Kingdom vs. leprosy

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Jesus-heals-leper

Scripture: Luke 5:12 Once, when (Jesus) was in one of the cities, there was a man covered with leprosy. When he saw Jesus, he bowed with his face to the ground and begged him, “Lord, if you choose, you can make me clean.” 13 Then Jesus stretched out his hand, touched him, and said, “I do choose. Be made clean.” Immediately the leprosy left him.

Observation: In Jesus’ day, leprosy was considered a punishment from God for sin. Hence, people with leprosy were considered spiritually unclean and unfit for inclusion among God’s people. It would have been unthinkable for a rabbi to go near a person with leprosy, much less touch such a person. Yet, Jesus not only touches him, but heals him.

Rather than leprosy invading Jesus, the Kingdom of God present in Jesus invades leprosy – and conquers it.

Application: While there aren’t many lepers in the Dallas/Ft.Worth area where I live, there are people and places we are taught to avoid. They are mostly people and places of poverty, of known violence, of disease and affliction. And I understand why we’re taught to avoid such people and places – they are considered “dangerous”. It’s simple self-preservation, if not prejudice.

Yet, in our passage for today, the Kingdom of God (present in Jesus) goes on offense. It doesn’t fear being invaded by disease and death, but proactively conquers disease and death. This has me thinking…

I don’t think there are many lepers in my daily proximity, but I wonder – who are the “undesirables” in my community that Jesus wants me to pursue? How might the Kingdom of God (which is present in me and in all believers) invade the darkness around me? What about you, dear reader?

Prayer: Lord Jesus, the bible teaches us that the Holy Spirit is a spirit of boldness. This morning I admit that I’ve have lost some of that boldness. Give me, and those praying with me via this blog, grace to invade sin and death – not the other way around. We ask this in your holy name. Amen.

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