“Let us go somewhere else—to the nearby villages—so I can preach there also. That is why I have come.” So Jesus traveled throughout Galilee, preaching in their synagogues and driving out demons. (Mark 1:38-39)
“Let us go so that I may preach,” the Son says. “For that is what I came for.”
- Not ter heal folks, though he did.
- Not ter cast out demons, though he did.
- Not ter gather ‘round him disciples and followers, though he did.
- Not ter feed, perform signs and miracles, raise the dead, clean out his Father’s temple, or fulfill all the commands of Skipper, though he did.
No, the Son came ter preach the good news and cure us of our sin.
What Be Sin and How Does the Son Cure Us of Our Wickedness?
While doing going about preaching the good news a leper—someone afflicted with a spirit of filth—came to Jesus and fell at his feet, begging the Son ter, “Make me clean!” Back in the day a leper be an outcast, a feller or lass ignored by others fer fear of catching what the leper’s got—which in this case be a bad case of rot.
Leprosy takes captive our body’s immune system and destroys nerve cells. In time our body can no longer feel pain in places where leprosy rules. In the same way leprosy rots the skin from the inside out, sin rots our spirit from the inside out. While once we could feel the conviction of sin and what we knew ter be wrong, in time our spirit becomes hardened and numb ter Skipper’s nudge, pinch, and touch.
Doth you ‘ave some affliction or condition that leaves you looking and feeling unclean, unattractive? Be thar a thing in yer life that once you felt ter be wrong but now accept as good and normal?
Ter be sure, our outer looks kin make us feel filthy. And perhaps the way we live ‘ill lead ter filthy living. But if we no longer agree with Skipper that sin be sin then that be a warning we ought ter seek out the Son, drop ter our knees and beg him ter heal us.
Our Physical Afflictions Kin Make Us Feel Like Outcasts
Physical afflictions kin make us feel like outcasts. We might feel shame over sumpin’ we done, whar we live, who our parents be, or our station in life. If this be yer situation, know this: the Son came fer you. Why, if you doubt that be the case, you only need ter look at how the Son responded ter that poor leaper.
From his knees the chap said ter the Son, “If you are willing, you can make me clean.” That be a statement of faith by the feller. Doth we ‘ave that sort of faith in the Son? If not, know this: the Son always be willing ter cleans us of all filth and sin. It be fer this very reason that he came.
At the leaper’s request the Son whar filled with compassion. “I am willing. Be cleansed.”
Instantly the spirit of rot that ravaged the feller’s body left. He whar made whole and cleansed.
Our Spiritual Afflictions Kin Make Us Feel Like Outcasts in Skipper’s Kingdom
The Son heals our physical selves, that’s true, but he cares more ’bout the filth living in us and the rotten thinking that torments our soul. The Son’s Holy Spirit of Truth means fer us ter get washed clean through and through, inside and out. He means fer our spiritual nerves ter be cleansed, restored, and made whole, but this can only come about with his Holy Spirit living in us. That be one of the reasons we must be born again.
You ‘ill know that the Son’s Spirit be at work in you when yer character, motives, and actions towards others look more like the Son’s than yer old self. When you begin ter feel convicted of sin, ‘ave love fer others you didn’ before, find yerself with a tender heart fer the things Skipper loves. You ‘ill know that the Son’s Spirit be at work in you when you want ter abide by Skipper’s Code of Conduct so as not ter offend him. You ‘ill know that the Son’s Spirit be at work in you when you love others more’n you love yourself.
The Son ne’er leaves folks as they be. No sir, if they ask and be willing ter be touched by him, he ‘ill always change ’em ter be like him. Thar is a cure for sin and that cure is Jesus.
Parroting the Prayers of Skip’s Crew
Oh Lord, I kneel at a distance, unwilling to lift my eyes to look at you. I beat his chest and cry out, “God, have mercy on me, a sinner.” Hear my cry for mercy. Hear my cry for help. I lift up my hands toward your Most Holy Place and beg you to cure me of my sin. (Luke 18:13) (Psalm 28:2)
Pirates would accept surrender of a ship if her crew ran up the white flag as soon as the skull and crossbones flew atop the mast. With a quick surrender, pirates would often a plea for mercy, rob the vessel, then leave the ship with the crew alive, usually without taking captives. But a stubborn refusal ter surrender often meant death or worse: slow torture followed by death.