Healing of the Ten Lepers

    

In the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost.

The Gospel, all the Gospel is a gift of God to us, and although we are not continuously reminded of the need to be grateful, how can we not respond with gratitude to what the Gospel brings to us? God has so loved the world that He has given His only begotten Son that the world may be saved; and the Son has given Himself freely, in the sovereign freedom of His Divinity to us; no-one has taken His life from Him—these are His own words; He gave His life willingly, freely, that we may live.

And today we have in the Gospel a short example of the way in which we, most of the time, receive the gifts of God. Ten men came, covered with leprosy, condemned to a cruel death by illness, but also rejected ritually by their own people for the impurity of this infectious disease. They came to Him, but stood at a distance, because they knew that according to the Jewish Law they had no right even to come near Him or to touch Him. They asked for mercy. And God sent them to the priests to bring a sign of their gratitude for the healing which they had not even received; and they believed, and they went, and they were healed even before they reached their destination... We might have expected them to rush back to fall to the feet of Christ, to touch Him in gratitude. But no... Nine of them went their way; it was enough for them to have been healed—that was all they needed from God. One of them, however, turned round, and came to thank the Lord.

Isn’t this an image of the way in which we so often also behave? We pray, we ask the Lord for something that matters to us. It may not be life and death, it may just be that we need so much; we need one thing or another. Or, that we don’t even need it so much, but that we long for it so much. And then it is given us; and we receive the gift, and we rush into life with this gift in our hearts, this gift in our hands, we rush to life because it is enough for us that our prayer was fulfilled. How seldom it is that we come back, leaving our gift to be used later, but first of all turning to God and saying: What a wonder! What love You have! How great, how compassionate, how humble that You have responded to my prayer... One out of ten came back to the Lord Jesus Christ. How many of us have ever come immediately, before they took advantage of the gift, to turn to God with a smile, like a child turns and says, “Thank you!” even with a smile, without words, before taking advantage of what is given. And we loose so much by not being grateful; because if we would learn to be grateful for the obvious gifts of God, we would gradually discover that we can be grateful for a great deal more, for everything that Providence puts in our way—not only things we rejoice in, not only the wonders of life, but even the challenges of life, the things that require from us courage, greatness, and nobility; things that we fear. And how often could we overcome vanity by gratitude! Because vanity consists in looking at ourselves, and thinking how wonderful we are, forgetting that all that we are, all that we have is a gift of God. If only—every time we have said the right thing, done the right thing; been worthy of our human quality, human greatness and nobility, and also of the name of disciples of Christ—if every time we turned to God and said, ‘Yes! How wonderful are the words I have spoken, how good is the action I have performed—and everything was of You. The occasion was given by You, O Lord! I was able to perceive the need because You whispered into my heart: Look! I could understand because I had my mind enlightened by the Gospel! My heart responded because You touched it, and the heart of stone that I carry in my bosom most of the time became a heart of flesh full of compassion and understanding! And You gave me the means by which to meet the need, and the joy of meeting this need!

If we could respond to everything this way, we would discover that life is made into an act of worship and of gratitude.

Let us reflect on this, because within a just few weeks, a few days, we are coming to a day when our heart should be aflame with gratitude: for God has loved us so much as to become one of us. While we were strangers, alien to Him, often inimical to Him, He came, and He gave His life for us that we may live! We must prepare for it, for joy, gratitude, faith, openness to God does not happen all of a sudden—we must prepare for it. Let us reflect on what is going to happen—what happened nearly 2000 years ago that we shall remember as an actual event now, in a few weeks—and be ready, with a heart tilled, deeply furrowed by faith; by reflection, having thought out all our life. Let us be ready to receive the Lord like a shepherd, in the simplicity and purity of our hearts, or like the Wise Men in the deep understanding of wisdom. Amen!

Mitras.ru

See also
On Luke 13:10-17. Christ Still Loves Sinners On Luke 13:10-17. Christ Still Loves Sinners
Rev. George Dimopoulos
On Luke 13:10-17. Christ Still Loves Sinners On Luke 13:10-17. Christ Still Loves Sinners
Rev. George Dimopoulos
Dear Brethren, God loves nothing more than He loves man, and hates nothing more than He hates hypocrisy. When our Blessed Savior, Jesus Christ, was here on earth, He was full of love and mercy toward all men; only towards the hypocrites did He appear harsh and demanding.
Sermon on the Healing of the Woman with the Issue of Blood Sermon on the Healing of the Woman with the Issue of Blood
Archpriest Andrew Phillips
Sermon on the Healing of the Woman with the Issue of Blood Sermon on the Healing of the Woman with the Issue of Blood
Twenty-Third Sunday After Pentecost
Archpriest Andrew Phillips
Today's Gospel concerns two miracles, one the healing of an illness and the other the overcoming of death. These two miracles are closely linked, for both illness and death have the same origin, the same cause, they are both the result of sin, both entered the world as a result of the sin of Adam. As the Apostle Paul says in his letter to the Orthodox Christians in Rome, 'the wages of sin are death'.
On the Leave-taking of the Dormition On the Leave-taking of the Dormition
Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh
On the Leave-taking of the Dormition On the Leave-taking of the Dormition
Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh
We don't murder, we don’t stone, but we turn a deaf ear to Christ speaking in the Gospel, to the testimony of Saints. Or we accept them with joy for one moment, but then, we do not carry it out long enough, with enough determination. And when we hear Christ speak, we don't murder Him as the Jews did in the days of His flesh. Rather, we turn away, and we go our own way.
The Thirteenth Instruction. That one must bear temptation with thanksgiving and without disturbance The Thirteenth Instruction. That one must bear temptation with thanksgiving and without disturbance
Abba Dorotheos
The Thirteenth Instruction. That one must bear temptation with thanksgiving and without disturbance The Thirteenth Instruction. That one must bear temptation with thanksgiving and without disturbance
Abba Dorotheos
Such are those who really want to be saved: this is what it means to bear the yoke of temptation with humility of wisdom and to pray for the life of Nebuchadnezzar. This is why the Prophet said, In the life of Nebuchadnezzar is our salvation. The same thing is implied in saying, "I see great fruit coming to me from this labor" as "in the life of Nebuchadnezzar is our salvation." This the Elder confirms by saying, "Today I know that you are in the way to making progress and you will surpass me."
On the Island of Lepers On the Island of Lepers
Bishop Alexander (Mileant)
On the Island of Lepers On the Island of Lepers
Bishop Alexander (Mileant)
Our human condition may be compared to life on an island of lepers, where the inhabitants are in different stages of recovery. The Sacrament of Baptism washes away the leprosy of sin and infuses great spiritual power into a man. The scars of sin, however, do not disappear right away. A certain predisposition to sin remains.
Giving Thanks to God by the Way We Live Giving Thanks to God by the Way We Live
Chris Avramopoulos
Giving Thanks to God by the Way We Live Giving Thanks to God by the Way We Live
Chris Avramopoulos
Thankfulness is a state of being and a way of life for all Orthodox Christians, for you and me. A thankful spirit is a key characteristic of a Christian. It sets us apart from the world. It makes us different. Thankfulness is more than a comparison of our own circumstances to someone else's. It is more than having enough food to eat, a nice home, good health, or financial security, because any of these can be lost in an instant. Thankfulness is being grateful to God for who we are, His sacrifice for us, and the hope and joy of everlasting life.
Comments
Here you can leave your comment on the present article, not exceeding 700 characters. All comments will be read by the editors of OrthoChristian.Com.
Enter through FaceBook , or enter your information:
Your name:
Your e-mail:
Enter the digits, seen on picture:

Characters remaining: 700

×