Summary: Jesus' Power over Disease
Matthew 8:5-13 Jesus' Power over Disease John 5:43 I am come in my Father’s name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive THE RESPECTED MAN (v. 5-13) Christ's Kingdom included the outcast and the Gentile. Its parameters were far broader than the Pharisees had assumed. A. The Place (v. 5a) "And when Jesus was entered into Capernaum..." Jesus resided there while ministering in Galilee, staying perhaps at the house of Peter. B. The Person (v. 5b) "...there came unto Him a centurion, beseeching Him" Luke 7 tells us that the centurion didn't actually go to Jesus himself, but sent some Jewish elders with his message because he felt unworthy to have Christ in his home. 1. A CENTURION The redemption of such individuals is a slap in the face to Jewish exclusivism, which had no room for a Gentile, especially a Roman soldier. 2. A SAMARITAN The centurion would have been a soldier over the troops of Antipas, and it is likely that he was a Samaritan. Samaritans were descendants of Jews who had intermarried with Gentiles, thereby forfeiting their Jewish heritage. So, here was the worst kind of Gentile: a Samaritan; and the worst kind of Samaritan: a member of the occupying forces of Rome. C. The Petition (vv. 6-9) 1. HIS RESPECT 6 Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented. servant ["child"] lieth at home sick of the palsy = "paralysis"], grievously tormented. The centurion addressed Jesus as "Lord," recognizing His divine authority. He petitioned Jesus on behalf of a child. Luke, using the word doulos, which means bondslave, recorded that the child was actually one of the centurion's slaves. It showed he cared. Aristotle said "A slave is a living tool, and a tool is an inanimate slave" (Ethics, 1161b). Varro, a Roman noblemen who wrote on agriculture said, in effect, that the only difference between a slave, a beast, and a cart was that a slave could talk (On Landed Estates, 1:17.1). 2. HIS REPUTATION (Lk. 7:4-5) :5 For he loveth our nation, and he hath built us a synagogue. 6 Then Jesus went with them. And when he was now not far from the house, the centurion sent friends to him, saying unto him, Lord, trouble not thyself: for I am not worthy that thou shouldest enter under my roof: 7 Wherefore neither thought I myself worthy to come unto thee: but say in a word, and my servant shall be healed. (1) His Commendation By the Jews 4 And when they came to Jesus, they besought him instantly, saying, That he was worthy for whom he should do this (2) His Compassion for the Jews ("loveth our nation"), 5 For he loveth our nation (3) His Contribution to the Jews ("built us a synagogue"). 3. HIS REWARD (v. 7) "And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him." 4. HIS RESPONSE (v. 8-9) The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed. 9 For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it. a. Of Humility (v. 8a) "The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that Thou shouldest come under my roof..." b. Of Faith (v. 8b-9) "...but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed." 1) His Knowledge of Jesus' Ability (v. 8b) speak the word only 2) His Knowledge of Jesus' Authority (v. 9) "For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me; and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it." I Know Your Words, I Know Your Works, I Know Your Worth. D. The Praise (v. 10) When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel. 1. JESUS' RECOGNITION (v. 10a) "When Jesus heard it, He marveled..." The Cause for the commendation. "Faith." It is faith in the word of God that excited Christ. The Character of the commendation. "Great." It was not little faith but "great" faith. The Consequence of the commendation. It Allowed God to work. 2. JESUS' REBUKE (v. 10b) "...[Jesus] said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel." The contrasting of the Israelites' faith to the centurion's was a great condemnation for the Jews. (a) The Failure in the condemnation. "I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel" If you do not believe the word of someone, you have greatly disparaged that person's character. (b) The Favour in the condemnation. "Many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 8:11). Many Gentiles were given the favour which the Jews lost by their failure of faith. (c) The Future in the condemnation. "The children of the kingdom [the Israelites] shall be cast out into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth" (Matthew 8:12). The future of unbelief is hell. Rev 21:8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. E. The Prediction (vv. 11-12) 1. THE INCLUSION OF GENTILES IN THE KINGDOM (v. 11) "And I say unto you that many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven" a. Described With Abraham ie. It Is a Kingdom of Faith. Rom 4:16 Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all, b. Denied Never for a moment did the Jews believe that the Gentiles would be reclining with them at the Messianic banquet. 2. THE EXCLUSION OF JEWS FROM THE KINGDOM (v. 12) But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. a. The Promise to the Jews (v. 12a) "But the sons of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth." In John 8, the Jewish rulers boasted that they were the sons of Abraham. Jesus said, "I know that ye are Abraham's seed; but ye seek to kill Me, because My word hath no place in you. I speak that which I have seen with my Father, and ye do that which ye have seen with your father. They answered, and said unto Him, Abraham is our father. Jesus saith unto them, If ye were Abraham's children, ye would do the works of Abraham. But now ye seek to kill Me.... Ye are of your father the devil" (vv. 37- 40a, 44a). many sons of the Kingdom are going to be thrown out, having forfeited their inheritance by unbelief. b. The Punishment of the Jews (v. 12b) But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 1) The Place - "Outer darkness" The rabbis taught that sinners in Gehenna would be covered with darkness. They believed that sinners would be sent away from the light of God's presence. Paradoxically, hell is not only a place of darkness; it is also a place of fire. 2) The Pain - "weeping and gnashing of teeth." The Jews associated "weeping" with sorrow and "gnashing of teeth" with anger 3) The Purpose - The message of Jesus is that people who reject Him as the Messiah--even if they are the sons of the Kingdom--are going to be thrown into outer darkness. F. The Promise (v. 13) "And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the very same hour."