Note from JesusDear Friend,
Frustrated! Yes, I was frustrated at this precious man in today’s verses who disobeyed My direct command not to tell anyone except the priests that he had been healed of leprosy.
I understand why he did it. Most mortals would have difficulty not telling everyone they had been healed. Most people would find it very hard to do what the law required first. But showing the priests that you were healed was what the Torah required. The priests were already starting to think I was trying to upstage them. So I had very good reasons to instruct the man not to tell anyone else after showing himself to the priest. Besides, you have seen in previous days’ readings how the people wanted a miracle-worker more than they wanted a Lord Who called them to change their lives so they could live for the kingdom of God.
Frustrated! Not only was I frustrated, but the Father’s plans for Me were temporarily frustrated. So I want to remind you of something essential: I want you to obey Me even when you think you know better what to do!
However, there is also another important truth I want you to learn from My interaction with this man who had leprosy: My miracles were not for My benefit. Recall that I refused to use my miraculous power for My benefit and My reputation when the devil tempted Me in the wilderness. Notice carefully how I healed this man with leprosy: I touched him — sharing his uncleanness and ostracism — then I healed him with a direct command. I shared a touch of grace before I spoke his healing.
Why is it so important to Me for you to see this truth? Simple. This event tells you a major reason why I came.
I am One with the Father. My words have power — creative and healing power. Just as the Father spoke the universe into existence, when I speak, My words have power. Demons are cast out, people are healed of their diseases, and you should obey. I speak the very words of God!
I have the authority to ask you to obey Me because of Who I AM. But if you listen to My words and watch My actions, I demonstrate how much God loves you. So I ask you to obey — not just because of My authority, but also because you recognize My great love for you and My desire to make you whole!Verses to LiveI am One with the Father. My actions show the Father’s heart. God is not a god far off, but a Savior Who has come near to you in Me, Jesus of Nazareth. What I do shows the Father’s love for you. In this story, you see God touch a man who would not be touched by another mortal because of his illness. Fear of contracting the disease, societal pressures, and the laws of the Torah to protect the people of Israel prevented human touch with someone who had leprosy. So with the stretch of My arm and the touch of My hand, I demonstrated My love. I AM willing to bear your uncleanness and ostracism so you can be made whole.Another time in a city nearby, a man covered with skin lesions [leprosy] comes along. As soon as he sees Jesus, he prostrates himself.
Leper:Lord, if You wish to, You can heal me of my disease.Jesus reaches out His hand and touches the man, something no one would normally do for fear of being infected or of becoming ritually unclean.
Jesus:I want to heal you. Be cleansed!Immediately the man is cured. Jesus tells him firmly not to tell anyone about this.
Jesus:Go, show yourself to the priest, and do what Moses commanded by making an appropriate offering to celebrate your cleansing. This will prove to everyone what has happened.Even though Jesus said not to talk about what happened, soon every conversation was consumed by these events. The crowds swelled even larger as people went to hear Jesus preach and to be healed of their many afflictions. Jesus repeatedly left the crowds, though, stealing away into the wilderness to pray.
(Luke 5:12-16)Response in PrayerFather God, forgive me. I confess that there are times when I see Your commands, Your call to certain behavior — Your demand for holy character and gracious compassion — to be hard, burdensome, and limiting. I know, O God, that You have the authority to demand this of me. I realize that Your desire is for my wholeness as well as my holiness. I realize that You have demonstrated Your great love for me in Jesus — entering my world, bearing my sin, sharing my burdens so that I can be Your child. Thank You! In the name of Jesus, I thank You. Amen.’A Year with Jesus’ is written by Phil Ware. © 1998-2022, Heartlight, Inc. ‘A Year with Jesus’ is part of the Heartlight Network.All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from The Voice™. © 2008 by Ecclesia Bible Society. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
When You Think You Know Better
Source: Passion for Praise