Are the Nine?
When Jesus enters a village on the way to
Jerusalem in Luke 17:11-19, ten lepers shout at Him from a distance,
"Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!" Jesus tells them to show
themselves to the local priests, who have the legal authority to pronounce
And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were
cleansed. And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back,
and with a loud voice glorified God, and fell down on his face at his
feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan. And Jesus answering said,
Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine? There are not found
that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger. And he said unto
him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole.
Jesus spoke wholeness
I’ve used the King James Version of this
Scripture because it throws an interesting light on the Greek words for
what happens to the lepers. Nine are cleansed (katharizo);
the tenth is healed (iaomai); and finally this
grateful Samaritan is made whole (sozo)—the
same word used to describe the healing of the bleeding woman in the fifth
chapter of Mark.
As I see it, nine of the lepers got what we call a
cure—a "miracle healing," in modern terms. The
tenth got the same cure at first, then wholeness, when he
came back to begin a genuine relationship with Jesus. And I have no doubt
that this tenth leper got every part of his life permanently repaired when
Jesus spoke wholeness into him.
to God in a pinch
Dear ones, I’ve been praying for people’s
healing for most of four decades, and it still breaks my heart when
desperate people come to me for prayers that work, but want just a quick
fix instead of getting to know the "fixer." The sad truth is
that only a small fraction of prayers for "miracle healing" are
successful, and only a fraction of those healings last indefinitely—not
because God is stingy with His power, but because the recipient has no
clue that his healing might have some connection with the way he relates
to the Lord.
Can we agree that there’s a difference between
(a) turning to God in a pinch and (b) having a relationship of trust and
obedience with him? True, in His mercy the Lord may come up with a quick
fix for something that ails us—if the cure doesn’t
prolong our spiritual immaturity or reward our disobedience (always a big
"if"). But what then? How can we count on keeping
our "fix" unless we’re living in a way that’s pleasing to
Have a healing
We don’t know the ultimate fate of the
lepers who walked away from Jesus, but it may well have been the same as
that of any nine sufferers who receive a miraculous healing
and go back to business as usual. Chances are they’ll soon be anguishing
over fresh symptoms and shopping for fresh miracles.
Far better, I’d say, to have a healing
relationship with the Healer.
forget that . . .
God should be our first
resort, not our last resort. Start taking time right now
to build up the faith you need to receive His healing.
God is ready to heal us
way--spiritually, physically, emotionally, and mentally.
God heals all
types of disease, pain, sorrow, and infirmity.
Nothing is too hard for Him.
us to be healed, to be "whole" persons
enjoying abundant life.
God expects us to cooperate
with Him in getting healed--through medicine, diet,
exercise, and straight thinking. Everything that promotes
healing is a gift from Him.
Healing Briefs here