Why is leprosy talked about so much in the Bible?


Clarify Share Report Asked July 01 2013 Mini Anonymous (via GotQuestions)

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Shea S. Michael Houdmann Supporter Got Questions Ministries
In the Bible, the word leprosy is mentioned upwards of 40 times, depending on the Bible version being used. Leprosy was common in Bible times, and the many references to it were well understood by ...

July 01 2013 6 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini Fran Joa Interested in God and hopeful
Could it be that the Bible talks a lot about leprosy because it represents something important? Let me explain what I mean by sharing what I think is the most important leprosy story in Scripture - the story in Luke 17:11-19 where Jesus heals ten men with leprosy. 

This story is a striking illustration of the loving plan of God and our Savior Jesus. According to R. M. Edgar, the leper story is analogous of human beings being spiritually dead as a result of sin and having only one way for redemption—through Christ Jesus. 

In Edgar’s commentary, he makes three main points:

1)	“As soon as the disease is suspected, the person is to go, or be brought, not to a physician, but to one of the priests.” 

2)	“The priest, in investigating the disease, is to ascertain whether it is superficial or vital.”

3)	“The penalty of pronounced leprosy is a living death, and a consequent exclusion from the camp of God.”

So the disease of leprosy represents sin, the inflicted—the sinner, which if not divinely cured would be terminal—separation from God for eternity.

The Old Testament book of Leviticus details the handling of leprosy. It hints of the necessity of humility and confession of one’s shortcomings by mandating that the leper cry out, ‘Unclean! Unclean!’ (Lev. 13:45). This is reminiscent of sinners humbling themselves before God and confessing their sin.

The spiritual message is clear: As sinners we are unclean (diseased humans, dead from sin) with only ONE Divine Physician—Jesus.

To live eternally with God requires the confession of sin and going face to face with Christ Jesus who is our high priest (Hebrews 2:17)—the ONLY one who can make us clean. 

By the grace of God and our faith in the saving blood of Jesus, we have been washed clean. And we know from the words of Jesus (Luke 17:18) that we are expected to return with a grateful heart and thank God. (Excerpt from the “Right to the Soul Bible Study Guide.”) 

Hope that helps.

September 14 2021 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Seth3 Seth Freeman
Because it was a prevalent disease at the time. We don't see it around much here because of modern medicine. But it was a disease that they could relate to quite well. It was pretty much terrible.

August 13 2013 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini Evan Doan
Contrary to popular belief, biblical leprosy is not Hansen's disease (modern leprosy), but rather what we call candidiasis, dermatophytosis, or ringworm. In other words, a skin fungal infection. It doesn't take long to find medical literature discussing skin fungal infections that literally uses the exact same descriptions as Leviticus. Furthermore, the leprosy of clothing and in the walls of homes perfectly match mold and mildew, as well.

In addition to leprosy, implications of fungi arise for the Feast of Unleavened Bread, as well, aka Feast of Unfermented Food. In biblical times, the only leavening agent they had to use was yeast, which is a type of fungus (bacteria also ferments, but is arguably virtually impossible to manipulate or control). On the Passover afternoon of the crucifixion, John 19:30 specifically states that when Jesus received the sour wine, (vinegar, or a full spectrum product of fermentation) he said "It is finished" and gave up his spirit. So his receipt of vinegar was precisely when he died.

So, the question is, why is the fungus among us such a big deal?

The scriptures don't explicitly tell us, but my own speculations are that fungi constitute the mechanism by which we return to the dust. Originally, fungi were intended to recycle biological waste in the ground. However, once death became part of reality, fungi are now literally the mechanism by which God's statement in Genesis 3:19 manifests. Biologists claim that without fungi, the earth would be littered with carcasses everywhere.

Just some food for thought...

October 10 2018 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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