Centurion

Recently a movie has come out with the title Centurion.  A centurion was a Roman officer who held the power of life and death over his command.  In the area around Capernaum was a centurion who had wealth, power, and humble faith.  Jesus focuses on his faith and not his prowess in battle.  In fact Jesus says that this foreign occupier has more faith than he has seen in Israel.  The centurion sees that although he carries the authority of Rome a greater authority works through Jesus.  Do you have humble faith like the centurion of Luke 7?

Luke 7:1-17

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. 3The 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.” 6So Jesus went with them.
      He was not far from the house when the centurion sent friends to say to him: “Lord, don’t trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. 7That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed. 8For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”

 9When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, “I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel.” 10Then the men who had been sent returned to the house and found the servant well.

 11Soon afterward, Jesus went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd went along with him. 12As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out—the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the town was with her. 13When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said, “Don’t cry.”

 14Then he went up and touched the coffin, and those carrying it stood still. He said, “Young man, I say to you, get up!” 15The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother.

 16They were all filled with awe and praised God. “A great prophet has appeared among us,” they said. “God has come to help his people.” 17This news about Jesus spread throughout Judea[a] and the surrounding country.

Going Deeper

  1. What do the centurion’s servants tell Jesus?
  2. How is the centurion different from those with whom Jesus usually associates?
  3. In what position did the widow of Nain find herself?
  4. How did Jesus care for the widow?
  5. How does your faith reach out to those of various socio-economic status?

Going Deeper

Check out The Stranger series at The Chapel.   Listen to The Centurion sermon and think, “Is this what the centurion story is all about?”  http://www.chapel.org/messages/the_stranger/stranger-04/

After hearing the sermon on the centurion pray and write a reflection under the comments section on this blog.

 

About Plymothian

I teach at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. My interests include education, biblical studies, and spiritual formation. I have been married to Kelli since 1998 and we have two children, Daryl and Amelia. For recreation I like to run, play soccer, play board games, read and travel.
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