Summary: Applying principles of the Beatitudes to ministry
After the Sermon on the Mount, the disciples needed a “model of ministry,” i.e., an opportunity to see how the principles of the Beatitudes apply to ministry. The Power of Role Model: “Tell me who your heroes are, and I’ll tell you what you’ll be five years from now.”
B. FAITH OF THE ROMAN OFFICER
1. A popular centurion who respected the Jews and built them a synagogue (v. 5). His servant “was lying at home paralyzed, dreadfully tormented” (Matthew 8:6).
2. The centurion’s evidence of faith:
a. He recognized Jesus. “He sent elders . . . pleading with Him to come and heal his servant” (Luke 7:3).
b. He realized His unworthiness. “Lord, do not trouble yourself, for I am not worthy” (Luke 7:6).
c. He focused on the Word of God. “Say the word, and my servant will be healed” (Luke 7:7).
d. Definition: “Faith is affirming what God has said in His Word.”
3. Greater faith than the Jews. “I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel” (Luke 7:9).
C. RAISING THE WIDOW’S SON (LUKE 7:11-17)
1. Situation. “Jesus met a funeral precession coming out the gate of Nain. A widow was following the dead body of her son who was being carried to burial.
2. Methods of the miracle. “Jesus said, ‘Young man, I say to you arise’” (Luke 7:14). Out of the many ways to heal, Jesus raised the dead by the Word of God.
a. Physically dead
b. Spiritually dead
c. Second Coming. “The Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel . . . the dead in Christ will rise first” (1 Thessalonians 4:16).
3. Premature burial. There are several descriptions of death, i.e., brain dead, cease breathing, heart stops beating, the soul departed. Some feel that in a heathen society, some have been “prematurely buried” who could have been revived in modern society by advanced technology. They say Jesus did not raise the dead, but revived a body who was “reviveable.” How do we know the boy was dead?
a. The Bible calls him “a dead man” (Luke 7:12).
b. Jesus treated him as dead (Luke 7:14).
c. Later, Jesus said, “The dead are raised” (Luke 7:22).
D. CONTRASTING FAITH OF SIMON THE PHARISEE AND THE WOMAN (LUKE 7:36-50)
1. Situation. The Pharisee Simon wanted more information about Jesus and invited Him to a meal. Usually, people of the city were allowed in the room after the meal to hear the message (i.e., conversation).
2. The women’s response. “A woman in the city who was a sinner . . . stood at His feet behind Him weeping; and she began to wash His feet with her tears, and wiped them with the hair of her head; and she kissed His feet and anointed them with the fragrant oil” (Luke 7:37-38).
3. Questioning Jesus. Simon inwardly doubted Jesus, “If He were a prophet, (He) would have known . . . she is a sinner” (Luke 7:39).
4. Parable. “There was a certain creditor who had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. And when they had nothing with which to repay, he freely forgave them both. Tell Me, therefore, which of them will love him more”? (Luke 7:41-42).