The Northfield

  2535 Shore Road

  Northfield, NJ 08225

  (609)646-1181

Church of Christ

08/20/2009

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He Had Leprosy


"Now Naaman was commander of the army of Aram. He was a great man in the sight of his master and highly regarded, because through him the Lord had given victory to Aram. He was a valiant soldier, but he had leprosy" (2 Kings 5:1).

Because we are highly regarded, whether by family, church or community, we are not exempted from the same problems that everyone faces. Nor does our "goodness" necessarily put us under the grace of God. Naaman, a great man, was a leper. In those days leprosy had the stigma carried with it that AIDS had when it was discovered. A hope was given to Naaman however in the form of a young captive Israelite girl who was a servant to his wife. "If only my master would see the prophet (Elisha) who is in Samaria. He would cure him of the leprosy" (3 & 4). There was a possible reprieve for his death sentence in the form of the Lord.

Morality, fame or greatness will no more save us than it could save Naaman from leprosy. Elisha's messenger told him to dip seven times in the Jordan River to be cured. Used to being in charge, Naaman was insulted first that Elisha did not come to him face to face. He was also upset with the choice of rivers. There were two perfectly good rivers in Damascus that he felt were much better than the Jordan. The instructions however were specific ones. The conditions for healing were based on these conditions and Naaman's faith to believe them. Our promise to enjoy the blessings of God also come with conditions. We are told that Naaman "went away angry." Here he was, a man with leprosy, being offered an "out" by God, and he wanted it on his conditions, not the Lord's. Being angry with God's will is like smashing the mirror or scale because we do not like what they tell us!

Naaman's mind set was "I thought." He thought that he could just "call on the name of the Lord his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy" (11). "We live by faith not by sight" (2 Cor. 5:7). If we are to come into compliance with God, it cannot be by opinion or conjecture, but only by the truth of His Word. We can't substitute these any more than Naaman could substitute the Abana and Pharpar for the Jordan. Naaman was healed when he obeyed God and met His conditions. We can only find the joy of God through His Son and His saving words. Jesus said, "Not everyone who says to me Lord, Lord, will enter into the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven" (Matt. 7:21). We just need to do what He says.......

Have a wonderful day...Let your light shine brightly for Him..... Love mark Phil. 4:11

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