The New Healing
Luke, the only Evangelist to tell us of the ten lepers cleansed by Jesus (17:11–19), tells the story succinctly, but with enough details to make it unforgettable.
Jesus is apparently passing through the border territory shared by Galilee and Samaria. Consequently, those around him are a somewhat mixed crowd, predominantly Galileans but with some Samaritans in the group. Jesus comes to a village.
A handful of lepers, standing afar off, shout out to him, "Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!" These lepers are standing afar off because they are not permitted to enter into the village itself. They remain just outside the city limits. They can approach no closer, but their voices reach the ears of Jesus. They plead with him, "Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!"
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Patrick Henry Reardon is pastor emeritus of All Saints Antiochian Orthodox Church in Chicago, Illinois, and the author of numerous books, including, most recently, Out of Step with God: Orthodox Christian Reflections on the Book of Numbers (Ancient Faith Publishing, 2019).
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