TEXT: Matthew 8:5-13
5 And when Jesus was entered into Capernaum, there came unto him a centurion, beseeching him,
6 And saying, Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented.
7 And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him.
8 The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed.
9 For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it.
10 When Jesus heard it, he marvelled [a Greek word which means to ‘wonder at’ or express ‘admiration’ for], and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.
11 And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.
12 But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
13 And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour.
As we approach Billy Graham’s birthday celebration, I want to share something from the evangelist whom God made great regarding the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He said, “Today even the calendar speaks of Jesus’ death. Why isn’t the calendar dated from Mohammed’s flight, or from Buddha’s birth? Because Jesus is the only One who has ever died for mankind. But He did not remain dead; He was raised to life and the power of His resurrection changed the world forever! ”
On yesterday, we were introduced to a Roman Centurion, the gentle Gentile general, who comes to Jesus — or, according to some, sends representatives to Jesus — requesting the healing of his servant. This is quite remarkable on the Centurion’s part considering that, in the Roman Empire, slaves or servants were considered property who had no legal personhood. This servant was likely not even a native Roman as most slaves in the Empire were those captured during Rome’s conquests. Yet, this Roman centurion had concern for his servant’s well-being. He likely had sought traditional remedies for the servant’s paralysis, and having no success, he turned to Jesus, the Jewish preacher with the growing following from Galilee.
Notice the character of this centurion, and how closely he identifies with the suffering of his servant. He tells Jesus, “Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented.” Can you imagine experiencing a pain that can only be described as “grievous torment”? That is an extremely specific descriptor. Yet, somehow, the Centurion who, based on his description of himself, could have had any number of things going on, is able to describe the pain of his servant — someone whom society would not have expected him to care for in any real way.
It is not far-fetched to see how Jesus may have identified especially with the feelings of the Centurion toward his servant. Jesus himself had come not just to save humanity, but to live with, suffer with, and identify with humanity in a sin-cursed world. Jesus could have just as well described the “grievous torment” of lost souls paralyzed by sin. Jesus didn’t have to care for us, but because He is a gentle, loving Savior, He cares for every part of our lives and seeks to make us whole. And that is what He set out to do with the Centurion’s servant. His immediate response is recorded in verse 7: “I will come and heal him.”
No questions. No judgment. No delay. Simply, “I will come.” And, “I will heal him.” How wonderful is it that we serve a Savior like that? A Savior who hears of the “grievous torment” of one of his creation through the compassionate concern of a man who did not have to be concerned? A Savior who immediately says, “I will come. I will heal.” Just as with the leper, we see the will of God toward His creation. He wants to heal us. He wants to save us. In the words of the Psalmist, He ‘forgives all our iniquities; heals all our diseases; redeems our lives from destruction; crowns us with lovingkindness and tender mercies; and satisfies us with good things.’
Barney E. Warren wrote:
Simply trusting in the Savior,
Healing virtue now receive;
You must never doubt or waver,
His unfailing word believe.
Come, ye helpless, sick and suffering,
At His feet in meekness kneel;
Soul and body to Him offering,
He will all your sickness heal.
He is just the same forever,
Cast away your doubts and fears;
From affliction He’ll deliver,
Though you’ve suffered many years.
Listen to the declaration:
Christ forever is the same;
All the power in earth and heaven
Is in His majestic name.
Casting all your care on Jesus,
Sickness, sorrow, grief, and pain;
Oh, believe His blessed promise,
There is healing in His name.
Now, if you are with us today and you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to show you how you can place your faith and trust in Him for Salvation from sin and Hell.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the Cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at [email protected] and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.