In Bible times, as today, leprosy was a horrible disease. Overcoming the condition was nearly impossible, and only a rabbi could declare a person cured and able to re-enter society.
Such was the culture when ten lepers begged Jesus to come to their aid. Rather than perform a miracle on the spot, He told them to go see the rabbi, implying that something big was up. On the way, their skin became normal. Tumors and growths disappeared. Twisted fingers straightened. They were healed!
One – only one – of the ten turned around, going back to thank Jesus. And at this point in the story, most Bible teachers give the other nine a hard time for their lack of gratitude. But maybe that’s a bit unfair and overlooks a more important point.
The Son of God told ten men to do something very specific: “Go show yourself to the rabbi.” Nine obeyed immediately, just as instructed, doing exactly what they were supposed to according to the scriptures and Jewish law. They proved themselves to be good, solid, religious people.
One took a detour.
Sometimes love for another person or for God Himself pulls me from the common interpretation of divine commands. Blatant disobedience is obviously never a good idea, but straying from the norm can be closer to the heart of the heavenly Father than accepted methods in place for generations. Maybe I’m a rebel, as perhaps are many of you reading this. If so, we’re in good company… sharing the mindset with at least one thankful ex-leper.