THE WEEK OF TRINITY XIV – THURSDAY
LESSON: JAMES 1:2‒8
When He saw them He said to them, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” Luke 17:14
In this Gospel we are given a very warm and friendly invitation to draw near to Christ, to put our faith and trust in Him. There is no doubt that He wants to do for everyone what He did for these lepers. All that is necessary is for us to cast ourselves freely upon Him in the expectation of receiving from Him all His grace and goodness.
In this regard, true faith and a Christian heart should act and does act as these lepers act and teach us to act. That it pleases Christ that we should joyfully and freely determine to build upon His goodness, even before we have experienced it or felt it, is sufficiently attested here in the way in which He so willingly lends an ear to them without any delay at all. Nor does He tell them that He is about to help them. He simply deals with them as if what they desired had already happened. He does not say to them, “Yes, I will have mercy on you; you will be clean.” He simply says, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.”
It is as though He says to them, “You do not have to make any entreaty. Your faith has already obtained and acquired what you want before you ask for it. You were already clean, as far as I was concerned, when you began to expect all this from Me. Nothing more is needed, then, but that you should go to show the priests that you have been cleansed. As I regard you, and as you believe, so you are and so you will be.” He would not have sent them to the priests had He not regarded them as clean.
Behold, how powerful faith is! It acquires everything it desires from God, and God regards it as accomplished even before it is asked for. Isaiah speaks of faith when he says, “Before they call I will answer, while they are yet speaking I will hear” (Isaiah 65:24).
PRAYER: Faith is the means whereby You bestow all Your blessings upon us, heavenly Father. When our faith is right, all is right with us as Your children. Preserve us and strengthen us in faith, in and through Christ, the author and finisher of our faith. Amen.