Luke 17:17 And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine?
One of the things that I really dislike is an unthankful spirit. No one likes an unthankful person. When someone does something nice for me, I would rather thank them numerous times than forget to thank them! I remember asking one of our men to drive the bus for a church activity, after he did, I kept thanking him, and he nicely told me that once is enough.
This familiar story in Luke 17 is about the ten lepers that came to Jesus hoping to get healed of their disease. By law they were not allowed to be with society because they might infect others with their disease. When they heard that Jesus was coming, they all met Him from a distance, hoping that He would heal them. After Jesus healed the ten lepers only one came back to thank Him and Jesus asked the question, “Where are the nine?”
As we are heading towards the Thanksgiving week, it would be a good reminder for all of us to examine our hearts to see if we have the same attitude as the one that came back to thank Jesus or if we have become like the nine.
Here are a few questions to ask ourselves:
Leprosy in the Bible is a picture of sin. And just like when Jesus healed the ten lepers, only Jesus can cleanse and forgive our sins.
Luke 5:24 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power upon earth to forgive sins
1 John 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.
The longer we live the Christian life, if we are not careful, the easier it is to forget where God has saved us out from! We were in bondage of sin and because of it, we’re living a miserable life. God provided salvation through the Lord Jesus Christ so that we can be cleansed and forgiven of our sins, and because of that we are now heaven bound! A good question to ask ourselves is this, how often do we think about our salvation? When was the last time we thanked Jesus Christ for dying on the cross for us?
Luke 17:14 And when he saw them, he said unto them, Go shew yourselves unto the priests. And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were cleansed.
Because of their leprosy, they were outcasts. But after they were healed, they could now enjoy the benefits of their society.
Coming here to America from another country, I often see the difference between the attitudes of people who were born here and those from a third-world country. Some of the best Christians that you will meet are living in poverty-stricken countries. One pastor that went to visit Asia made a comment after seeing and meeting the Christians there in that country, he said, “How can they be so happy knowing that they don’t have anything?” He goes on to say, “Because they have Jesus!” Let us ask ourselves this same question, with all the abundance and prosperity that the Lord has allowed us to have, “Are we really thankful for ALL the blessings we are enjoying today?”
The Bible says in Psalm 68:19 “Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah.” This is a sad truth that cannot be denied, it seems like the more we have, the less thankful we’ve become!
Luke 17:15-18 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.
Ten were healed, but why is it that only one came back to thank Him? I think we can find the answer on verse 18: “And one of them, when he saw that he was healed…” This Samaritan after seeing that he was healed, realized he was not an outcast anymore! He could now be with his wife, maybe with his children and his family. He could once again fellowship with his church, friends, and community. In his mind, he probably couldn’t stop counting his blessings; no wonder he turned back and with a loud voice glorified God!
Even though the year 2020 was not what were are all expecting it to be, God has proven Himself to each one of us individually and our church as a whole. He is still gracious, merciful, and His goodness is beyond what we all deserved! There will always be something to complain about, but if we would just stop and think, there is so much more to be thankful for!
How’s our attitude today? Are we counting our blessings or have we become like the nine?
Life is not made up of the things which we possess, it is made up of the eternal relationship which we have with Christ.
As a Christian you must, on purpose, do what we can to allow good things into our hearts.