So That You May Know – A Centurion’s Great Faith

January 30, 2022

Luke 7:1-10

Jesus stepped on the toes of his Jewish listeners by praising a Roman centurion’s faith (Luke 7:9).  He was impressed that the centurion—a soldier who knew all about power and authority—recognized Jesus’ power and authority over disease.  He marveled at the officer’s faith—just as he later marveled at the lack of faith among the citizens of Capernaum (10:13-16).  But in praising the centurion, Jesus also tweaked the ethnic attitudes of the Jews.  A Gentile with greater faith than any of them?  Scandalous!  His words must have enraged them, just as his sermon in Nazareth proved explosive (4:16-30).  The Jews should have known that when the Messiah came, his blessing would be for Gentiles too (see Isaiah 25:6-8).  But this message came as a shock because they were too wrapped up in their own affairs and destiny.  In claiming God’s promises, we must not apply them so personally that we forget to see what God wants to do to reach all the people he loves.