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Lesson # Matt. 8:6-9
Study Material - Matt. 8:6-9
You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
6 and saying, 'Lord, my servant is lying paralyzed at home, suffering great pain.' 7 And He said to him, 'I will come and heal him.' 8 But the centurion answered and said, 'Lord, I am not worthy for You to come under my roof, but just say the word, and my servant will be healed. 9 'For I, too, am a man under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to this one, 'Go!' and he goes, and to another, 'Come!' and he comes, and to my slave, 'Do this!' and he does it.'
A centurion came with hat in hand, in humility, and stated a situation to Jesus. He made no request but his intentions were clear to Christ.
Jesus responded immediately to go and heal the servant of the centurion, the servant who was not well. The centurion does not expect that Christ should go with him to the sick servant. The centurion feels unworthy to have Jesus accompany him, but prefers that Jesus merely speak the necessary command and the deed required would be accomplished. Jesus need only speak and the healing would occur. His presence was not required. Distance is not a barrier to God. Direct line of sight, the actual touching of the one in need are not necessary.
There are a couple of remarkable things in this passage. The obvious is that faith of the centurion was enough to receive an answer to a prayer. That Jesus was not needed physically in the home of the centurion. That the word of God is all that is necessary in order to accomplish the task desired. That this did not occur in an synagogue.
But the more remarkable thing in this passage is that this request came to Jesus from a gentile. It came from a Roman. It came from a Roman soldier!
This will lead to Jesus' comments in the next few verses, and therefore is the subject of this passage. Gentiles had access to Bible doctrine.
The Pharisees thought, and the common thought of the period was, that the 'sacred' scrolls were for the Jews and no one else. One had to perform some type of conversion in order to be accepted into the realm of the Jewish peoples and of course, it had to be approved by the ruling priests.
Interesting enough there were several orders of priests and even these different orders did not agree in many subjects. So the priesthood was in itself a contradiction.
This Roman soldier had his training probably in Rome. He was probably assigned to this region and there he heard the gospel. This is the first barrier he had to overcome. The priests did not teach the gospel of a savior very well. In fact they taught the kingdom to come. What need was there of a savior anyway?? But still there were some who taught the scriptures correctly. The centurion heard this message even through the onslaught of other scriptural propaganda (that which was not true).
Beyond that, he heard the doctrines taught. He grew in his spiritual life and came to a point of faith, such that he believed that Jesus was the Christ (as he addressed him) and believed that Jesus was capable of doing whatever was asked, and by merely the word of his own will.
The centurion had many obstacles to overcome. he probably had men from his own ranks that razzed him. He certainly had the Jewish peoples against him. After all he was a soldier of the state of Rome which was oppressing the region and taxing the Jews as well as others.
He was an adversary to most. He was a centurion, a commander of a hundred perhaps. A company grade officer, but then the term centurion was used merely to identify officers not necessarily specific ranks. He was not the highest ranking officer in his command, but he was not the lowest either.
His training suggests that he would have combat experience of some type. But he was a man of humility and compassion. He cared for those who were subordinate to him.
The priests, were where about this time? Were they looking in on the sick or preparing for their next sermon? Were they compassionate? Certainly not compassionate. They would just as soon let someone die of hunger as to let them pick an ear of corn on the Sabbath. The priests were looking for some way to discredit this new 'teacher', Jesus, rather than looking to His authority and power, and purpose for even being here.
Christ demonstrates His willingness to help all who come to Him, and to help them immediately. Christ demonstrates that He is available to all - rich or poor, sinner or not, sick or well, positioned or not, and so forth.
Where are the multitudes? They are still out there on the sidelines, watching, waiting, following along, but at a distance, uncertain, undecided.
So where should we be? We need not have direct conversations with Jesus. He has left us His word. He healed the sick with it. He created the universe with it. So what do you suppose we should do with it?
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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