and said to him, “Be careful not to say anything to anyone; but go and show yourself to the priest, and make the offerings for your cleansing directed by Moses, as evidence of your cure
talk is cheap
Eliza asks to be shown
explanations bring forth
leaving confusion aplenty
evidence is not certainty
it is possible common ground
to further reflect together
show up is basic organizing
show off wounds opens compassion
show off healing shares thanks
secret action has power
revealed eschatology confirms power
common definition shifts decisions
The sternness continues. “Don’t you dare say anything to anyone about this!” “Beware the consequence of crossing me!”
With that reinforced, we find another strand being woven in—“Instead.”
Perhaps the former leper was not to talk locally, but travel all the way to Jerusalem to confront or witness to the priestly priests there. It will be penance to not only sacrifice there but to have to travel all that way.
On the one hand this would rub the leper in the face of the priest. See a healing did take place outside the usual boundaries of control. There is a new sheriff in town who is not part of the current cronies and will not be bought off.
On the other hand, Jesus is also hedging his bets with this show of honoring the laws of Moses as they are currently being interpreted (there is no original intent here as we are dealing with a Living G*D). While this cannot be seen as any more than a delaying tactic, it does buy some space for continuing to teach learners who have a long way to go.
Whichever way you tend to read this ambivalent instruction to be quiet and show off, we are beginning to sense that the anger karma is about to bite. Life is never as easy as, “I’m only going to say this once, so be sure you don’t mess up.” Sure enough, consequences are on their way.