Summary: Look at our circumstances through the eyes of faith as says faith can move mountains. Faith is not based on our present situation but it looks forward to the future. A look at the Centurition’s Faith.
Title: The faith of the centurion
Series: Miracles of Jesus
Scripture: Luke 7:1-10
Introduction: God expects his children be people of extraordinary faith. He wants us to look at our circumstances through the eyes of faith. The Bible says faith can move mountains. How is your faith now? Faith can bring changes in our situation. Hebrews 11:1 1Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. Our faith is not based on our present situation but it looks forward to the future. Do you have this faith? How can you exercise this faith? In our text today I am speaking of a Roman centurion who had a great faith. Jesus told about him, “I tell you I have not found such great faith even in Israel.” In our devotion today we are going to see how we can achieve such faith? What is the speciality of this Roman solider that Jesus was amazed at his faith?
The faith of the centurion.
1. Faith crosses all barriers.
Luke 7:1-2 1When Jesus had finished saying all this in the hearing of the people, he entered Capernaum. 2There a centurion’s servant, whom his master valued highly, was sick and about to die.
When we look at the background we find Jesus just completed his teaching, ‘The sermon on the mount.’ He entered Capernaum. There was a Roman centurion in Capernaum. A centurion is a Roman official who is in charge of 50-100 soldiers. He has the rank of a present army captain. He was an employee of the Roman government. He was the person responsible to maintain law and order. The Bible says he had a servant who was ill, he was about to die. The centurion sent his representatives to Jesus asking him to come and heal his servant. Listen, the centurion was a very busy man. He had many servants to replace the sick servant but he took his time out to care for a servant. A servant always has low status, less money, and less value in society. People always like to associate with the other people of the same status or of a superior status. This centurion took time to care for a servant. Secondly, the centurion asks a Jew, Jesus for help. Remember at this time the Romans are ruling the Jews. They never ask for help, it is below their dignity. The centurion crossed all social, racial, and ethnic barriers to appeal for help. In other words the centurion was not self-centered. He cared about his servant and he is taking a risk of doing a service to a servant.
Our faith must be like the centurion’s faith, it must cross all barriers. When we are in Christ we are a new creation. Then there is no separation for language, religion, caste, culture, or status. We are all one and God wants us to see everyone equal like the centurion. Jesus was amazed with this centurion’s selfless act in asking for help.
2. Faith makes us active in God’s work.
Luke 7:3-5 The centurion heard of Jesus and sent some elders of the Jews to him, asking him to come and heal his servant. 4When they came to Jesus, they pleaded earnestly with him, "This man deserves to have you do this, 5because he loves our nation and has built our synagogue."
We must understand that the Jewish people hated the Romans as the Romans ruled them, more so the soldiers as they tortured them. When we look into this context we can find the Jewish elders approaching Jesus on behalf of the centurion. Definitely this centurion must have been different than other Romans. Read v4&5, the centurion built a synagogue with his own money. Listen, only the Jews could go to the Temple in Jerusalem but anyone could go into a synagogue. In the time of Jesus the major way God spread the good news was though the teaching in the synagogues. The centurion knew if a synagogue could be built many could come to the saving grace of Jesus. He knew God was using the synagogue to spread the good news and he voluntarily built a synagogue, in other words he voluntarily participated in God’s work. The centurion was God-centered.
If you have faith you will participate in God’s work. You will find out which medium God is using nowadays and try to invest your time and money for the extension of God’s work. I thank God for your participation in City Harvest AG Church ministries. Many of you are taking leadership, praying for the ministry, winning souls, donating for the building fund, tithing etc. Let me say you are investing in God’s work like the centurion at City Harvest AG Church, Bangalore. God will honour your faith.