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#91 A Centurion’s Faith

A Roman Centurion approaches the Jewish elders. His servant has palsy and is dying (today’s Parkinson’s ?). The officer is attached to his servant and begs the elders to ask Jesus to heal him, feeling unworthy to ask, and thinking they will know best how to approach their Messiah.

Typically Roman servants were property and treated cruelly. But this man has character and has been impressed that the Jews’ religion is superior to his own. He’s heard of Jesus’ words and healing and the need in his heart responded.

A delegation meets Jesus as he enters Capernaum after his sermon on happiness. They urge him to fill the Centurion’s request because “he is worthy–he loves our nation.” Jesus sets out for the Centurion’s home, but moves slowly because of the crowd.

The Centurion sends another message, “Don’t trouble yourself to come to my home,” and shortly goes to Jesus himself to finish the message. He presses through the people to reach Jesus, saying,

“I am not worthy to come to you, but I am a man under authority and I understand it. Just give the command and my servant will be well. For I myself give commands and they happen.” He perceived in Jesus the divinity and power of the universe.

Jesus turned to those following and with wonder said, ” I haven’t seen faith like this in all Israel!” Turning back to the Centurion, he said, “As you have believed, so it will be.”

And so it was.

Matthew 8:5-13 , Luke 7:1-10

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