“The priest shall examine the disease...”
The duties of a Jewish priest were extremely difficult and time consuming. A priest was in charge of performing the daily sacrifices, overseeing the activities in the Tabernacle; maintaining a holy and clean life, and even examining people’s diseases.
One of these diseases was leprosy. Leprosy was a terrible malady that affected the skin, muscles and the nerves. Leprosy produced ulcers, white scaly scabs, tuberculosis, deformities and eventual paralysis. And the priest was required to examine leprous people. What a glamorous job!
Leprosy is considered a symbol of sin, based on its corruptive and destructive influence. Sin can deform a soul; paralyze a whole city; and bring death and destruction to a nation. Sin, like leprosy, is extremely contagious and propagates in any given community like wild fire in a forest.
The Christian community has a moral obligation to keep sin in check, just as the priests of old did with leprosy. To accomplish this, we must examine for signs of moral leprosy, and sinful trends in our society.
This examination or “deep look,” must not proceed out of mere curiosity or for the purpose of criticizing the “filthy pagans.” Our “priestly” look should be based on God’s love for humanity. When we look at sinners through God’s eyes, we would not have any other alternative but to love them. Instead of criticism, there would be prayer, and in the place of condemnation, they will find a helping hand.
Remember we must hate SIN, not the sinner.