Ellen G. White Writings

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Humble Hero, Page 116

everyone had for him. He thought only of the blessed hope of healing.

He was a repulsive spectacle, his decaying body horrible to look at. When people saw him, they fell back in terror, crowding one another in their eagerness to avoid any contact with him. Some tried to prevent him from approaching Jesus, but he neither saw nor heard them. He saw only the Son of God. Hurrying to Jesus, he threw himself at His feet with the cry, “Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.” (Italics added.)

Jesus replied, “I am willing; be cleansed,” and laid His hand on him.

Immediately a change came over the leper. His flesh became healthy, the nerves sensitive, the muscles firm. The rough, scaly surface on his skin disappeared, and a soft glow, like that of a healthy child’s skin, took its place.

Christ urgently instructed the man about the necessity of silence and prompt action. Jesus said to him, “See that you say nothing to anyone; but go your way, show yourself to the priest, and offer for your cleansing those things which Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.” If the priests knew the facts concerning the healing, their hatred of Christ might lead them to give a dishonest judgment. Jesus wanted the man to present himself at the temple before rumors of the healing had reached them. In this way, the restored leper could secure an impartial decision and be permitted to unite with his family and friends again.

The Savior also knew that if news of this leper’s healing spread, other sufferers from this disease would crowd around Him, and the cry would be raised that the people would be contaminated. Many lepers would not use the gift of health as a blessing to themselves or others. And by drawing lepers around Him, Jesus would open the way for His enemies to accuse Him of breaking down the restrictions of the law. This would hinder His preaching.

A large crowd had seen the leper’s healing and were eager to learn of the priests’ decision. When the man returned to his friends, there was great excitement. The man made no effort to hide his cure. It would have been impossible to conceal anyway, but the leper told it widely, thinking that Jesus had laid this restriction on him only out of modesty. He did not understand that every such exhibit of power made the priests and elders more determined to destroy Jesus. The restored man rejoiced in the vigor of manhood and felt it impossible to hold back from giving glory to the Physician who had made him whole. But his act of spreading the matter far and wide caused the people to flock to Jesus in such great numbers that He was forced for a time to stop His work.

Every act of Christ’s ministry had a far-reaching purpose. He tried in every way to reach the priests and teachers, who were steeped in prejudice and tradition. By sending the healed leper to the priests, He gave them a testimony designed to disarm their prejudices. The Pharisees had claimed that Christ was opposed to the law, but His instruction to the cleansed leper to present an offering according

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