«      »

Giving of thanks

by Zigfred Diaz

Several months ago, I was preparing for a Sunday sermon on thanksgiving. The Lord brought to my attention the Samaritan leper’s thanksgiving recorded in Luke 17 verses 11 to 19. This is a very familiar story among Christians. The story goes like this, there were 10 Samaritan lepers who asked Jesus for mercy. Jesus told them to show themselves to the priest. While going there, they found out that they were healed. Sadly, only one of them came back to thank Jesus.

Being a firm believer in expository preaching, I dug deep into the greek words used in the text. I looked up the greek words for “Thanks.” The word here is the word “eucharisteo.” This is where we get our word for “Eucharist.” Eucharisteo is also the same word used in the Gospels when Christs gives thanks for a meal. In the Epistles, the apostle Paul often uses this same word

Interestingly enough, eucharisteo literally means eu = good, well + a form of charis = to favor or thank; to respond to a good favor. Eucharisteo is also used as the verbs form of “favor” or “Charis” in Greek, the modern translation being “Grace.”

Looking at the Greek words and the Gospel story, it finally dawned on me that the Lepers were asking for “Mercy” but for one leper he got “Grace” instead, and he was responding to it thankfully.

There is a big difference between “Mercy” and “Grace” although we sometimes we used them interchangeably. But in reality they are not the same. To simply point out the difference, note that Mercy is “not getting what you deserve.” Grace on the other hand is “getting what you don’t deserve.” The difference is not just a matter of semantics. There is a huge difference between the two. Because of our sins we deserve to go to Hell. But because of God’s mercy we are spared from the punishment of hell. However the reason why we receive eternal life is only because of grace. We do not deserve the eternal life granted to us through the death Jesus Christ, but we received it because of GRACE.

Scripture tells us in Ephesians chapter 2 verse 8 and 9 that “For by Grace are you saved through faith, it is the gift of God, not works lest any man should boast” The gift being reffered to here is “Saving faith.” What this verse is trying to tell us is that even the faith to believe in Jesus Christ is given to us by God. We are so depraved that by ourselves alone we do not have the natural ability to believe the promises of God. What we have is only natural faith. “Super natural faith” is required before we could fully understand what salvation in Christ truly means.

Thanks be to God for giving us “Supernatural faith,” for the faith to believe. Truly it is not because of our own natural ability that we have the faith to believe in Christ, it is only because of Him alone.

Because he realized that he was given this unmerited favor, the Samaritan Leper was so thankful that he “turned back and with a loud voice glorified God, and fell down on his face at His feet, giving Him thanks”

He was then asked by Jesus Christ, “”Were there not ten cleansed? But where are the nine? There are none found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger.”

And I love this last part, Jesus continues and tells him “Arise; go thy way. Thy faith hath made thee whole.” Literally he is saying to this Samaritan Leper “Your faith has saved you.”

Truly, the Samaritan Leper got more than what he asked for. He asked for mercy but he got grace instead and with that salvation. Being truly thankful is certainly is worth it !

About the Author:

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

  • Stay Up to Date with TheHolyStory News!
    Get Your TheHolyStory News here!
    * indicates required
  • Categories
  • Search the Net from here!
    Custom Search
WP Flex by WP Queen
Wordpress theme developed by Simpler Computing and others - Wordpress and WPMU Plugins, custom code and more.