Text: “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto Me in Heaven and in earth.”
Good morning, weak, sickly,
bereaved, and despairing Christian! If
any of these words describe you and I today – there is good news in this
morning’s Marching In Mark’s Gospel for us. Read
on, and receive extra faith and grace to continue in the service of Christ
The Healing of the Leper: (Vs.40-45) Leprosy was one of the most feared
diseases to contract in Gospel times. If
one caught this deadly illness, one could neither hope to live, or live-in
community with other people – the leper was a complete outcast, contagious with
disease, and condemned as ‘religiously and socially UNCLEAN’. This is the man that came to King Jesus
Christ to ‘worship’ Him, saying, “Lord, if Thou wilt, Thou canst make me
Use your ‘sanctified
imagination’ for a moment, beloved Reader – SEE the scene set before us here;
FEEL the hopelessness of this wretched man; EXPERIENCE to some degree, the
impossibility of his pathetic request of the Lord God.
Now, SEE, FEEL, and
EXPERIENCE the power and ecstatic joy of the Master’s response and answer to
the leper’s plea: “And Jesus, moved with compassion, put forth His hand, and
touched him (unthinkable action!), and saith unto him, I will: be thou clean.”
“And as soon as He had
spoken, immediately the leprosy departed from him, and he was cleansed.” (V.42)
Hallelujah! The power of Almighty Jesus!
J.C. Ryle Comments:
try to realize, in the first place, the dreadful nature of the disease
which Jesus cured.
“Leprosy is a complaint
of which we know little or nothing in our northern climate. In Bible lands it
is far more common. It is a disease which is utterly incurable. It is no mere
skin affection, as some ignorantly suppose. It is a radical disease of the whole
man. It attacks, not merely the skin, but the blood, the flesh, and the bones,
until the unhappy patient begins to lose his extremities, and to rot by inches.
—Let us remember beside this, that, amongst the Jews, the leper was reckoned
unclean, and was cut off from the congregation of Israel and the ordinances of
religion. He was obliged to dwell in a separate house. None might touch him or
minister to him. Let us remember all this, and then we may have some idea of
the remarkable wretchedness of a leprous person. To use the words of Aaron,
when he interceded for Miriam, she was “as one dead, of whom the flesh is half
consumed.” (Numbers 12:12)
Leper’s Approach: Let us note first the attitude of worship,
and the sincere words of this poor leper, for they are vital to his receiving
any healing or compassion from the Lord.
First of all, we clearly see the leper’s attitude of reverence and
worship, as, beseeching Christ, he came, “…kneeling down to Him, and saying
unto Him, If Thou wilt, Thou canst make me clean.” (V.40)
Leper’s Faith: His reverence to Christ Jesus, evidenced in
his humbled attitude, was mixed with that powerful ingredient of FAITH, the
free gift of God’s grace to ‘His people’; a gift without which no one can be
saved; and no one can ever hope to have anything of miraculous content from the
Living Lord God.
“Now, faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of
things not seen…But without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that
cometh to God must believe that He is (exists!), and that He is a rewarder of
them that diligently seek Him.” (Hebrews 11:1; 6)
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of
yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should
boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9)
J.C. Ryle Comments:
“Let us learn, in the
second place, from these verses, the wondrous and almighty power of the
Lord Jesus Christ.
told that the unhappy leper came to our Lord, “beseeching Him, and kneeling
down,” and saying, “If thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.” We are told that
Jesus, moved with compassion, put forth his hand and touched him, and said to
him, “I will, be thou clean.” At once the cure was affected. That very instant
the deadly plague departed from the poor sufferer, and he was healed. It is but
a word, and a touch, and there stands before our Lord, not a leper, but a sound
and healthy man.
“Who can conceive the
greatness of the change in the feelings of this leper, when he found himself
healed? The morning sun rose upon him, a miserable being, more dead than alive,
his whole frame a mass of sores and corruption, his very existence a burden.
The evening sun saw him full of hope and joy, free from pain, and fit for the
society of his fellow-men. Surely the change must have been like life from the
dead.” (J.C. Ryle’s Expository Thoughts on the
this Divine manifestation of the Almighty power of Christ Jesus, we find what,
in my humble and personal opinion, was a task given the cleansed leper that I
personally would find impossible to obey.
The Lord Jesus said unto him: “See that thou say nothing to any man…”,
concerning the miracle performed upon him.
Can you imagine it, Reader?
Trying for a moment to keep quiet about such a life-changing event? Can you and I level blame at this poor healed
man for immediately, “…blazing abroad the matter…”?
Thought: If men and
women getting saved by Christ today would only be as instant in, “…publishing
it much…” to the greater glory of our beloved Saviour, Jesus Christ.