Daily Devotion, 12/07/17, “The Man Who Amazed Jesus”
“But the officer said, ‘Lord, I am not worthy to have you come into my home. Just say the word from where you are, and my servant will be healed’…When Jesus heard this, he was amazed. Turning to those who were following him, he said, ‘I tell you the truth, I haven’t seen faith like this in all Israel!’” Matthew 8:8-10 NLT
I think we can all relate to how the officer in this passage felt when he said, “I am not worthy to have you come into my home.” We know our own stories well enough to know that we don’t deserve to be in His presence. Despite feeling that way, the officer approached Jesus boldly and with great faith to ask for a miracle for his servant. He had no inside track with Jesus. He wasn’t a priest, a disciple or even a Jew. He was a military officer in the army of the country that ruled, oppressed and took advantage of the Jewish people. As such, he was an enemy of the Jews as were all of his Roman countrymen. In fact, the Jews were counting on the Messiah to overthrow and defeat the Romans! Additionally, this officer likely knew next to nothing about the Torah or the Psalms or who Jesus really was. Nonetheless, he believed Jesus could heal his servant. His faith was so great that he didn’t even think Jesus had to come to his home and physically touch his servant to heal him. “Just say the word,” the man said, “and he’ll be healed.” This officer’s faith and humility absolutely amazed Jesus. Now that’s something most of us do not do every day!
Jesus is moved by simple, humble faith not religious heritage, Bible knowledge or doctrinal correctness. He was moved because the man believed in Him. While the Jews were arguing over whether Jesus could heal on the Sabbath or eat without washing and other such nonsense, the Roman officer simply believed and asked. He didn’t think Jesus had to pray the right prayer or perform some religious rite or even come to his house. Surrounded by people who were all trying to prove how important they were to Jesus, the officer came humble and unworthy. How refreshing this man must have been for Jesus!
How about you? When’s the last time you amazed Jesus? When’s the last time you came in faith and really believed Jesus would hear and answer? You don’t have to have it all together. You don’t have to have deep theological roots. You don’t have to understand all the mysteries of the Trinity or the Incarnation. The self-righteous religious elites may have not cared too much for the Roman officer because in their eyes, he was a worthless pagan but in Jesus' eyes, he was amazing. May your humble faith cause Jesus to be amazed by you also. You are loved!