More Than Clean - Luke 17:11-19
The Cycle of Christian Faith:
#1. What drives us to Christ: Our need for ______________ .
In the first century there was only one cure for leprosy… and His name was Jesus. We cannot begin to fathom the disease of leprosy. 30 years to die. flesh rotting. smell of disease. repulsive sight. no contact with people. They see Jesus, they see opportunity for healing…
“Ten men who had leprosy met [Jesus]. When he saw them, he said, ‘Go show yourselves to the priests.’ And as they went, they were cleansed.” Luke 17:12,14 NIV
Why show to priests? Priests could declare healing - a return to society. Before healing took place, steps of faith moving toward priests that they would be healed. When we need healing, we cannot put conditions on God. We must take steps of faith before evidence of healing is there.
Never underestimate the difficulties that someone goes through and the resulting connection of faith that could occur. God grows our faith through our need for healing.
#2. What brings us back to Christ: Our gift of ______________ .
There are two keys to this passage. The first key is that out of 10 people who desperately needed healing and all of whom sought out Jesus for that healing, ONLY ONE OF THEM came back praising God for it…
“One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice.” Luke 17:15 NIV
The sad truth is that when we are desperate and see no other solution to our problem, God seems like an obvious choice. Nothing to lose. Ask for God’s help! But later, after we are through the crisis, it is easy for us to dismiss the effectiveness of God’s help in our lives.
This is the purpose of praise - to cement into our minds that we needed God and that God was there for us when we needed Him. And the right kind of praise is always public praise - praise in front of everyone. It is why baptism is such an important part of someone’s initial coming to Christ. Do you go back?
#3. What keeps us with Christ: Our remembering to ____________ .
“He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him - and he was a Samaritan.” Luke 17:16 NIV
Praise is giving credit where credit is due. Thanksgiving is being grateful that God acted when He did. This is the 2nd key - BOTH are worship.
For the only one to come back to give both praise and worship being a Samaritan is of racial and religious significance. Samaritans were considered half-breeds. They worshiped in the wrong place and in the wrong way according to the Hebrew religious leaders. Yet it was only the Samaritan that got this right.
We know that God looks at our hearts for true worship. It’s not what we say that matters. It’s not even always what we do that matters. It is the cleanness and honesty of our inward love for God that He sees and appreciates in our best worship.
#4. What separates us for Christ: Our worship without ______________.
This is an important reminder in today’s church. Worship has become popular - especially in crowds. Has anyone noticed how much easier it is to worship God in a loud voice with upraised hands of praise and thanksgiving when so many other people are doing the same thing? But what about when there are only a few? Or none other? What if we’re the only one?
“Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?” Luke 17:17-18 NIV
There will come a time when every knee will bow and all will proclaim the obvious truth when Jesus is ultimately revealed as the Son of God - as the Creator and deserving of everyone’s worship, praise and thanksgiving. But we have the opportunity NOW to reveal our true heart of worship to God BEFORE He reveals His true Son to everyone. Don’t you want to be the one who returns to praise, regardless of popularity?
#5. What powers us in Christ: Our faith-driven health into __________.
The Christian life is not only a life of worship, but is also a life of service. A life of “going” for Christ. But to do this well, we have to be well. We have to be healed. We cannot serve well out in the life of this world unless we are well inside of our own life.
“Then he said to him, ‘Rise and go; your faith has made you well.’” Luke 17:19 NIV
3 different words for healing:
v. 15 “When he saw he was healed.” “hi-a-tha” Purely a medical term. It means to mend, to repair. It’s like a broken bone finally mending. This guy was all patched up.
v. 17. “Were not all ten cleansed?" “kath-a-ri-dzo” The root word for catheter. Another medical word - remove the impurities. When a doctor inserts a cath (angioplasty), removes the blockage from an artery.
In our lives - before Christ - there are things that need to be patched up. There are also thing that just need to be removed from our lives. You need both to be well. Sometimes we want to be mended without the removal of the impurities. Can’t hold onto both. Sometimes we need to give up on things that hold us back… if we really want to be well.
v. 19.“Your faith has made you well.” “So-dzo” or “so-so” Used to describe the SAFE delivery of a baby. Where we get our word for “saved.” Matthew’s ANGEL begins with Jesus coming to “SAVE” people from their sins.
Conclusion - Leprosy a total disruption of living tissue. Death sentence. Jesus only salvation. Our sin is the same to our soul. We need healed and cleansed in order to be well. THEN we have the power to SERVE.