a dear friend of mine posted this on a private board i frequent, and i thought it was a great question to pose to my friends here: (in following Jesus down that narrow road...)
is believing the most important thing? is obeying the crucial part?
believing * obeying * acknowledging to me are three key ingredients.
take the ten lepers, for instance. all ten were healed -
Luke 17:12-19 As he was entering a village, ten lepers met (him). They stood at a distance from him and raised their voice, saying, "Jesus, Master! Have pity on us!" And when he saw them, he said, "Go show yourselves to the priests." As they were going they were cleansed. And one of them, realizing he had been healed, returned, glorifying God in a loud voice; and he fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked him. He was a Samaritan.
Jesus said in reply, "Ten were cleansed, were they not? Where are the other nine? Has none but this foreigner returned to give thanks to God?" Then he said to him, "Stand up and go; your faith has saved you."
so belief in Jesus healed all 10 lepers who, by the way, were all considered outcasts unclean. *as they were going* showed their obedience; showing themselves to the priests would prove they were again able to filter back into society because they were no longer *unclean* all ten were cured but yet, only one acknowledged Who He Was and thanked Him; that's what saved him. (i wonder if the other 9 made it into heaven?)
the next one that comes to mind is the woman with the issue of the blood.
Mark 5:25 - There was a woman afflicted with hemorrhages for twelve years. She had suffered greatly at the hands of many doctors and had spent all that she had. Yet she was not helped but only grew worse. She had heard about Jesus and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak. She said, "If I but touch his clothes, I shall be cured." Immediately her flow of blood dried up. She felt in her body that she was healed of her affliction.
Jesus, aware at once that power had gone out from him, turned around in the crowd and asked, "Who has touched my clothes?" But his disciples said to him, "You see how the crowd is pressing upon you, and yet you ask, 'Who touched me?'" And he looked around to see who had done it. The woman, realizing what had happened to her, approached in fear and trembling. She fell down before Jesus and told him the whole truth. He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has saved you. Go in peace and be cured of your affliction." (emphasis added again...)
this to me is really an interesting and cool story because from the commentaries i have read, having the *issue of blood* was a *female* issue and would have made her ritually unclean, so i think that is why she held back in making herself known. it would have *stained* Jesus, from her (and levitical law) perspective. but He is so cool, He wants her to come forth and by avering what she has done and why - in obedience, she comes forward, told Him the whole truth (acknowledging) He pronounces her saved and cured of her affliction.
what are your thoughts? i'd love to hear them.
as an additional thought: all ten lepers knew who He was, yet only one said thank you and fell at His feet - what does that say about the Christians of today? are we, too, lukewarm and some of us, *know* who He is but fail to fall at His feet on a daily basis?
fail to thank Him for all He has done?