Luke 7:1-17

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After the complexities of Jesus’ teaching in the last chapter of Luke, here are two stories that need no interpretation. What they need is application, and lots of it!

The centurian shows amazing faith, but first he shows incredible humbleness. For a Roman to come to a Jewish man for healing rather than one of his own gods must have taken a lot of pride-swallowing. How much easier it should be for me – who knows I am a fallen wreck and cannot acheive anything outside of God’s power – to come before him and admit that I need help. But it is the man’s faith that amazes Jesus, that he doesn’t need to be physically present to heal. He is the first person in this book to recognise Jesus’ authority over the earth. And while I can be amazed by the centurian’s faith and humility, the most amazing character in this story is Jesus. He actually does heal the servant from a distance just by willing it. Jesus is amazing!

And he knows it! Imagine walking up to a coffin in the middle of a funeral procession and telling the body to get up. You don’t do that unless you know that you can pull it off. And given the large crowd of witnesses, I think it’s fair to say that this wasn’t just a magic trick but a serious work of God. A God who deserves some serious respect. They see him as a great prophet, but in the light of his death and resurrection we can see that the source of his power was rather more direct.

Heavenly Father, thankyou for the encouragement of these truly incredible stories of your power. I praise you for your supremacy and that you can demonstrate it at a moment’s notice without having to warm up. I’m sorry for forgetting that you have this power, and for not being humble enough to ask for it or faithful enough to trust when I do. Help me to depend on you more and more. Amen.

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