Unlimited: The Importance of Obedience
Oct 16, 2020 1775
Jesus sent him away at once with a strong warning: “See that you don’t tell this to anyone. But go, show yourself to the priest and offer the sacrifices that Moses commanded for your cleansing, as a testimony to them.”Instead he went out and began to talk freely, spreading the news. As a result, Jesus could no longer enter a town openly but stayed outside in lonely places. Yet the people still came to him from everywhere (Mark 1:43–45, NIV).
Just before these verses, Jesus just healed a man with leprosy. At Jesus’ word, and at his touch, the man was instantly healed.
After Jesus healed the leper, he gave him strict instructions not to speak about this to anyone. It’s natural for us to think that Jesus would want as many people to know who he was as soon as possible. But he didn’t.
The reason was that Jesus knew that the authorities in Jerusalem would try to kill him if he openly revealed who he was. That would have meant that the Son of Man wouldn’t have had the opportunity to spend time here, revealing the love and care of the Father to humanity. That’s why, for a time, Jesus didn’t announce his identity publicly.
But this leper didn’t follow Jesus’ instructions. He started telling everyone. As a result, Jesus was no longer able to go into the towns.
But wherever Jesus was, the people followed.
The leper actually harmed Jesus’ ministry because of his enthusiasm for Jesus.
– Eliezer Gonzalez
Eli’s Reflection: Think about your own religious experiences. Have you ever harmed the cause of Christ by being overly enthusiastic? How might you do things differently today? How is it important to listen keenly to God’s instruction in your life?