Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Matthew 8:5-13

Please read Matthew 8:5-13. If you do not have a bible you can get one by downloading E-SWORD or you can go to Bible Gateway for online study both are free. 

The first thing you should notice here is that it was a Centurion that came to Jesus. That would give a normal Jew several problems. First, since he is Roman so that means he is not Jewish he is a gentile why would a Jewish Rabi talk to an unclean gentile? Second, by Roman law the Centurions were allowed to kill their slaves if they became ill. Third, is he going to arrest me? The Romans were the law at that time so it would be easy to be concerned.

The Centurion was asking Jesus to heal his slave. This slave must have been special to the Centurion for him to ask for his healing. This also meant that the Centurion believed in Jesus. That put the Centurion in jeopardy, more so in his future than at that time because soon the Romans would be crucifying the Christians at the Jewish leaders behest.

Jesus said that he would go with the Centurion which, for all the above reasons was curious, but the Roman said he was not worthy to have Jesus under his roof. Jesus only needed to saw the slave was healed and the Centurion knew that the slave would be healed. WOW, I cannot wait to meet this Centurion in Heaven. He obviously had faith. Jesus said that he had not seen such faith in all of Israel. That is a great compliment to the Roman. With the possible exception of his Disciples Jesus was holding this Roman soldier to a very high standard for others to meet.

Then Jesus in verses 11&12 spoke something very different. Take a minute and think about what was said. From the east to west many will come and recline at the table of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Luke 13:29 talks about this feast that many will sit down at the table but the sons of the kingdom will be cast out. My study bible refers to the sons of the kingdom and the Jews who feel that their Judaism is adequate for them to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. They are wrong, As Jesus said from  John 14:6 Jesus answered, I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

Jesus then told the Centurion to go and it will be done as you believed. There again Jesus is referring to the faith of the Roman soldier. The slave was healed.

I have heard messages from the pulpit about these verses all my life. Generally the pastor is speaking about that level of faith. eternal. It is about faith but there is a lot more to it. Additional reading. Galatians 3:9, Acts 11:3 Read the commentaries  at the bottom of those pages.
In these verses we have seen faith, healing, celebration of the saved and condemnation of the ones that feel works can get you there. That is a lot to pack into 9 verses.