Friday, June 25, 2010
CENTURION THE MODEL OF FAITH (JUNE 25TH SATURDAY- Mt 8: 5-17)
1. The centurions were the backbone of the Roman army. In a Roman legion there were 6000 men, the legion was divided into 60 centuries each containing 100 men, and in command of each century there was a centurion – finest men in the Roman army.
2. Almost every centurion in the N.T. is mentioned with honour.
• The centurion who recognized Jesus on the cross as the son of God.
• Cornelius the first Gentile convert to the Christian Church
• Centurion who found out St. Paul was a Roman and rescued him from mob.
• Centurion who informed Paul that Jews had planned to kill him
• Centurion whom Felix ordered to look after Paul
• Centurion who accompanied Paul on his last journey.
3. I am not worthy –Jesus’ statement in 8:7 saying I will go and heal him would have surely annoyed the Jews for it was not proper for a Jew to visit the house of a Gentile. Knowing that the centurion asks Jesus to heal him from far. He manifests a lot of humility and politeness.
4. This is the only time when someone comes and asks Jesus to perform a miracle on behalf of a slave. Usually parents come and intercede for their kids, or the relatives come on behalf of their dear ones. Centurion comes on behalf of a slave which is absolutely a rare happening and it impressed Jesus very much.
5. The centurion knows his power and status. He has several people to obey him. He does not practice blind humility by denying the truth. His humility is manifested when he deals with Jesus with true faith. He became the son of Abraham not by his birth but by his faith.
Every day we say those beautiful words of the centurion! “Only say a word I shall be Healed” (In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God Jn1:1) The centurion identified the presence of Word that became flesh. He knows that the Word alone is sufficient and flesh need not travel so long to reach his slave. Thus centurion captures the heart of Jesus not just by his act of faith but also by the content of his faith (Word is Jesus).
William Barclays’ Commentary
The Preacher’s Outline and Sermon Bible