Great Faith Among the Gentiles #3

Thursday, June 13, 2013

“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” (Matthew 8:10 KJV).

Let us scrutinize the context in order to see some marvelous Bible truths associated with today’s Scripture, especially why Jesus said what He did.

Once the centurion (commander of 100 Roman soldiers) heard that Christ had entered his town of Capernaum, he sent Jewish elders to ask Him to heal his sick and dying servant; moreover, the elders affirm that this Gentile is worthy of the miracle being granted because he has loved and blessed Israel (Luke 7:1-5). Jesus agrees, and as He approaches the centurion’s home, the centurion sends friends to Jesus, informing Him that he is not worthy to have Jesus enter his home: he admits that he was not worthy enough to even come to Jesus personally (Luke 7:6,7). This is where today’s Scripture picks up the account (again, Matthew omits details that only Luke provides).

When Jesus Christ is even closer to the house, the centurion evidently comes out and repeats to Jesus face-to-face what he had sent his friends to tell Him earlier: “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. 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” (Matthew 8:8,9). Today’s Scripture says that our Lord Jesus is amazed at this centurion’s statements—this Gentile has more faith than God’s people, Israel!

The centurion knows that there is power in Jesus Christ’s words. Just as this centurion commands servants to “do this” and “do that,” he knows that Jesus Christ can command the paralysis to depart from his dying servant! He knows Jesus can just speak the word from a distance, and his servant would be healed. Let us finish the narrative now….