Archive for the ‘leprosy’ Category

      Whether Jesus had foreknowledge of his resurrection before it occurred is a topic, today, along with more on Naaman the Leper. A “Yahoo! Answers” writer using the ID “fixer29” (Level 4 with 2,680 points, November 16, 2010) posted the following:

Did Jesus know He was going to be resurrected before He was crucified?

Or did it come as a huge surprise when He woke up in a cave three days later?

THE BATTLE AXE: Naaman the Leper (12/21/2012)—Just as the miraculous healing of Naaman followed his obedience, only after obedience do believers receive authority, gratitude, joy, trust, understanding, and the imparted, indwelling spirit of GOD (we say, the Holy Spirit, the Comforter, the Spirit of Truth, the Spirit of Prophecy). All believers begin without full knowledge of the Gospel, and the things given from GOD. There must be inquiry, study, decision, death and resurrection (through baptism), confirmations of faith, and continuous change by spiritual growth. Once healed of otherwise incurable disease (leprosy is sin), Naaman becomes a figure of the divinely reborn who minister to mankind by sharing the Gospel of Christ. The prophet refuses the offer of payment and earthly rewards; however, his servant, Gehazi, pursues Naaman, and seeks reward through deception and lying. As a result, the servant receives the curse of Naaman’s leprosy upon himself, and upon his own future generations. As a minister to the prophet in the way Joshua attended Moses, Gehazi was one who stands in witness to the operation and presence of GOD, and one who has received such divine gifts as covenant, deliverance, law, and priesthood. Gehazi’s covetousness, presumption, and violation of trust is like that of one who hears the Gospel message, and despises the promises and spiritual gifts preferring outward appearance (e.g., changes of raiment), influence, wealth and worldly power.

THE GOLDEN ARROW: Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee. Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again. Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day. Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this? She saith unto him, Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world. (John 11: 21-27, King James Version)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: A Holy Kiss? (11/13/2012); Life and Death (09/26/2012); What He Died For (09/14/2012); Chances for Change (09/15/2012); Begotten not Made (09/08/2012); About False Witness (09/09/2012); Why Jesus Prayed (08/19/2012); How Life Exists (08/20/2012); Girdle 50: Unquenchable Life (01/06/2012)

      In addition to a record of the doctrines and teachings from GOD the Father that Jesus proclaimed by his ministry as an orthodox rabbi, the Scriptures identify many of the prophesies he carried out and performed as well as the declarations of his personal conviction and faith. Even knowledge for some of the most “private” prayers of Jesus have been provided to believers through the Holy Spirit (see Luke 11: 1-4 and John 17, King James Version). Jesus was familiar with the events and portents surrounding his birth; and, being human, he endured a continual struggle to acquire a mature comprehension, and complete acceptance of sacred truth (see Matthew 25: 20-46 and Mark 14: 13-42, KJV).

      Jesus lived in a society that had many divisions, errors, and faith eroding secular influences. Even among the elders and leaders of the Temple community (often called “the Jews” in Scripture), there were disbelievers and factions driven by human error, politics, and pride. Being anchored in faith, humility, obedience and prayer, Jesus acknowledged and demonstrated to all the proper duty for a son of GOD (see Luke 4: 16-21 and Matthew 11: 1-6, KJV). The holy writings were the most widely available and shared presentation of doctrine, and provided all the necessary elements for the common acceptance of salvation through Christ. Thus, Jesus and his followers preached and proclaimed the truths of his birth, death, burial and resurrection as fulfillment of prophecy, and things of the holy record, rather than the accomplishment of private goals and purposes (see Luke 24: 1-31, KJV).

      There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, how we experience events in our divine spirit, or in our human imagination and thoughts are at a very different level than events in our flesh and material reality. The events of the Lord’s Passion included many unexpected details, jolts and unanticipated traumas. For example, his expectation (i.e., hope) probably did not include seeing his mother stand before him at the foot of the cross.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIXWashington, DC

      The Bible’s account of Naaman as a parable is the topic today, along with more on GOD in public schools. The “Yahoo! Answers” Top Contributor using the ID “Camille” (Level 7 with 141,507 points, a member since March 18, 2009) posted the following:

Naaman comes to Elisha because he is a leper how did he get healed of the leprosy and was he obedient to God?II Kings 5:1-15

Namaan, commander of the army of the king of Syria, was a great and honorable man: Naaman was the chief military commander of a persistent enemy to both Israel and Judah.

But a leper: Naaman had a lot going for him, but what he had against him was devastating.

THE BATTLE AXE: GOD in Schools? (12/20/2012)—Many aspects of divine covenant have been copied and imperfectly incorporated into the law and lifestyle of America as a Nation. As a result, many of our public programs can encourage and supplement home and church to establish our children as godly persons, however, agencies having no endowment of the Holy Spirit can never provide, replace or surpass the necessary lessons from GOD. The idea of GOD in schools through daily prayer derives from belief that prayer should be practiced freely without restrictions upon physical location, time or topic. Therefore, prayer may be offered spontaneously and apart from formal, congregational worship. Behavior and conduct that defile young people must be eliminated from the schools along with all that is irreverent and profane. However, as a sacred process, prayer, like judgment, is not the same for believers within the body and others who are outside the faith (see 1st Corinthians 5: 11-13, KJV). The sanctuary of a church as the gathering place where believers acknowledge the divine presence is cleansed and set apart for the appearance of GOD, and for worship by the prayers of the assembly. The same benefit is desired for our schools; yet, secular goals, public policy, and standard procedures do not generate, or serve as legitimate authority and parameters for prayer. The demand for prayer in schools generated by man must be seen as distinct from the demands for obeisance made by the Holy Spirit. The churches are cautioned against being deceived, and the making of vain oblations (Luke 21: 8, 1st Corinthians 6: 9 and 15: 32-34, Galatians 6: 7 and Isaiah 1: 13, KJV). Consider again: Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also. Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier. And if a man also strive for masteries, yet is he not crowned, except he strive lawfully. (2nd Timothy 2: 1-4, KJV).

THE GOLDEN ARROW: And he said unto them, Ye will surely say unto me this proverb, Physician, heal thyself: whatsoever we have heard done in Capernaum, do also here in thy country. And he said, Verily I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country. But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elias, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land; But unto none of them was Elias sent, save unto Sarepta, a city of Sidon, unto a woman that was a widow. And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Eliseus the prophet; and none of them was cleansed, saving Naaman the Syrian. And all they in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with wrath, (Luke 4: 23-28, KJV)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Dispatch 36: His Grace (09/15/2011); Respect? (01/02/2011); Not Accepted? (01/03/2011); Five Minutes? (12/27/2010); The Ark of GOD (12/28/2010); Things? (11/13/2010); When at Work… (11/08/2010); Faith and History (11/09/2010)

      For many mature Christian believers, the history of Naaman the leper serves as a parable (object lesson) wherein the warrior represents mankind in continual strivings finally becoming defiled and infirm through sin (leprosy). Despite his fame as a savior to the Syrians, Naaman must submit to the Holy One of Israel for change that is salvation (e.g., cleansing, forgiveness, healing, repentance, and restoration).

      Humility and obedience are shown to be the foundation for faith when Naaman is told to go bathe in the Jordan River. The great man has been sent having letters of commendation from his king; however, the prophet does not receive him with ceremony. Naaman becomes angry at being denied the formalities and “respect of person” due his various offices as ambassador, general, and prime minister to his king (the right-hand-man, so to speak). In his rage, he begins to curse the Jordan River and all Israel, instead, praising several rivers of his homeland, Syria.

      Salvation is shown to come by our performance of simple acts in cooperation with the profound acts of GOD on our behalf. When cautioned by his servants, Naaman is led to serve, and performs the task of dipping himself in the water seven times. (The number seven signifies completeness and perfection.) Naaman did all that he could possibly do. The washing by water is understood as baptism. That healing alone is not sufficient is depicted in what happens next. Naaman requests a dispensation that he would be forgiven when, continuing to obey his king, Naaman would escort him into a place of idol worship. In this, the account of Naaman acknowledges that divine salvation that removes fear, sin and spiritual uncleanness does not remove automatically the duties, obligations, or physical and practical realities necessary to our being in the world.

      There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, the figure of Naaman may be seen as repeated in Simon the leper (Matthew 26: 6-7 and Mark 14; 3, KJV). That Jesus, the disciples, and others were able to attend a feast in Simon’s home, testifies that Simon had been healed of leprosy. However, here, instead of the dread disease, leprosy may have been excommunication from the worship community for being a publican, one who regularly interacted with, and served Gentiles (i.e., the Romans). ) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC