Although the underlying Hebrew word translated as “leprosy” is actually describing a variety of skin afflictions which expand beyond the strict modern medical definition of a specific disease, this malady serves in Scripture as a greater spiritual picture of sin. One of the prophetic hallmarks of the Messiah was that He would not just perform miracles, but the healing of lepers was a particular assignment which not only addressed literally the healing of the physical disease, but because Hebrew society had come to view leprosy as something connected to sin, represented spiritually the healing of sin. Leprosy was not simply viewed as a physical disease, but spiritual defilement. Without cleansing, the bearer was restricted not just from normal day-to-day society, but from entering the Temple and therefore participating in its activities. The sufferer was cut off from both God and man.
In the first chapter, we will focus on the attributes of sin as represented by leprosy, and in the following chapter that which was necessary to cleanse the leper/sinner.