The Untouchables

In the 50’s, Eliot Ness was the leader of a legendary team of law enforcement agents nicknamed “The Untouchables.” But in Bible days lepers were also known as the “untouchables” because of their dreaded disease. Pardon my words, but I was “touched” as I read, “When he was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him. And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed…” (Matthew 8:1-4). It seems the leper’s name, past history, age, length of disease, and family life are omitted. It simply states, “There came a leper.” But the surprising words were, “And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him.” Lepers were not to be touched. They were the untouchables. This means this leper probably had not been touched in years. As he walked the streets, he must cry, “Unclean, unclean.” People avoided him, and no one touched him. Not one person. Not even his wife or children. Not one friend. There was never a touch, not one. He probably desired to have handshakes, hugs, embraces, pats, or a kiss. But no one touched him. He was a leper. He was an outsider and not permitted in public places, the synagogues, or even into his own home. He was untouchable. His disease caused flesh to decay and fall off. His skin would be blotched, discolored and stink. Leprosy slowly lead to loss of fingers, toes or even a foot or hand. Leprosy was slow death by decay. He was quarantined, cast out, banished, and exiled to a leper colony. But this day, for the first time as a leper, someone touched him. Jesus Christ touched the untouchables. “And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him.” The Lord responded to those who repulsed others. His touch immediately changed the leper’s life. That same “touch” still continues. How do I know? Because He changed my life in 1958. The greatest testimony to the world is still a changed and consistent Christian life. Multitudes of all ages, countries, and walks of life are still being changed (II Cor. 5:17). The Lord can also touch and change your life, if you will (repent) turn to Him and believe and receive Him as your Saviour. “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name” (John 1:12). No one is ever the same after His touch and no one is “untouchable” including you. His touch can also change your life.

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