Do you talk a lot or are you a person of few words? I’ve come to realize there seems to be a lot more talk about things in life than actions. It doesn’t matter if you’re fighting sex trafficking, trying to solve a problem in your business, discussing financial needs, or solving a problem among friends. There seems to be more words than anything. And as the old saying goes,
Actions speak louder than words!”
Jesus made the same point, but it was hidden at the end of a story we find in Matthew 8:1-4,
When He came down from the mountainside, large crowds followed Him. A man with leprosy came and knelt before Him and said, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.” Jesus reached out His hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” He said. “Be clean!” Immediately he was cured of his leprosy. Then Jesus said to him, “See that you don’t tell anyone. But go, show yourself to the priest and offer the gift Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.”
This man had been an outcast of society, bound and held captive by his disease. If you had leprosy in in the day, you were literally thrown out of the city where you lived. You lost your job, your family, your home, everything. You were considered unclean and in fact, if you ever came close to anyone else, you had to declare yourself unclean by yelling so out loud.
Can you imagine? Wasn’t it bad enough that you’d lost everything and everyone because of your condition, but then you had to broadcast it to the world. In today’s world, that would be like someone with AIDS walking around screaming AIDS, AIDS, AIDS every time they passed by a healthy person. It just seems wrong!
When I study a segment of scripture, I have a tendency to read it in a variety of translations to shed light on it. I love how the Message reads:
Jesus came down the mountain with the cheers of the crowd still ringing in His ears. Then a leper appeared and went to his knees before Jesus, praying, ‘Master, if you want to, you can heal my body.’ Jesus reached out and touched him, saying, ‘I want to. Be clean.’ Then and there, all signs of the leprosy were gone. Jesus said, ‘Don’t talk about this all over town. Just quietly present your healed body to the priest, along with the appropriate expression of thanks to God. Your cleansed and grateful life, not your words, will bear witness to what I have done.'”
Basically, don’t go around bragging about it, wasting time with words. Let your clean body and the way you live your life bear witness.
We have to ask ourselves a very important question,
Do our lives bear witness to what Jesus has done?”
If not, we may need to spend more time at the feet of Jesus. Others should be able to see the impact His work in our life has made. We should be able to go through life testifying to a transformed life without ever opening our mouth.