Last week in the beginning of Luke Chapter 17 we read about Jesus’ strong emphasis about intentional humility. This week, we will see intentional humility played out by the last person anyone (at that time) would expect.
In the passage that we will be learning about this week (Luke 17:11-19) we will witness Jesus’ interaction with 10 lepers. As with most people, the moment they met Jesus, their lives were changed forever.
It’s important for us to realize that before they met Jesus, these lepers lived a life of pain and suffering. Due to a contagious skin disease (we’re not sure exactly which one… leprosy could have meant a variety of contagious skin diseases), they had been cut off from the world they knew and were now forced to live outside the city walls. Instead of working for food, they must beg for food. Instead of hugs, they must stand back and shout “unclean” as others walk by.
If you get the chance, reading Leviticus 13-14 will provide even greater context for the culture that is taking place in this story. These rules that we have the privilege of glossing over, are rules that people were required to live by. When reading through the laws of Leviticus 13-14 picture yourself having to understand and follow those laws.
Imagine waking up to find a rash on your skin one day. Imagine, the rash begins to spread and you realize that this is no bug bite, or something else that would go away on it’s on. Think of the moment you must say goodbye to your family. Why? Because this is the law. This law is meant to protect the very people they love from also being infected. Remember, the Jewish people of the Old Testament were covering their mouths with fabric and quarantining before it was cool.
Having leprosy was not something anyone ever walked away from. Or should I say, leprosy was not something anyone had walked away from YET.
Looking forward to sharing more about this on Sunday. See you there.