First Christian Reformed Church || Lynden

Seven Ducks in a Muddy River

The scene opens in the foreign country of Syria, north and east of Israel. Syria was a powerful enemy of Israel and this story takes place during a brief period of peace or cease-fire. We are in Damascus, the great and beautiful capital city of Syria. Here we meet the principle character. Naaman was a five star general, a Patton, a MacArthur, a Schwartzkoph; the commander and chief of all the military forces of Syria. He was second only to King Ben Hadad II. We are told that he was a mighty man of valor; a great man held in high regard. He was the king’s right hand man and chief counsel. He was also a man of great wealth. He had a palace in the nicest suburb of Damascus, with a three-chariot garage, stables, servants and all the rest. Having said all this about the man, the last five words of verse 1 change everything, “but, he was a leper.” The impact of those words is like saying he had AIDS. Naaman was as great as the world could make him and yet there wasn’t a soul in Damascus, even the poorest outcast, that would trade skin with him to gain everything else he had. Naaman is a Scriptural picture of the human condition, of you and me. No matter how great or talented, gifted or exceptional, successful, or put together or intelligent, there is a “but” in our life. All of us have our leprosy, our calamity, our crisis, our personal brokenness, most of all our spiritual leprosy, that four-letter word that only has three letters - SIN. Our leprosy is personal and national.
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