An Example of Faith
Scripture Reading – Matthew 8:5-13
The Faith of a Centurion
Mat 8:5 When he had entered Capernaum, a centurion came forward to him, appealing to him,
Mat 8:6 “Lord, my servant is lying paralyzed at home, suffering terribly.”
Mat 8:7 And he said to him, “I will come and heal him.”
Mat 8:8 But the centurion replied, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof, but only say the word, and my servant will be healed.
Mat 8:9 For I too am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. And I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes, and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”
Mat 8:10 When Jesus heard this, he marveled and said to those who followed him, “Truly, I tell you, with no one in Israel have I found such faith.
Mat 8:11 I tell you, many will come from east and west and recline at table with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven,
Mat 8:12 while the sons of the kingdom will be thrown into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
Mat 8:13 And to the centurion Jesus said, “Go; let it be done for you as you have believed.” And the servant was healed at that very moment.
A centurion met Jesus. Our prayers to God can be modeled after the way this man approached Jesus. First, he asked for help simply by stating a fact: “Lord, my servant lies at home paralyzed, suffering terribly.” This Roman-army commander didn’t make an official request or ask politely for anything from Jesus. He just cried out to Jesus in his need. When our prayers are no more than a cry of pain, Jesus hears those prayers too.
Second, the centurion trusted in Jesus’ power to respond. Even though Jesus offered to come in person and heal the servant, the centurion replied, “Just say the word, and my servant will be healed.” The centurion knew that Jesus was so powerful that he could heal people even if he was not physically present. We too can trust that Jesus will answer our prayers. Sometimes Jesus heals us physically, and other times Jesus heals us emotionally or spiritually. Sometimes Jesus promises us future healing and asks us to wait until the right time. No matter what, Jesus’ words are powerful enough to heal.
Jesus healed the centurion’s servant and praised the faith of the centurion. We are invited to trust in Jesus, just as this man did. Jesus will listen to our prayers with love and answer our prayers with power.