Summary: And in this chapter the good Doctor records for us 4 encounters that Jesus had with 4 very different people...(
"JESUS IN ACTION"
LUKE CHAPTER 7
Before the world was created -- before man was ever formed by the hand of God. God the father; God the Son; and God the Spirit were together. They have always been....THEY WERE/ARE/WILL ALWAYS BE... When Moses asked God who should he tell pharaoh had sent him -- God said tell him "I AM HAS SENT YOU.."
And God choose to create a world that had free will; people would have the choice to serve God or not to serve God... Now, God knew that this would led to some problems, but He did it anyway as He wanted true worshippers and not puppets.
Yes, God knew man would fall -- so before creation it was decided that God the son would one day come to earth; leave His glory, put on human flesh -- and live and walk among the people. Jesus came to this world to teach us about God, and to provide a way to save us from our sins.
And to me one of the most fascinating things in Jesus ministry here on earth, was his encounters with people. To see how God in the flesh -- responded to people (real people like you and I, people who had hopes, dreams, fears and problems) to watch Jesus interact with them in a very real and personal way is awesome, and these encounters with man/woman/and children often teach us something about ourselves and about God.
Today we began a study of the Gospel of Luke -- written by Luke the doctor who was a traveling companion of Paul throughout most of Paul’s journeys. And as always, I encourage those who really want to study and learn about the life of Christ to pick up the questions in the back and join us wednesday morning or evening, it would be worth your time.
Today we want to study the 7th chapter of Luke (JESUS HAS JUST FINISHED HIS SERMON ON THE MOUNTAIN OF GALILEE, AND HE HAS JUST ENTERED THE CITY OF CAPERNAUM LOCATED ON THE NORTHERN SHORES OF THAT SEA). And in this chapter the good Doctor records for us 4 encounters that Jesus had with 4 very different people...(a roman soldier, a jewish widow, a prophet of God and a prostitute), 4 people who were suffering and troubled in some way; there was; a man troubled over his dying servant, a mother grieving over the death of her only son; a perplexed prophet locked up in a prison cell and a sinful woman, seeking forgiveness...
We will look at each of these encounters -- see how Jesus responded to them, and then try to take some lessons home with us.... IN LUKE 7:1-10;
I. JESUS RESPONDS TO FAITH AND A MAN LEAVES JESUS AMAZED
It is not often that the Son of God was amazed. As a matter of fact the word used here for amazed (enthaumasen) is only used in 2 other places in the bible -- (in Mt account of this same event) and in Mk. 6:6, where Jesus is amazed not about faith, but about the peoples unbelief, after all they had seen Him do and say.... AND WHEN YOU COME DOWN TO IT, UNBELIEF REALLY IS AMAZING BOTH IN AND OUT OF THE CHURCH, IN LIGHT ALL THAT JESUS DID, DOES AND SAID -- BUT THAT IS ANOTHER SERMON
The man these verses center around is a centurion, a centurion is a Roman Officer who is a commander of 100 men; Polybius an ancient historian says that it was only the best men in the Roman army who held the position of centurion.
Now according to our text their are a lot of impressive things about this centurion. AND Remember he is a Roman OFFICER, a man away from home, a man living in a land that was hostile to his very presence... The Jews hated the Romans for occupying their nation and because they were gentiles...
But despite all this, this centurion had an impressive character;
1. Luke says that he highly regarded his slave (which was uncommon in that culture) -- He didn’t see this man as a piece of property to be thrown out when useless -- but rather he cared for him.
2. He also was respected by the Jews; it was Jewish elders who made the request for the centurion.
3. In addition to this, Luke says that the centurion loved the Jewish nation and that he even built a synagogue for them.
4. He was also a humble man; imagine, a Roman officer telling a poor Jewish rabbi, that he was unworthy to have Him enter his house... Romans were not know for displaying humility, especially before their Jewish subjects.
BUT AS IMPRESSIVE AS THESE THINGS ARE, AND AS UNCOMMON AS THEY WERE IN THAT DAY AND TIME THEY ARE NOT WHAT AMAZED JESUS.