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Thoughts Archived > Did He Really Care?

10 Jun 2012



June 10, 2012

    Did He Really Care?    

Luke 7: 1 - 10



When Jesus had finished saying all this, he went back to Capernaum.  Now the highly valued slave of a Roman officer was sick and near death.  When the officer heard about Jesus, he sent some respected Jewish leaders to ask him to come and heal his slave.  So they earnestly begged Jesus to come with them and help the man.  "If anyone deserves your help, it is he," they said, for he loves the Jews and even built a synagogue for us." 

So Jesus went with them.  But just before they arrived at the house, the officer sent some friends to say, "Lord, don't trouble yourself by coming to my home, for I am not worthy of such an honor.  I am not even worthy to come and meet you.  Just say the word from where you are, and my servant will be healed.  I know because I am under the authority of my superior officers, and I have authority over my soldiers.  I only need to say, 'Go,' and they go, or 'Come,' and they come. And if I say to my slaves, 'do this or that,' they do it."

When Jesus heard this, he was amazed.  Turning to the crowd, he said, "I tell you, I haven't seen faith like this in all the land of Israel!"  And when the officer's friends returned to his house, they found the slave completely healed.   






Hi.  I hope today is going to be a great day for you!

Today's lesson title may seem strange to you.  You may be thinking, 'Does WHO really care?'.  So, let's just jump in and see to whom this alludes.

Let's look at the Roman officer.  He seems to care about his highly valued slave.  But does he care because he will be inconvenienced by his illness or death, or because he genuinely cares about him as a person?  Why would he have been highly valued?    

What do you think the officer thinks of Jesus?  Do you think he believes in his miracles, or he is merely at his wits end in knowing what to do for his slave, and willing to try anything that may work?  It only states that he had heard of Jesus.  That leads me to believe he's willing to try anything, but we still don't know why for sure. 

I'm guessing the officer called upon the Jewish leaders believing they would have more clout, that Jesus would be more willing to listen to them, due to their position of leadership, and go help.  In this paragraph, the officer is seeking Jesus' presence, wanting him to come and heal his slave.  The Jewish leaders appealed to Jesus then, with supporting words that the man loved Jews and that he built a synagogue for them.  Assuming 'the man' was the officer, it is great to know at least one Roman loved the Jews at this point.  Could it have been the slave to which they were referring?  Who really needs the help?  Wouldn't the slave be Roman as well?  Either could have built the synagogue.  We assume it was the officer who built the synagogue with his money, but could it have been the slave who built it with blood, sweat and perhaps tears?  Would an officer HAVE money to do such a thing?  Would it be more reasonable, or less, to consider that the slave is the one to whom the leaders were referring?  Would the leaders have given that much credence to a slave based on the respect for the officer?  Could the leaders also have found the slave highly valued?

So Jesus went with them, it reads.

So now what is the officer's game?  Now he doesn't want Jesus to go there.  Could it be he has questioned his choice?  Could he get into trouble, be questioned about his choice, be ostracized by his peers or superiors, or be attacked with any other negatives he now sees by trusting Jesus, or believing in his abilities, calling upon him, trusting him?  Or may he be negatively focused upon because he cares about his slave so much?  Although he frames it in a positive, could he be doing so as to not stir up Jesus in a negative way knowing his powers?  Thinking in the positive, which is the way it appears to be stated, perhaps he did reconsider his actions and feel they were too bold and did not truly want to inconvenience Jesus.  If he were like me, he may just have been to lazy to clean the house to accept visitors!  Kidding ...sort of.  Anyway, the officer euphemistically bows to Jesus through friends (believing himself unworthy of such attention) who he sent to curtail his arrival indicating he need not come, but to only say the word and his servant shall be healed.  Jesus believes it is because of the officer's faith that the officer is curtailing his visit.  As a result, he heals the slave.    

When you call upon Jesus, do you believe he can heal you? 

There are a lot of things to think about today as you read and hopefully study.  The answers will be found by listening to Holy Spirit, as you reach out to him for understanding (1 John 2:26-27).  I am hoping you may be enlightened to understand how you really feel about those around you.  Is what you think about others always right?  Is Jesus calling you to a greater understanding and ability to care for others around you?  What have been your perceptions of others previously?  Would you go to the lengths of the officer, leaders, friends for folks who may work for you, or who you call friend, peer?  For those who have helped you in the past?  Would you even consider reaching out to others based on your upbringing?  Which side of the road will you walk now?  By their fruits ye shall know them...as Christians.  Can you define yourself as a Christian based on the answers to the above questions?  Whom, this day, will you choose to serve?

So, did the officer really care about the slave.....or himself?  Would you have cared about the slave....or yourself?  Did he care about inconveniencing Jesus or did he really have faith in him?  Will you care about others differently now?  Is your faith strong?  Do you have friends who would rally around to help you?  Are you the kind of friend to help others?  As a leader, would you go the extra mile to help someone you worked with or whom worked for you?  These are only a few questions from the tip of the iceberg. 

The person who really needed help was the slave, not the officer.  Jesus helped the slave.  So did the others.  "I assure you, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!"  Matthew 25:40  In this story, the slave was considered the least of these.  To Jesus, the least shall be first!   

"And now, dear children, continue to live in fellowship with Christ, so that when he returns, you will be full of courage and not shrink back from him in shame.  Since we know that God is always right, we also know that all who do what is right are his children." 1 John 2:28-29  

Accept Jesus into your heart today....and all those who are around you as well.            




Let Us Pray


Lord, I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the word and I shall be healed.  Forgive me of the sin of omission towards my brothers and sisters in the world.  For any discrimination I may have practiced, please forgive me.  Please forgive me for any hard heartedness or lording over that I may have expressed covertly or overtly towards others.  Help me to better accept that we are indeed all created equal.  I know I do not describe myself in this prayer, but I am covering myself with this prayer....just in case I have unknowingly erred.  It grieves my soul to see unkindness in the world.  To learn again and again of separateness and others causing pain to others.  We are all children of you, God.  Let all in the world not ever presume we are better than another for any reason.  We are not defined by you by economics, but by our hearts, our inner most being, our willingness to obey....YOU.  Thank you for looking into my heart, my inner most being, seeing my attempts at willingness to obey you and loving me still.  I pray for all in the world that they come to you, as you reach out to them.  I pray for all Christians, that they may see the error in some of their own hearts and beg your forgiveness.  I pray we may all be made whole by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you and worthily magnify your Holy Name, Jesus Christ THE Lord, my Lord.  Thank you.  I love you.  Amen.                   


Lord,LordJesJeJeJJjEJJJ     JJThe LORD is king!  Let the nations tremble!  T***


More love.... 



Let us hear from Paul as he prays:  

When I think of the wisdom and scope of God's plan, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth.  I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will give you mighty inner strength through his Holy Spirit.  And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in him.  May your roots go down deep into the soil of God's marvelous love.  And may you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love really is.  May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it.  Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

Now glory be to God!  By his mighty power at work within us, he is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would ever dare to ask or hope.  May he be given glory in the church and in Christ Jesus forever and ever through endless ages.  Amen.  Ephesians 3:14-21 NLT         




Scroll down to read Jesus' Prayer of Thanksgiving...'The Unforced Rhythms of Grace'.




Definition of a Christian:  Anyone who believes in God, Jesus and Holy Spirit, and accepts Jesus as Lord and Savior.  Regardless of church name or religious affiliation. 

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Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you.  And be sure of this:

I am with you always, even to the end of the age."




  Our Current Cause


It is time to reach into the community and the world around you to see wherein lies the greatest need.  As you choose to focus on these areas, do so with a servant's heart.  Whether the need is for children, adults, or animals, or any cause in between that will help those in need, ask God how you can best serve his needs, what path you must take, and how long you should persevere.  Sometimes we are to be in the lives of others merely as stepping stones.  Sometimes we are to touch those lives forever.  Whatever journey you are called to take, whatever team you will be a member, know this:  God is with you always...even til the end of time.  He loves you, is grateful for you, and will help you along life's way, especially if you are helping others along theirs, persevering with a servant's heart. 

Please accept my sincerest thanks....and God's....and may God richly bless you!   




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    One last thing....


 Jesus' Prayer of Thanksgiving

'The Unforced Rhythms of Grace'


"Abruptly Jesus broke into prayer:  "Thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth.  You've concealed your ways from sophisticates and know-it-alls, but spelled them out clearly to ordinary people.  Yes, Father, that's the way you like to work."

Jesus resumed talking to the people, but now tenderly.  "The Father has given me all these things to do and say.  This is a unique Father - Son operation, coming out of Father and Son intimacies and knowledge.  No one knows the Son the way the Father does, nor the Father the way the Son does.  But I'm not keeping it to myself; I'm ready to go over it line by line with anyone willing to listen."

"Are you tired?  Worn out?  Burned out on religion?  Come to me.  Get away with me and you'll recover your life.  I'll show you how to take a real rest.  Walk with me and work with me - watch how I do it.  Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.  I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn how to live freely and lightly.


  Matthew 11:  25-30

  The Message


And the people said,








I now write most prayers in the position of ' I ' (first person) because most people are sitting at their computer alone, not in groups, and it allows those reading and praying to personalize the prayer as coming from them going to God.  Variations may appear on holidays when families may wish to use the prayer provided. 


  Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996.  Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189.  All rights reserved.


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