Cleanse Me, Please!

A Bible Exposition Of Mark 1:40-45

There are two examples of Jesus healing a leper in the New Testament. This account in Mark, which is also recorded by Matthew and Luke, and then the time when Jesus heals ten lepers in one fell swoop in Luke 17.

But Jesus healed lepers regularly.

Mark records this account to teach several things. First and foremost is Jesus uncontested authority of life and death and all of creation. To heal someone from leprosy was as difficult as raising someone from the dead. So when Jesus cured this leper, He did the impossible.

In this record, we see the compassionate heart of Jesus. We see his willingness to associate himself with weakness and human suffering. We see his earthly ministry and the practical challenges He faced to His ministry of proclamation as His fame spread throughout Galilee as a “miracle-worker.”

And yet leprosy is a profound illustration of the corruption of our souls. As leprosy rendered the physical man crippled and destitute, unable to become clean, so sin corrupts the spiritual man, leaving him crippled and unable to self-reform. Praise God that Jesus cleanses sinners!

6 Parts to the Story of Jesus Cleansing a Leper

  1. The suffering creature (40a)
  2. The shameless claim (40b)
  3. The sympathetic cleansing (41-42)
  4. The sharp constraint (43-44)
  5. The swift carelessness (45a)
  6. The significant cost (45b)

Mark 1:40–45—40 And a leper came to Jesus, beseeching Him and falling on his knees before Him, and saying, “If You are willing, You can make me clean.” 41 Moved with compassion, Jesus stretched out His hand and touched him, and said to him, “I am willing; be cleansed.” 42 Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cleansed. 43 And He sternly warned him and immediately sent him away, 44 and He said to him, “See that you say nothing to anyone; but go, show yourself to the priest and offer for your cleansing what Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.” 45 But he went out and began to proclaim it freely and to spread the news around, to such an extent that Jesus could no longer publicly enter a city, but stayed out in unpopulated areas; and they were coming to Him from everywhere.

This Bible Exposition was preached at Cornerstone Bible Church in Albany, Oregon on December 11, 2016.