Ten lepers lived far from their village. Hearing of Christ’s miracles, they ask for help. Jesus healed the lepers with the Power of the Holy Spirit and through God’s will. Christ sends them to show themselves to the village priests. Walking to the church, he was healed. Of the ten, only one came to thank Christ. And that’s when Christ went out: But not ten of you are healed, and where are the other nine? Only one brought glory to the Lord Christ. Reading this article, you will understand how did Jesus heal the leper.
Plague of Leprosy. What is it?
Leprosy is a plague with multiple connotations. The Saviour was coming from the north of the Holy Land, descending towards Jerusalem before His Passion. He was somewhere on the border between Galilee and Samaria, probably heading east towards Perea to avoid passing through Samaria. Since the Samaritan Scythians did not look kindly on the pilgrimage to Jerusalem. Not infrequently, serious things happened, with Samaritans attacking and even killing Jewish pilgrims from Galilee. They were passing through Samaria to shorten the way to the Holy City. As the Saviour was between Galilee and Samaria, ten lepers needed His help and healing hand.
Leprosy was, at that time, an incurable disease for which doctors had found no cure. Even today, it is not one of the curable diseases. Leprosy devours the body. It eats away at it. It slowly rots away. But as well as being a challenging disease, it is also contagious. That is why it was customary in the East and was lawful in Jerusalem. There were no hospitals for the lepers.
They lived in isolated, deserted places, empty tombs, caves, and hidden valleys where no one entered. They come into contact with anyone. Any touch of them meant molestation and immediate entry into the same cursed fate.
When did Jesus heal the leper?
The Saviour Jesus Christ did it on His way to Jerusalem, passing through the midst of Samaria and Galilee, which is exclusively related by the evangelist Luke, the physician. It is hard today to imagine what it was like 2,000 years ago to suffer from leprosy. Even in today’s pandemic context, the most dreaded disease remains cancer for contemporary man, but ancient leprosy was a much harsher reality. Today, cancer patients benefit from national health programs dedicated to these diseases, psychotherapy, family empathy, and the psychological support of their peer group. Yet, they often experience intense fear, despair, and depression. How did Jesus do it? How did Jesus heal the leper?
Suppose we add to these realities the lack of effective treatment at the time. In that case, we can think about what their encounter with Christ meant for the ten lepers, what an unexpected opportunity and an unfulfilled dream was the healing that followed.
Leprosy History Bible
It should be noted that, several thousand years ago, the term ‘leprosy’ covered a relatively broad category of manifestations of diseases that today’s medicine classifies as distinct entities: lupus, psoriasis, seborrheic dermatitis, impetigo, erythema multiforme, thrombophlebitis, multiple sarcomas, and leprosy itself. Infection with Mycobacterium leprae, a sister of tuberculosis. How did He do it? How did Jesus heal the leper?
For each of these challenges, pharmaceutical sciences have developed treatments. Let’s look beyond the medical details of the disease. Several characteristics of ancient leprosy can be identified: firstly, on an interpersonal level, it was a contagious disease, at the same time mutilating and socially marginalizing; in other words, it was very much like sin. Moreover, from a religious perspective, leprosy has often been linked to breaking commandments. So we can ask the question: Is not sin itself leprosy of the soul?
Sin, like leprosy, is contagious. How easy it is to copy our brother’s sin! This is because the path of sin is the broad, smooth road that leads to the promise of an outcome that, as attractive as it looks from afar, turns out to be as inconsistent and dry in the end. The importance of the environment with which one interacts is well known in terms of personal development and the satisfaction of one’s existence.
Jesus’ redemption sacrifice
Our Lord Jesus Christ’s coming into the world, and His sacrifice on the Cross redeemed the entire human race, just as the incarnate Son of God healed all ten lepers. But objective salvation did not solve the problem of everyone’s salvation, just as healing from leprosy but not being born in communion with the Source of Life is an incomplete solution.
Although ten were healed, only one made an effort to return. To give thanks and to begin a two-way relationship with the Creator. So, in all that we do, let us take care of the question the Saviour asks. But where are the nine, is not aimed at us, but by likening ourselves to the One. Let us tighten our spiritual attention and see how God’s grace works wondrously in all who show their readiness. Why did Jesus do it? Why and how did Jesus heal the leper?
Ten lepers healed
To understand how much good Christ did to the ten lepers by healing them, it is first necessary to say a few things about how frightening the disease they suffered was. Leprosy was one of the most severe and dreadful diseases ravaging people’s lives then.
The patient’s face became hideous, the fingers and toes became crooked, and gradually there was such disfigurement that one could no longer tell the man from the woman and the young from the old. In the early stages of the disease, the sufferers were hypersensitive to pain, for they felt excruciating pain. Still, after a specific time, they fell into a complete bodily insensibility, for they could no longer touch when their bodies were pricked or prodded with any object, however sharp.
Slowly, slowly, they died. On the outskirts of cities were the lepers, who walked naked and barefoot and looked like living corpses. Those who saw them hid their faces in horror; the lepers, for their part, if they happened to meet a healthy person, had to cover their faces and shout, “Unclean! Unclean!” Rarely does someone happens to remember them and throw them a piece of bread or a coat. In these extreme conditions, the lepers died of misery and terrible suffering. There are also sporadic cases; for unknown reasons, leprosy would cease, and a leper would become healthy. In this case, he would have to show himself to the priest to be allowed to return to society.
The Glory of God
The Saviour reveals glory, not for Himself, but for us. The glory of God is not to glorify Himself as God. But to share the prize with us – light, love, joy, strength, and health. It’s different from the glory we humans bring. Does God need our gratitude? He doesn’t need it, but he enjoys it.
We profess the belief that there is a living, dynamic, real interpersonal relationship between God and people. God is not a principle or an idea but a communion of loving Persons.
Joy is not motivated by the fact that someone shows his gratitude because he is in debt. Just as sadness is not caused by the fact that someone does not fulfill this debt. But joy is motivated by the fact that through such a pretext, the relationship between the two is activated, that positive content is given to this relationship.
What does leprosy do to the body?
Leprosy changes a man’s countenance to the point of mutilation. Over time, isolation led to isolation and sometimes dehumanization. To today’s leper, Christ the Lord extended his hand, showing us deep affection and nobility. Leprosy is just like the state of sinfulness. Sin deforms, hates, and undermines our health; it distances us from our fellow men and God.
The leprosy of sins changes us, and the blessing of God sanctifies us. So let us change how we live and apply God’s will. I hope you understand how Jesus healed the leper from that leper’s heart and body.