Inspirational

What Has Caused Your Leprosy?

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Jennifer is a highly anointed evangelist, accomplished author and media personality with more than fifteen years in the radio, television and publications arena, and founder of Simply Victorious Ministries, a ministry that is founded on biblical principles and one that aims to be a globally... Read More

What Has Caused Your Leprosy?

Scriptural Reference II Kings 7:3-11

Thank the Lord for his indescribable gift of the Holy Spirt and him bestowing upon me the Spiritual Gift(s) that I have to be utilized for his glory! I pray that this sermon article will ministry to every reader, someone is set free from every entanglement and bondage of Satan and consequently surrenders their lives to the Lord which is the best decision that they will ever make in their lives.

As we take a look at the word Leprosy extracted from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, “leprosy also known as Hansen's disease (HD), is a chronic skin infection caused by the bacteria Mycobacterium leprae[2] and Mycobacterium lepromatosis. The disease takes its name from the Latin word lepra, which means "scaly” and while the term "Hansen's disease" is named after the physician Gerhard Armauer Hansen. Leprosy is spread between people. It is believed to occur through a cough or contact with fluid from the nose of an infected person. Leprosy occurs more commonly among those living in poverty and is believed to be transmitted by respiratory droplets. Social stigma has been associated with leprosy for much of history, which continues to be a barrier to self-reporting and early treatment.”

I thought it necessary to define leprosy so that every reader can clearly understand what it is and to help me clearly pontificate my message to every reader. As duly noted earlier in history, if someone had leprosy they were considered an outcast and shunned by everyone around them. It was hard for them to seek help, food or any care because people were afraid that being in close proximity to them would increase their probability of getting infected. This causes me to be deeply contemplative about many homeless people. Although I have never heard of any homeless person having leprosy, people have a tendency to treat them as such. Nowhere can you go and not see homeless people around you, for as Jesus so eloquently expresses in the Bible that “you will always have the poor among you (Matthew 26:11, NLT).” So, it is so sad when I observe how homeless people are shunned, mistreated, belittled and even mocked for the simple fact that they are homeless which similarly I am pretty sure that is how leprous people must feel because of their condition.

As we take a look at scripture specifically in II Kings chapter 7, we are introduced to four leprous men. Although it isn’t clear how they contracted leprosy, it was evident the effect this condition had on their social standing and dealings with people in general. As we look at the first few verses, they were in a dilemma, they were hungry and they had a skin condition that was contagious but despite all of their problems, they knew that they couldn’t remain in the state that they were in i.e. “Why should we sit here waiting to die?” We will starve if we stay here, but with the famine in the city, we will starve if we go back there. So we might as well go out and surrender to the Armean army. If they let us live, so much the better. But if they kill us, we would have died anyway (II Kings 7:3, 4, NLT).” Even though these men were leprous because of their “leap of faith,” Jesus provided supernaturally on their behalf.

Furthermore, as we look at these four leprous men in the Bible, my question that I pose to you today is what has caused your leprosy? What has caused you to be considered an outcast in the eyes of people? What has caused you to be hindered in your life in some way? What has caused you to believe that just because you have made mistakes, like all of us have that, that “leprosy” or issue has caused you to cease from moving forward? What has caused you to feel as if you have no hope because life as marked you as “contagious’ or “unclean.” Whatever the case may be, Jesus knows where you are and he is in the business of bringing wholeness and meaning to your life i.e. “Suddenly a man with leprosy approached Jesus and knelt before him. “Lord,” the man said, “If you are willing, you can heal me and make me clean.” Jesus reached out and touched him. “I am willing, he said, “Be healed.” And instantly the leprosy disappeared (Matthew 8:2, 3, NLT).”

Isn’t it very refreshing to know that you have a Heavenly Father that loves you? You don’t have to feel that you are alone and that you are struggling with “leprosy” whatever that is representative of! Many Christians or people in general have decided to disassociate themselves from many religious organizations today because of the mistakes that they made along the way and they have been made to feel like they were a leper. Instead of people coming to them and embracing them with the love of God because “God is love” (John 3:16, NLT), they were met with legalistic, authoritative, dogmatic and power posturing behavior from other Christians or “people of God.” They were also made to feel that because of their mistakes, they would have to remain in the “condition that they were in!”

But, “what is the case with man isn’t the case with God! God doesn’t just throw us away because of the mistakes that we have made i.e. the example in the Bible of the “prodigal son” (Luke 15:11-24, NKJV). “Even though the young man left home and spent his inheritance on wild living and found himself broke and homeless, when he “came to his senses” and returned home, he was met not with scorning nor with contempt but, with love and acceptance. Not only that, but a feast and celebration was prepared for him.”              What a powerful example of God’s love and openness to embrace us as human beings. He understands that we are imperfect people and that we “come from the dust (Genesis 2:7, Ecclesiastes 3:20, NLT).” That is why he sent Jesus to be the atonement for our sins (John 3:16, NLT). And, that is why we don’t have to look to people but look to “God which is the author and finisher of our faith (Hebrews 12:2, NKJV).”

To add and for our learning, let us take a look in the Bible at another powerful illustration of God’s unconditional love and forgiveness towards his people. In the Bible, we are familiar with the story of David and Bathsheba. We understand from our reading that David “set eyes” upon Bathsheba that was the wife of Uriah. He pursued Bathsheba and eventually slept with her. As a result, she became pregnant and he tried to “cover his tracks” by getting Uriah to sleep with his wife and when he was unsuccessful, He arranged to have Uriah killed (II Samuel chapter 11). David was clearly an adulterer and a murderer. David had “unclean hands” and was infected by his sins. And, the “wages of his sin” (Romans 6:23, NLT) was the loss of his son. Although that was the case, the Lord was merciful i.e. when David confessed his sin to Nathan, he replied, “The Lord has forgiven you, and you won’t die for your sin (II Samuel 12:13, NLT).” I am so thankful for God’s grace ad mercy towards David as well as all of us because if he wasn’t we would all be destroyed.

Another example of God’s love and mercy towards us “leprous people” was the story in the Bible of the “Woman Caught in Adultery” (John chapter 8). As referenced in the word of God, teachers of religious law and Pharisees questioned God about what to do with the woman to try and entrap him. They kept demanding a response and Jesus finally replies, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman. Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman. Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you? No, Lord, she said. And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.”

Wow, what an awesome God that we serve! So, it doesn’t matter what mistakes you have made because Jesus never gives up on you. People may make you feel like a leper and tell you their beliefs and opinions but what is going to matter in the long run is that God has the last say so! But never underestimate the effects of sin because “sin is a disease” and is very contagious very much like leprosy.

In conclusion, hear the totality of it all! God loves you. God cares about your current condition. God is not like man “For his thoughts are nothing like our thoughts and his ways are far beyond anything we can imagine (Isaiah 55:8, NLT).” Your life is not over and God is not through with you yet! You may have had “leprosy” and have been told that you are “unclean” but you are the perfect specimen for God to work through and bring about spiritual transformation and healing in your life. And, to use your life, your “sin disease” or mistakes you have made to enable you to be an effective representative for his kingdom and therefore a be a tremendous blessing and encouragement to others.

You can also see this article displayed in Him Power Magazine's October, 2016 Issue, http://www.pneupathforliving.com/himpower-magazine/