Eternal Life – God’s Mystery

12 And as he entered into a certain village, there met him ten men that were lepers, which stood afar off: 13 And they lifted up their voices, and said, Jesus, Master, have mercy on us. 14 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. 15 And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, 16 And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan. 17 And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine? 18 There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger. 19 And he said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole. Lk 17:12-19


“strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” (Mat. 7:14)

Only one man saw something different. One man out of ten. That is how difficult it is to see the things of the Spirit.

But first…

It is not written, but the sight of the lepers  standing “afar off” must have shattered Jesus’ heart into a thousand pieces. The compassion that this Man had knew no bounds. And when they begged Him, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us”, knowing He had the power to do what they asked Him to, He couldn’t have been more glad to oblige.

“Go shew yourselves unto the priests.” He spoke casually; but He was excited, for He knew the profound miracle that would befall them along the way.

“And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were cleansed.” (v.14)

Jesus was happy at their cleansing; yet nothing could send Jesus’s heart pounding harder than what happened next. Scripture tells us:

“15 And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, 16 And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan.”

The fact that scripture states that this man “turned back” indicates that he did not wait to arrive at the priests’ office. He had no more need of that. He had met God! And having met God, he became alive in his spirit.

The other men went rejoicing, of course. Not that they were thankless, no. They were very happy and thankful. But where, pray, do you think they went? To the priests, of course. They were going to show the physical miracle that had been done for them. These men saw nothing besides the miracle that was done for their bodies.

But their compatriot turned back and came and worshiped the living God. Bye, bye priests!

This man saw something the others did not. As they say, what you see is what you get. For that reason, therefore, Jesus told the man,

“… thy faith hath made thee whole.” (v.19)

We can finally perceive what true faith is. It is seeing into the Spirit. Jesus was now not talking about physical wholeness. That had already been accomplished. Here Jesus was talking about spiritual wholeness. This is the greatest gift a man can receive from God.

When we see God, we get done with the law! Our spirits become alive!! We are free men and women. That means we can worship God in truth and in the Spirit, for the life of God resides in us.

We ought to endeavour to go for the life of God. Christ’s life in us. The Apostle Paul wrote,

“22 For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: 23 But we preach Christ crucified… 24 Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.” (1 Cor. 1:22-24)

Paul and those who worked with him did miracles, but they distanced themselves from the miracle ‘ministry’ and the wisdom seekers. They sought after the life of God in them instead.


“… and he was a Samaritan.”

Wow. This man was not a Jew. Jesus called him a “stranger”.

The people in greatest danger of not receiving the life of Christ are, sadly, those of us who claim to be saved.  The problem is, we tend to think in terms of entitlement. For this reason we take the grace of God in vain. But forget about all the rights you think you have in Christ. God’s Kingdom is for those who do not think anything of themselves. That is why Jesus told the Jews:

“If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth.” (Jn. 9:41)

Imagine that. Jesus told them it were far better if they had been blind!

The Apostle Paul said,

“I be nothing” (2 Cor. 12:11)

That was Paul’s perspective of himself.

Recently, I was drawn to read about an American preacher who wears $4,000 shoes. Y’know, just shoes. In America they call them celebrity preachers. I wondered what a man who wears $4,000 shoes thinks of himself.

But what does the healing of our spirits do for us?

We become men and women of grace, for the life of Christ works in us. In 1 Cor. 15:45, the Bible says:

“… the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.”

The last Adam, Jesus, was a life-giving Spirit. That is what we become when our hearts are touched and changed by the Master.

[A mother and her child arriving home in the evening]


Of Eternal Life and the Royal Priesthood

Of Eternal Life and Royal Priests


And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?

He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou?

And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.

And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live.

But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour?

And Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead.

And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.

And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side.

But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him,

And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him.

And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee.

Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves?

And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.  Lk 10:25-37


There are two things that I love about this story. One is the fact that the story of the Good Samaritan is associated with inheriting eternal life (verse 25). In other words, doing something as simple as this Samaritan did can guarantee you eternal life. That’s truly amazing.

But much of the time our flesh prevents us from doing the will of God in our lives.

I am sure you appreciate the fact that it is not like the priest and the Levite did not want to help the fallen man. I am sure they must have felt terribly distressed at the predicament facing the poor soul. Being men of the cloth, they must have prayed for him all the way to wherever they were going.

But it is clear that the situation in hand needed more than a prayer. Action was required. A substantial price was involved here. Someone needed to risk their lives to help this suffering man.

I tell you – I am not perfect myself – but I have been in situations where you could laugh with the bitterness of it all. People are so afraid to die to self!

Jesus said, “Do you want to inherit eternal life? Then get out there and do something. Don’t just pray, don’t just preach – GET OUT AND DO SOMETHING!”

Our claim to eternal life comes with a price. Indeed, I am convinced that it is in the inheriting of God’s Kingdom that we pay the highest price.

Notice that Jesus did not say, “A fellow Jew came down that way”. No, Jesus specifically picked out two men who were servants of God and ministers of the people of God. In the new covenant that we have with God every born-again believer is a priest. More even than the Levitical priesthood, the Bible calls us “a royal priesthood” (1 Pet. 2:9). What an incredibly high calling! And yet, again, what a stupendously huge responsibility!

The second thing that I love about this scripture is the total, unconditional love that the Samaritan showed to the wounded man. If ever the word “compassion” needed a description, the attitude and actions of this good man embody it fully.

We can clearly see a revelation of the cross and the grace of God in the life of this Samaritan. For him it was not even a matter of risking his life. On the contrary, he counted his life as lost. It was crucified with Christ’s, and he counted himself dead with Christ. Oh, if only we could arrive there!

Only through identifying his life with Christ’s could this man be able to show true compassion to his neighbor. I deliberately use the word “true” here because there are things of men and there are things of God. True things are only those that come from God. For compassion to be true it must be born of God.

When we carry the true love of Christ in our hearts we will minister to people totally and unconditionally. We won’t tell them things like, “Don’t be so dumb next time!”

There are people hurting all around us. Some hurts we see, some we don’t. But I can assure you that when we are living a life of denial to self and taking our cross and following Jesus, God Himself will lead us to hurting souls and we will be able to give them our all, totally and unconditionally.

We see such a spirit of nobility in this Samaritan. He did not speak or do one negative thing to the man he had helped. Nor did one negative thought cross his mind. His whole attitude was one of true royalty. A royal priest.

A song by Keith Green.