(Mark 1:40-45 ESV)
1. Why did Jesus tell the man not to talk about what he did?
2. Why did the man not honour Jesus' request?
I don't know if we can ever answer those questions as it is not contained within the biblical record and would just be conjecture.
What we do know is this.
1. A man came to Jesus asking for help with his leprosy.
2. Jesus took pity on him.
3. Jesus said "be clean" and the man was.
4. Jesus told him, tell no one, go to the priests and show them you are clean.
5. When the man left he ignored what Jesus said and told everyone about it.
6. Jesus' ministry to people was forever changed. He had to go out into desolate places in order to teach and heal.
I suppose in someways I can understand the man doing as he did. He was suffering from a disease that banned him from towns, making him shout unclean, unclean to any who came near, not being able to be with his family. He comes to Jesus for healing and then WOW!!! He's all better. The chance taken turned out better than hoped for and WOW!!! he's healed!!! No more shame and isolation!!!!!
I get it.
And I've just had an epiphany moment.
Jesus would have known his response (being as he is God)....but still took pity on him. He still healed him. He healed him KNOWING that the man wouldn't listen to him about being quiet.
And yet he acted. He didn't let that knowing affect his action.
Isn't that what we are called to do? Act? Even if our action changes our future ministry? Even if our act doesn't bear the fruit we desire. We are simply called to act.
So if God says "give your coat" to thus and such a person and they end up selling it for a less than positive reason.. shouldn't we still act? If we give a sandwich to a person who doesn't like and tosses it away, shouldn't we still act? If we are asked, or called to do something, we should simply have pity and act...even if the end result makes life more difficult. That's what Jesus did. Shouldn't we do the same?
Shouldn't I do the same?