But Samuel replied: “Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the Lord? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams
I Samuel 15:22
In yesterday’s blog I talked about the ten lepers whom Jesus healed as he travelled the roads between Samaria and Galilee. The significance of the border between Samaria and Galilee was that Jews and Samaritans were at odds. Tribally, culturally, theologically, historically – all those deep-rooted reasons existed for those people groups to be enemies. Yet, in that leper group, they were traveling together, despite those deep differences. It seems that life-threatening circumstances overcome even those major differences among people. They shared the suffering of leprosy and social isolation. They were desperate men.
When they came to Jesus for healing, he told them to “go and show themselves to the priest”. This was the command from Moses from ancient times, and Jesus invoked this to the lepers. Jesus could have healed them right there, right away. He had done that before. In this instance, I think he wanted an object lesson for them, for his followers and for us. I think the message is that as we meet God at the place of obedience, he does what we cannot do – heal ourselves.
We know of course, that the lepers obeyed Jesus and did find healing along the way. When we obey what God instructs, that allows him to do the healing that only he can do. Our natural actions can give rise to God’s supernatural interventions.
What a great lesson for us. Our obedience frees up God’s hand in our life to do amazing things. Our job is to let him do it.
Prayer: Lord, thank you for the plans you have for our benefit, Amen.