I love the story about Jesus healing the ten lepers. He didn’t cause their leprosy to immediately disappear while they were in front of Him. Instead, Jesus sent them on their way to the priests, so the priests could examine them to see that they had been healed. Then, Scripture declares, “As they went they were cleansed” (Luke 17:14). We don’t know if they felt a tingling sensation, and suddenly the leprosy was gone. Or it is possible that one of them looked at one of the others and realized that his friend’s leprosy had disappeared as they were walking. We’re not given the details. We don’t know how they figured it out. We just know they got healed while they were on their way to the priests.
My favorite part of this story, though, is not the healing itself, but the one guy who returned. “Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice” (Luke 17:15). One of the ten came back to thank Jesus. The Lord had miraculously healed him, and he wanted to give credit where credit was clearly due. Yet, he didn’t slip quietly up to the side and give Jesus a timid, barely-noticeable thumbs-up. There was no half-smile with a slight head-nod. No, he was “praising God with a loud voice.” He apparently wanted all to know what happened. Why? Because he had been instantly healed of a horrendous physical ailment. He wasn’t going to be shy about such a pronouncement. God had intervened in a way that would alter the entire course of the rest of his life.
The fact of the matter is that you and I have had an encounter that was far greater. We have been healed of something much worse than leprosy. The sin that separated us from our Creator has been taken away, removed completely. It’s gone forever! In light of this, how can we not be like that lone returning former leper and praise God with a loud voice?
(Excerpted from Worship in Heaven … and Why On Earth It Matters, by Tom Kraeuter ©2013 Training Resources, Inc.)