This past weekend, millions in America gathered around dinner tables, television sets, and in family living rooms to spend time celebrating with each other. For many, the Thanksgiving holiday was the only time they were able to see their extended family together in one location, and they were grateful to spend time together and catch up on all that has happened in each other’s lives. Thanks was given for the many blessings of the past year, and many departed with anticipation for the year that is to come.
I hope that you had much to express gratitude for this year as well. As one writer said, “Ingratitude is poison to the soul.” The more grateful you are, the healthier and happier your life will be.
The Gospel of Luke contains a powerful story about gratitude. In it, Jesus encounters ten lepers. He heals all ten of them, but only one really realizes the extent to which he had been healed and turns around to thank Jesus. Leprosy was a terrible disease. It was considered unclean and contagious. People who had leprosy back in Jesus’ day were considered outcasts. They were kept in a secluded place away from the rest of society, and were forbidden from seeing their family members and friends. Since leprosy was incurable, those who had it often died alone.
The physical disease of leprosy is not unlike our spiritual condition. Leprosy only touches the body. But sin and its consequences go deeper to the heart and soul. Leprosy keeps those ridden with the disease separated from society, and likewise sin keeps us separated from God.
When Jesus entered the lepers’ village, they cried out to Him to have mercy on them and to heal them of their disease. When Jesus saw their situation, He instantly felt their pain and healed them of their condition. Verse 14 of Luke 17 says, “And when he saw them, he said unto them, Go shew yourselves unto the priests. And it came to pass, that as they went, they were cleansed.” As the lepers went to show themselves to the priests, they realized that as they were walking, they were healed.
While they obviously were excited about their healing, only one remembered where his healing came from. He did not continue on to the temple. He did not hurry to his family and show them that he was healed. He immediately turned around and went back to Jesus Christ. He fell down at Jesus’ feet and thanked Him. Verses 15 and 16 state, “And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan.”
It was interesting that only the Samaritan returned to thank Him. None of the Jewish lepers did. Verses 17 and 18 read, “And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine? There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger.” Only one of the ten lepers returned to show the gratitude and appreciation that Jesus Christ deserved.
Just like the ten lepers were healed of their physical disease, you can be healed of your spiritual disease called sin. And just like one leper returned to Jesus to say thanks, you, too, can have something to thank Jesus for as well. If you are sick of your sin and want to be healed and have the blessing of spending eternal life with Jesus Christ in Heaven, you must trust Jesus Christ as your Savior. It is only through Him that you will be saved from sin and the punishment of sin in Hell, and this is the greatest thing to be thankful for.
Here’s how you can be saved from sin and hell and have a home in heaven when you die.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! Congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door.” Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
Believe by faith. Share the faith. And keep the faith! God Bless You!