WHERE ARE THE NINE?
“And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine?” Luke 17:17
Life would never be the same for these ten lepers. As they met the Lord, they cried out that He might have mercy on them, and He healed them all. Interestingly enough, when it was discovered that they were made whole, only one returned to give the Savior thanks. The Bible records that with a loud voice this grateful man glorified God that he had been cleansed of this dreaded disease. In our Scripture, Jesus asked the simple question, “but where are the nine?”
How can this be explained? How can a person be healed of such a dreaded disease, and not be thankful? We cannot answer that question as far as the lepers go, but we must make certain that we deal with this tendency as far as our personal lives are concerned. There are no justifiable reasons for the behavior of these lepers, just as there are none for us. And yet, if we are to be honest, we see this same ungratefulness demonstrated in our world.
We know of many who profess to be Christians who show no evidence of genuine and consistent gratitude. The disease that they claim to have been cleansed of is many times worse than leprosy. They testify to have been cleansed of their sins through the death of Jesus Christ on the cross. Jesus came from Heaven, lived a sinless life, and then bled and died at Calvary that their sins might be forgiven. These ungrateful souls were on their way to a devil’s hell to spend an eternity in torment. They received eternal life as a free gift, costing them nothing, but costing God everything. They boast of an eternal home in the splendors of Heaven all because of the mercy and grace of Almighty God. And yet, they find it impossible to be faithful and publicly worship God on a regular basis. They are not willing to serve God in any real capacity, and certainly refuse to give their money to God to finance the work of missions and gospel ministry.
WHERE ARE THE NINE? Where are these who have been touched by the tender hand of Jesus, never to be the same again? I do not know where they are, but I know where I want to be. I intend to be named with that single leper who could not contain his gratitude. May we lift grateful voices in praise and thanks to His name and present our lives as living sacrifices to honor and serve Him forever.