“Then the priest shall come and look, and, behold, if the plague be spread in the house, it is a fretting leprosy in the house: it is unclean” (Leviticus 14:44).TEXT — Leviticus 14:33-57
Almost every age has had its social outcasts, people barred from society, whether through physical illness or national origin. One person who stepped across these barriers in India was pioneer missionary Mary Reed. Already working in India, Mary visited a leper colony and was deeply moved by the people’s plight. Later Mary contracted leprosy herself and went to work with the lepers, eager to tell them that she knew firsthand their pain and trauma. She became head of the leper colony she had visited and in the years following, many were saved and a church built. Mary retired at the age of eighty-four after many years of faithful service to these social outcasts (Today in the word, January 1990).
Today’s passage deals with the management of leprosy in the house by the Old Testament priests. First, the case of suspected leprosy outbreak in the house was reported to the priest. He goes in for an assessment. If after changing the affected blocks or stones and replacing the plaster, the plague stops, then the house is declared clean and a mandatory cleansing ceremony that involved the use of two birds, cedar wood, scarlet and hyssop is done. Should evidence of the plague return after the initial action taken, the whole house will be demolished to prevent leprosy from spreading into other houses in the community; and all in the house will be cleansed according to the requirement of the law.
The Lord had to commit the task of dealing with lepers to the priests, His ministers, because they are consecrated to care for the needy with love while taking their needs to God in prayers.
As believers, we are to visit the outcasts, take care of the poor and the widows in their afflictions while keeping ourselves unspotted from the world (James 1:27). We should avoid getting contaminated with sins regarded as spiritual leprosy.
Thought for the day
Preach to sinners, care for the sick but avoid any defilement.
- in one year
- ISAIAH 9 – 12