During the course of His ministry, Jesus performed more than 40 miracles, including healing the sick, changing the natural elements of nature and even raising people from the dead. A miracle is considered an event that occurs outside the bounds of natural law.
Each month, we will take a closer look at one of His miracles to understand the depth of His love for us. Understanding the miracles of Jesus can change your life and it all begins with believing through faith.
In Luke 17:11-19, there’s a touching story about Jesus healing 10 lepers. Unlike other miracles, it isn’t the healing that’s the point of the story, but what happened during and after that explains God’s power and mercy.
The men with leprosy were not only ill but were also social outcasts. Leprosy is a terrible skin disease that causes people’s flesh to scar and decay and is highly contagious. These outcasts often formed their own communities for personal safety and to combat their isolation. People would sometimes throw stones at lepers who they thought were getting too close to them, out of fear of contamination.
Jesus was in their village, but these 10 men were too afraid to approach Jesus to ask for his help and “stood at a distance” and called for him to have pity on them.
Jesus approached the lepers and instructed them to go show themselves to the priest. That meant that they needed faith that as they left Jesus to go see the priest, that they would be healed. Jesus did not heal them first. He told them to go see the priest while they still had leprosy. That’s almost a definition of faith; trusting in what we cannot prove.
In the story, only one of the 10 comes back to thank Jesus. Interestingly, the one who comes back is a Samaritan. Samaritans were sworn enemies of Jews at that time. So why was he the one to come back, rather than the Jews? Maybe he had had a more profound sense of what had been done for him. If Jesus healed only Jewish people, that would be a normal expectation.
If you don’t believe you deserve to be saved and God saves you anyway, you will be deeply grateful. For Jesus to heal a Samaritan showed that God’s grace is for everyone. Indeed, God’s grace and mercy is given to all of us through our faith in Him.