If you had a painful, life-threatening disease, what measures would you be willing to take to be cured? What if you could be guaranteed a complete removal of the disease from your body as well as a full recovery – would you be willing to do whatever was necessary to achieve this outcome? I believe any reasonable person would say, “Yes, of course I would!”
In 2 Kings 5, we read of a man named Naaman who was a leper. Leprosy was a very terrible and painful disease that would spread throughout the body and often claim its victim. Naaman traveled to Israel to the house of Elisha, the prophet of God, to be healed of his leprosy. Elisha sent word for him saying, “Go and wash in the Jordan seven times, and your flesh shall be restored, and you shall be clean” (2 Kings 5:10).
Those instructions sound plain, simple, and easy to comply with, right? But Naaman became furious because the prophet did not heal him of his leprosy the way he had envisioned (2 Kings 5:11). Furthermore, he believed that the rivers in his homeland were better than all the waters of Israel. He angrily asked, “Could I not wash in them and be clean?” (2 Kings 5:12)
As he was leaving, “his servants came near and spoke to him, and said, ‘My father, if the prophet had told you to do something great, would you not have done it? How much more then, when he says to you, ‘Wash, and be clean’?” (2 Kings 5:13, NKJV)
So, what would you be willing to do to be cleansed of sin? As much as we treasure our physical life, how much more should we value the eternal soul (Matthew 16:26)! If sin is not removed from our lives we stand eternally condemned (John 8:24; Romans 6:23). If sin is not removed on God’s terms we will spend eternity in hell rather than in heaven (Matthew 7:21-23).
If God told you to do “something great” to have your sins forgiven and receive the eternal reward of heaven, would you not do it? Again, any reasonable person would answer, “Yes, of course I would!” Why then do so many resist the simple, clear instructions of Jesus and His apostles regarding salvation?
“Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned” (Mark 16:16). “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins” (Acts 2:38). “And now why are you waiting? Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord” (Acts 22:16, NKJV).
Thankfully, for Naaman’s sake he could be reasoned with. He obeyed God’s instructions and was cleansed (2 Kings 5:14). What about you? Can you be reasoned with from the Scriptures? You are not being asked to do some great and difficult thing to be saved. You are simply being asked to obey the Lord’s instructions to be saved for all eternity (John 14:15; Hebrews 5:9). Don’t allow pride or your own thoughts to prevent your salvation!