The Leper and Jesus

Scripture: Mk 1:40-41, ‘A man with leprosy came to him and begged him on his knees, “If you are willing, you can make me clean.” Filled with compassion, Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!”’

 

Observations: In our Small Group last night we were encouraged to picture ourselves in the biblical stories. As the leper what I would’ve most wanted was to be healed. But it was more than healing, it was being cleansed of the stigma that went with leprosy, it was to know that God loved me, it was to be restored to my family and society. And Jesus is the answer, Jesus is able to do it. As Jesus, I didn’t see the sores and I wasn’t afraid of the stigma, instead I was filled with compassion – I saw the person, I saw his desperation. I wanted him to know that God loved him. I wanted to bless him, and I knew that God wanted the same thing, and so in faith I reached out my hand and touched the man and cleansed him. My hope was that in cleansing him of leprosy he would desire to be cleansed of his sin.

 

Application: Like the leper I need to turn to Jesus for healing and wholeness. Only Jesus can cleanse me from the sin in my life. Only Jesus can reconcile me with God and with other people. Like Jesus I need to know how much God loves broken and sinful people like me, and how willing he is to reach out his hand and touch my life, and the lives of others, and bring cleansing and wholeness. Like Jesus I need to reach out to other people and let them know how much God loves them.

 

Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, I thank You that in Your word I find stories that speak of healing and Your great love for people. And Lord, I thank You that such stories bring me hope, that like a leper was cleansed so You cleansed me through Jesus Christ. But Lord, such stories also challenge me to be like Jesus, to reach out to broken and lonely and lost people with Your love. Lord, may Your power work through my life as it worked through the life of Your Son. Use me to touch the lives of others that they may know Your love and find forgiveness and healing. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

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