.
What about you? Will you do enough so that you can feel better about the past sin that you have committed (i.e. be baptized) – but then not allow Christ’s mercy to motivate you to change your life and give yourself entirely to Him?
One Thankful Leper
Didn’t forget what Jesus had done. One of the ten lepers, after he was healed, returned to find Jesus and gave Him thanks. His leprosy was gone. But, he did not forget that his new life was entirely due to the Lord’s healing.
What about you? When you come to Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, do you give Him thanks? When the stain from your sin is removed, do you still recognize that you are only pure because Jesus died for you?
Glorified God with a loud voice. It is interesting to me that all ten of the lepers lifted their voice to Jesus for healing; but, only this one leper lifted His voice in praise to God after they were cleansed. He recognized that the Lord was worthy of all praise and adoration and used his new life to glorify the God who healed him.
What about you? Do you lift up your voice in praise to God? Do you use your newness of life to glorify God in everything that you do? Do you tell others about the one who loved you and gave His life for you so that you could be saved?
Are you thankful? Perhaps you read this account of the lepers’ healing and think, “How ungrateful could they be?” However, you must evaluate your own life to see whether you are being just like those nine ungrateful lepers or whether you are like the one who returned to thank and glorify God!