19th Sunday after Pentecost Luke 17:11-19
My colleague, Old Testament professor Fred Gaiser, is just finishing a book on healing and the Bible to be published by Baker. I found a sermon of his on the web that shows some of the themes he sees in various healing texts. The sermon is on Luke 17:11-19.
Fred makes several points about what the tenth leper gets and how that multi-faceted healing is available to God's people today. His first point is that the healed one who returns does so because he sees God at work in the world. Here's an excerpt:
So, unlike the others, he had to return. The others could go and do whatever. This man could not. Having seen, he had to return and praise God. He had to throw himself at Jesus’ feet in thanksgiving. The "had to" is real. The experience is so overwhelming, so life changing, so joyful, it must be shared. "Which of you," asked Jesus, "if you found the lost coin, the lost treasure, the lost son, the lost sheep, would not tell the neighbors?" Wow, did I ever see a great movie! Look, there’s a rainbow! My cancer is in remission! Some things, if they are seen, simply have to be told. So it is with our friend in the story.
Copyright © Frederick J. Gaiser, 2001. Used by permission.
You can find the whole sermon on the St. Anthony Park Lutheran Church web site.