Luke 5:12-13 “And it came to pass, when he was in a certain city, behold a man full of leprosy: who seeing Jesus fell on his face, and besought him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. And he put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will: be thou clean. And immediately the leprosy departed from him.”
“A man full of leprosy” – This man had a problem. He had a big problem. He was full of leprosy the Bible tells us. It was the task of the Jewish priest to examine people to determine whether they were lepers (Leviticus 13). Infected people were isolated and could not return to normal society until declared “cleansed.” Leprosy was used by Isaiah as a picture of sin (Isaiah 1:4–6), and the detailed instructions in Leviticus 13—14 would suggest that more was involved in the procedure than maintaining public health. Like sin, leprosy is deeper than the skin (Leviticus 13:3) and cannot be helped by mere “surface” measures (Jeremiah 6:14). Like sin, leprosy spreads, and as it spreads, it defiles. Because of this defilement, a leprous person had to be isolated outside the camp (Leviticus 13:46. People with leprosy were looked on as “dead” (Numbers 12:12), and garments infected with leprosy were fit only to be burned in the fire (Leviticus 13:52).
His problem was insurmountable without direct intervention from the Lord. He had a problem that no matter how hard he worked at it, or his friends and family helped, that he could not overcome, he could not get victory over it. Do you have any problems today? Do you have a seemingly insurmountable problem, a problem too big, too serious, too beyond your control to do anything about? – Then you need to do what this man did.
We are going to examine the many things this man did, when faced with an impossible problem, a problem that was impossible to get victory over in his own power, please take note of the following points:
“Behold seeing Jesus” – He took his problem to the right person. He went to the one who could help him. He knew Jesus could help him. He knew Jesus could help solve this insurmountable problem, this incredible and tragic crisis and circumstance in his life. He knew Jesus had the answers he needed and the Almighty power to do something about it. (Matthew 28:18 – And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.)
“fell on his face” – He humbled himself before the Lord, He did not feel worthy to ask anything of Jesus, he put himself into a position of complete and total submission to the Lord. Notice he did not complain about his problem. Notice also, He did not hesitate to take it to Jesus.
Do we sometimes hesitate to take our problems and concerns to Jesus? We may think, I can take care of this by myself, or we may be ashamed of our actions that may have led to the problem, and therefore hesitate to take it to Jesus; well Jesus tells us to take all our problems to Him, and He does not put limitations or qualifications on what problems we can take to Him. We can take Him all our burdens whether they are self-imposed burdens or not. (Matthew 11:28-29 – Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.)
“and besought him” – the leper importunately pleaded with the Lord for help. This was not just a simple “can you help me?”, this was an earnest, impassioned, importunate cry for Jesus to help him with his problem. Is this how we bring our problems to Jesus?
It is the consistent and importunate prayers to our Savior that He answers. It says in Luke 11:8 “…yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needeth”, and in Luke 18:1-8 the importunate widow eventually gets justice as a result of her importunate pleading. We need to pray with importance when we make petitions of the Lord, have passion and seek Him out early and often for your need and for your big problem.
“saying Lord” – He acknowledges Jesus Lordship of his life. You may be saved, but is Jesus sitting on the throne of your life, or are you? Are you living your life according to your wants, your desires, your priorities or are you living your life seeking to do what Jesus wants you to do with your life? Do you desire the Lords will for your life? Is God’s priorities your priorities?
It is important to make sure Jesus is the Lord of your life if you want Him to answer your prayers, we need to make sure we have confessed our sins to Him, repaired our relationship with Him, if we expect to petition for His help with our problem. For the Bible says our prayers will not be answered if we regard iniquity in our hearts. (Psalm 66:18 – If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:)
“If thou wilt” – notice he asks according to the will of God. Is this how we petition the Lord, do you preface your prayer request as to be according to the will of God? Do we say “If it be your will Lord” this or that request, or do we approach God like He is our servant and dictate commands to Him, instead of coming humbly to Him as the servants we are to be and then ask for things to be done in accordance to His Will? (I John 5:14-15 – And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.)
Submission to the Will of God – Notice by his statement “If thou wilt” he is also implying that he was willing to accept the continuation of his problem and circumstances if it were not God’s will to heal him.
“Thou canst make me clean” – He had faith Jesus could take care of his problem. He believed if it was God’s will, that Jesus could heal him and remove this problem from his life.
He can give you complete victory over that problem, but we need the faith on our part to allow it to happen. We need to live a faith life, and seek to live out the Lords will in our life. He believed Jesus could do the seemingly impossible for Him, do we believe Jesus can take care of the seemingly impossible problem in our life? – He can, seek Him out, and grow your faith in Him.
Verse 13 – Jesus took care of the problem. Jesus removed that impossibly big problem from his life according to His divine will. Jesus had great compassion for this man and his big problem. Jesus has great compassion for all of us and all of our problems, Jesus loved us all so much He came to earth and died for our sins, so we could have the opportunity to accept Him as our Savior and go to Heaven one day. Jesus is the all-sufficient Savior and was completely capable of healing this man. He is completely capable of healing any problem, no matter how big it is, if it is in accordance to His perfect will. We need to turn our problems over to the Lord, give them to Him, make sure we are in right relationship with Him and trust in Him.
When we are faced with a problem in our life we need to acknowledge the existence of the problem, then we need to seek Jesus out, we need to run to Him with our problems and concerns, and He will gladly receive us, and gladly help us. We need to seek the Lord out with the proper attitude. We need to go to Him in complete submission to Him and completely surrender to His will, whatever that means. We need to approach Jesus with faith, it takes faith in the Lord to petition Him effectively, it takes sincerity to petition Him successfully, and it takes importance as we continually and passionately seek Him out for help with our problems. Jesus can take away our problem no matter the size or complexity of it, if it is in accordance to His Divine and sovereign will; and we need to be willing to accept the continuation of our problem if that is what God so chooses to allow to happen. Give your problem or concern to the Lord, and let Him help you, with relief from it, or help you with strength to endure it, and either way remember to always give the glory and honor to the Lord to whom all glory and honor is due. (I Timothy 1:17 – Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.)