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59 Luke 17.11-19

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Luke 17:11-19

Thank You, God.

v    Opening Illustration

Many years ago, a boat was wrecked in a storm on Lake Michigan near Evanston, Illinois. Students from Northwestern University formed themselves into rescue teams. One student, Edward Spencer, saved seventeen people from the sinking ship.

Years later, R. A. Torrey was talking about this incident at a meeting in Los Angeles, and a man in the audience called out that Edward Spencer was present. Dr. Torrey invited Spencer to the platform. An old man with white hair slowly climbed the steps as the applause rang.

Dr. Torrey asked him if anything in particular stood out in his mem­ory. He replied "Only this, of the seventeen people I saved, not one of them thanked me.


v    There is a disease as old as time

Ø     Ingratitude

§        It is a disease that displays the depravity of the human heart

§        It is a disease that lays bear the self-absorption humanity is born with

§        It is a disease that makes people forget what they are given


v    In our text today, it is not 17, but 10 who are saved from a terrible life of pain and loneliness

Ø     Yet only one returns to say simply…

§        Thank you…God


V. 11-13 ~ A Cry of Mercy

v    Jesus making his way to Jerusalem

Ø     Since early in Luke, that is his goal

§        A large portion of Luke is taken up with Jesus’ walk toward his death (9-19)

·        9:51 ~ After Peters confession

¨     “Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem”

Ø     That is what Luke wants us to concentrate on

Ø     That is what Luke’s Gospel is all about

§        Christ’s atoning death on the cross

·        So here

¨     Luke reminds us of that

¨     And we need reminding!

v    On his way into a village, 10 lepers met him

Ø     Not unusual

§        According to the Law…

·        The ritually unclean (i.e. lepers) had to stay away from the “clean” people

¨     Why?

Ø     A Physical reminder of a spiritual reality

§        visual reminder to the people of God that they were a separate and holy people

§        That no unclean thing was to be among them

·        Purity

·        Separated-ness

v    These lepers obeyed the Law and stayed out of the town and away from people

Ø     In fact, they stood at a distance from Jesus and cried out to him

§        “Jesus, master, have pity on us!”

·        And in their cry we see Knowledge, Faith and Hope

¨     Knowledge of who he was

Ø     They called him “Jesus”

§        Jesus’ healing reputation had obviously preceded him!

¨     They cried out in Faith, “Master”

Ø     They ascribed to Jesus authority

§        And that is what we do when we put our faith in Jesus

·        We give Jesus “authority” in and over our lives

¨     LORD and savior

Ø     Lordship of Jesus in your life is very important

§        Many people want a savior, but not a “Lord” or “master”

¨     And Hope in what he could do

Ø     Heal them

Let’s look at Jesus’ reaction to them…

V. 14 ~ A Leap of Faith

v    Jesus did not approach the lepers as he did in chapter 5

Ø     Remember…

§        Touched leper and said…

·        “Be clean”

v    This was different

Ø     He spoke from afar and told them to go and show themselves to the priests

§        According to Levitical Law…explain

·        Jesus told them to believe in him

¨     They would be healed

Ø     Essentially what Jesus was saying to the Lepers was…Trust Me

§        You simply have to take me at my word…Trust me

§        Turn in another direction and go…Trust me

§        You are not healed right now, but Trust me

v    This is a perfect picture of salvation, isn’t it?

Ø     Jesus calls to us from afar, doesn’t he

§        Turn and go to the ultimate high priest Jesus Christ

§        You will be healed of that spiritual disease called sin

Ø     He speaks to us from his Word (The Scriptures) and says…Trust me

§        Jesus asks us to Trust him for eternal salvation

Ø     He asks us to turn in a different direction than we are going

§        That is what repentance means

·        To turn 180 degrees

Ø     He asks us to follow where he is going…Trust Me

§        Sometimes into the valley of the shadow of death

Ø     He tells us that we will not be healed immediately of the troubles, issues, scars and tribulations of life…But Trust Him!

§         We do not know how far the 10 lepers traveled until they were healed

·        But somewhere along the line they were healed

§        In fact, in our lives, many of those troubles will never go away…

·        But Jesus promises to be there with you through them

v    Simply put,

Ø     Just as Jesus asks the 10 lepers to turn and be healed….

§        Jesus asks each one of us to do the same

·        Turn and Trust Him

¨     Have you trusted Jesus for your salvation?

Ø     Have you put your trust in Jesus’ Word?

v    Amazingly enough…The lepers did!

Ø     That was what we would call A leap of Faith

§        They turned and started toward the temple to show themselves to the priests

·        Trusting that Jesus would heal them somewhere along the way

¨     And he did!

Ø     V. 14d ~ As they went they were cleansed

And look at what happened next…

V. 15-19 ~ A Show of Gratitude

v    Only one came back to thank Jesus

Ø     1 out of 10!

§        How often I have thought about people who Jesus has helped through a rough time in their life

·        They have made a promise to Jesus

·        They may have even made a profession of faith

¨     But then when they are out of a jam, they forget about God

Ø     They drift away

§        They never come back and say thank you

§        We are not told in Scripture what the 9 other lepers did

·        I personally think that they did go to the priests to be declared clean

¨     But why?

Ø     To be accepted back into society socially

§        Not so that they could participate in the worship of Yahweh

·        They wanted God for what He could do for them…

¨     Not for what they could do for him

v    Not so with the Samaritan leper!

Ø     He came back to Jesus

§        ‘Praising God in a loud voice, falling at his feet and thanking him’

v    What about us?

Ø     Are we more like the 9 or the 1?

§        Do we want God only for what he can do for us…

·        Or is our relationship deeper than that

§        Do come to God for our “fix” and then go on our merry way, like the 9…

·        Or do we return to our Lord and Savior like the 1?

§        Do we want God on our terms…

·        Or do we submit to him on his?

v    The 9 or the 1 (Pause)

v    If you are sitting here, I hope you are like the 1

Ø     Returning to Jesus again and again

§        To show a deep, sincere and abiding gratitude for what He has done for you

v    Jesus has given you eternal life, a free gift from God

Ø     How do we say…

§        Thank you, God.

Ø     First of all, it needs to be noted…

§        There is nothing we can do or say that can ever repay what God has done for us in salvation

·        Salvation is not like a mortgage

¨     A large lump sum of grace that needs to be paid back slowly

Ø     The things we do in no way are an effort to repay God

·        Neither is Salvation like a carrot

¨     This wonderful prize just out of our grasp

Ø     That keeps us going and doing things in hopes that one day it will be attained

v    No, if you have placed your trust in Jesus Christ for eternal life

Ø     Salvation is yours right now

§        The leprosy if sin and death are gone

·        You are healed

¨     Now what are you going to do?

v    I think we can learn a lot from the Samaritan leper’s actions in verses 15-16 about holy Gratitude

v    Look at verses 15-16

Ø     Notice he came back praising God IN A LOUD VOICE

§        “Phones magales” = ENG. Megaphone

·        One way to show our gratitude is not to feel ashamed of him

¨     To declare him aloud

§        Illustration: Kathy in 5-8th grade did not want her friends to meet or know her parents

·        She wanted them to think that she was an orphan

§        That is what many of us act like

·        We come to church and acknowledge your heavenly father

¨     But then when we leave and we act like orphans

Ø     We are shamed to mention the name of our heavenly father

Ø     Notice the leper fell at Jesus’ feet

§        GK = fell on his face

·        Face down

¨     He worshipped him

§        That certainly is a way we can show our gratitude to God

·        By coming back again and again and worshipping him

¨     Not just on “high holidays”

¨     Not just when it is convenient for you

Ø     Notice that the Samaritan leper thanked him …

§        “Where there is true faith, there are profoundly thankful hearts”

·        Col 3:15, 17

¨     Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful… And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

v    I’d like us to notice one final very simple detail…

Ø     The Samaritan leper “came back”

§        You see…

·        It is not how much faith you have received that is important,

¨     But what you do with the faith you have been given

Ø     The Samaritan Leper did not know much about Jesus

§        He was not privy to all the teachings the disciples had

§        He did not have a robust Christology

§        He did not worry about Jesus’ role in creation

§        He did not know how the world was going to come to a close

§        He did not know all the details about salvation

·        But he ‘came back’

¨     He came with what little faith he had and gave his life to Jesus

Ø     Maybe you only know a little about Jesus

§        Who he is and what he did

·        That is enough!

Ø     The Scriptures are filled with people that only had a mustard seed of faith

§        The thief on the cross had a mustard seed worth of faith

·        But he trusted Jesus when he said…

¨     Today you will be with me in paradise

§        The centurion had a mustard seed worth of faith

·        But he trusted Jesus when he said…

¨     Your servant will live

§        The bleeding woman had a mustard seed worth of faith

·        She believed that if she could just touch Jesus’ robe

¨     She would be healed

Ø     You see…

§        It is not the amount of faith you have

·        It is the object that you put that faith in

¨     Illustration: Cathy Campbell

Ø     So many people have come up to me after hearing about how Cathy Campbell has handled her tragic circumstances and said…

§        Oh, what a great faith she has

§        Oh, what a woman of faith

§        Wow, what faith

§        No!

·        I am sure that Cathy has faith about the size of a mustard seed right now

¨     But that does not matter

Ø     It is not the size of your faith that is important…

§        It is the object of your faith that matters

·        And Jesus Christ is more than sufficient for any circumstances

v    The Samaritan leper has a mustard seed of faith

Ø     But he placed that in the all-sufficient Jesus Christ

§        And so Jesus said…

·        Rise and go, your faith has made you well

¨     GK: “Rise and go, Your faith has saved you”

v    You see…

Ø     Instead of going to the priest, the Samaritan became a priest

Ø     Notes:


v    Bible gives us many things for which to be grateful

Ø     God loving and being faithful to us (Ps 52:9)

Ø     For hearing our cry (Ps 118:21)

Ø     Safe travel (Acts 28:15)

Ø     For other believers (Rom 1:8)

Ø     For delivering us from our tendency to sin (Rom 7:25)

Ø     For prayer (1 Cor 14:18)

Ø     For hope (1 Cor 15:57)

Ø     For perseverance in suffering (2 Cor 2:14)

Ø     For support in ministry (2 Cor 8:16)

Ø     For those who respond to God’s Word (1 Thess 2:13)

Ø     For being able to serve others (1 Tim 1:12)

Ø     For God’s attributes (Rev 4:9)


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