41 A Roman officer recognizes Jesus as a man under God’s command.

Matthew 8:5–13; Luke 7:2–10

In Matthew 8:5, the King James Version says a centurion “went” to Jesus. Luke 7:3 says he sent Jewish elders with his message. How could both statements be true?

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Why might the Roman officer have been so concerned about a servant (Luke 7:2)?

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Why was it important to tell Jesus that the plea for healing was a “worthy request” (Luke 7:4–5)?

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How would the Roman officer have known Jesus was near, when he had not yet arrived (Luke 7:6)?

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Why might the officer have thought he was not worthy for Jesus to enter his house (Luke 7:6–8)?

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Where did the officer think Jesus’ power came from (Luke 7:6–8)?

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Why did Jesus marvel at the officer’s faith (Matthew 8:10)?

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Matthew gives us Jesus’ words that outsiders would see the Kingdom but many Israelites would not. Why wouldn’t both Matthew and Luke have shared the same information (Matthew 8:11–12; Luke 7:9)?

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What might the Jewish messengers have expected Jesus to do (Matthew 8:5–13)?

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At Capernaum, a Roman officer sent respected Jewish leaders to Jesus, pleading for help. “Sir, my young servant lies near death at my home, paralyzed with intense pain.”

Eyewitness

Mark 8:5–6 At Capernaum, a Roman officer sent a message to Jesus, pleading for help. “Sir, my young servant lies at home, paralyzed with intense pain.”
Luke 7:2–3 There, a Roman officer had a dear servant who was sick and near death. When he heard about Jesus, he sent respected Jewish leaders to ask him to come heal his servant.
King James

Mark 8:5–6 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.
Luke 7:2–3 And a certain centurion’s servant, who was dear unto him, was sick, and ready to die. And when he heard of Jesus, he sent unto him the elders of the Jews, beseeching him that he would come and heal his servant.

“This man is worthy of your help,” the leaders said, “because he loves our people and has built a synagogue for us.”

Eyewitness

Luke 7:4–5 Immediately upon arriving, they said, “This man is worthy of your help because he loves our people and has built a synagogue for us.”
King James

Luke 7:4–5 And when they came to Jesus, they besought him instantly, saying, That he was worthy for whom he should do this: For he loveth our nation, and he hath built us a synagogue.

“I will go and heal the servant,” Jesus said.

Eyewitness

Matthew 8:7 “I will go and heal the servant,” Jesus said.
King James

Matthew 8:7 And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him.

As Jesus came to a place not far from the house, friends brought another message from the officer. “Sir, do not put yourself to any trouble. I am not important enough for you to enter my house, nor did I consider myself worthy to see you. Just give the order, and my servant will be healed. For I also am a man under authority. At my command under Caesar, my soldiers come and go and do exactly what I say.”

Eyewitness

Matthew 8:8–9 But the officer felt unworthy for Jesus to come. “I am not important enough for you to enter my house. Just give the order, and my servant will be healed. For I also am a man under authority. At my command under Caesar, my soldiers come and go and do exactly what I say.”
Luke 7:6–8 So Jesus went with them, but as he came to a place not far from the house, friends brought a message from the officer. “Sir, do not put yourself to any trouble. I am not important enough for you to enter my house, nor did I consider myself worthy to see you. Just give the order, and my servant will be healed. For I also am a man under authority. At my command under Caesar, my soldiers come and go and do exactly what I say.”
King James

Matthew 8:8–9 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. 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.
Luke 7:6–8 Then Jesus went with them. And when he was now not far from the house, the centurion sent friends to him, saying unto him, Lord, trouble not thyself: for I am not worthy that thou shouldest enter under my roof: Wherefore neither thought I myself worthy to come unto thee: but say in a word, and my servant shall be healed. For I also am a man set under authority, having under me soldiers, and I say unto one, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it.

Jesus marveled at the message. To those following him, he said, “In all of Israel, I have never seen such faith. I tell you, outsiders will come from everywhere to dine with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the Kingdom of Heaven, but many Israelites will be on the outside, in the darkness where there will be bitterness and weeping.”

Eyewitness

Matthew 8:10–12 Jesus marveled at the message. To those following him, he said, “In all of Israel, I have never seen such faith. I tell you, outsiders will come from everywhere to dine with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the Kingdom of Heaven, but many Israelites will be on the outside in the darkness, where there will be bitterness and weeping.”
Luke 7:9 Jesus marveled at the message. To those following him, he said, “In all of Israel, I have never seen such faith.”
King James

Matthew 8:10–12 When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel. 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. But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Luke 7:9 When Jesus heard these things, he marvelled at him, and turned him about, and said unto the people that followed him, I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.

He turned to the messengers. “You can go home now. As you have believed, so it will be.”

Eyewitness

Matthew 8:13 He turned to the messengers. “You can go home now. As you have believed, so it will be.” At that moment, the servant was healed.
King James

Matthew 8:13 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.

When the messengers arrived at the officer’s home, they found that the servant had completely recovered at the moment when Jesus spoke.

Eyewitness

Matthew 8:13 He turned to the messengers. “You can go home now,” he said. “As you have believed, so it will be.” At that moment, the servant was healed.
Luke 7:10 When the messengers arrived at the officer’s home, they found that the servant had completely recovered.
King James

Matthew 8:13 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.
Luke 7:10 And they that were sent, returning to the house, found the servant whole that had been sick.