When Jesus had entered Capernaum, a centurion came to him, asking for help. 6 “Lord,” he said, “my servant lies at home paralyzed, suffering terribly.”
7 Jesus said to him, “Shall I come and heal him?”
8 The centurion replied, “Lord, I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed. 9 For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”
10 When Jesus heard this, he was amazed and said to those following him, “Truly I tell you, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith. 11 I say to you that many will come from the east and the west, and will take their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. 12 But the subjects of the kingdom will be thrown outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
13 Then Jesus said to the centurion, “Go! Let it be done just as you believed it would.” And his servant was healed at that moment. (Matthew 8:5–13, NIV)
A Roman soldier would have been the last person people would have thought should be commended for his faith in God. Often times the people most unlikely to be drawn to Jesus are the first to actually come to him, which says a whole lot about the appeal of Jesus and quite a bit about our assumptions of what it takes to have faith.
Why do you think this centurion turned to Jesus for help with his servant?
In what ways do the assumptions of this soldier tell us about what it means to have faith, especially for those who assume to have faith perfected?
How can we have faith that looks more like that of this centurion?