Luke 7. Forum Discussion

Faith and compassion

Luke begins chapter 7 with the story of a centurion who had a slave that he highly regarded that was sick and about to die (A centurion was an officer in the Roman army. They got their name because they commanded 100 men). The centurion sent Jewish elders to ask Jesus if He would come and heal the man. Jesus was on His way to the centurion’s home when He met up with some friends that the centurion had sent. He sent them to say to Jesus, “Lord, do not trouble Yourself further, for I am not worthy for You to come under my roof; for this reason I did not even consider myself worthy to come to You, but just say the word, and my servant will be healed.”

Luke writes beginning in verse 9, “Now when Jesus heard this, He marveled at him, and turned and said to the crowd that was following Him, “I say to you, not even in Israel have I found such great faith.”  When those who had been sent returned to the house, they found the slave in good health.”

The Bible is full of examples where people’s faith made them whole. Here in the 7th chapter of Luke we have another great example with the woman who brought the alabaster vial. Luke lets us know that the woman was a known sinner. Jesus had been invited by one of the Pharisees to dine together and the woman heard that Jesus was coming to her city. Luke writes, “And there was a woman in the city who was a sinner; and when she learned that He was reclining at the table in the Pharisee’s house, she brought an alabaster vial of perfume,  and standing behind Him at His feet, weeping, she began to wet His feet with her tears, and kept wiping them with the hair of her head, and kissing His feet and anointing them with the perfume.”

The Pharisee could not see past the woman’s reputation as a sinner and said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, He would know who and what sort of person this woman is who is touching Him, that she is a sinner.”

But Jesus had compassion on the woman and later beginning in verse 40, Luke records the following exchange, “And Jesus answered him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.” And he replied, “Say it, Teacher.”  “A moneylender had two debtors: one owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty.  When they were unable to repay, he graciously forgave them both. So which of them will love him more?”  Simon answered and said, “I suppose the one whom he forgave more.” And He said to him, “You have judged correctly.” Turning toward the woman, He said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has wet My feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair.  You gave Me no kiss; but she, since the time I came in, has not ceased to kiss My feet.  You did not anoint My head with oil, but she anointed My feet with perfume.  For this reason I say to you, her sins, which are many, have been forgiven, for she loved much; but he who is forgiven little, loves little.”  Then He said to her, “Your sins have been forgiven.” Those who were reclining at the table with Him began to say to themselves, “Who is this man who even forgives sins?”  And He said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

Jesus’ actions and words show us how much compassion He has. They also show us how important our faith is to Jesus.

We know from Romans 10:17 that, “Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” Faith is such an important thing for us to have in our lives. As we have seen in Luke 7, faith allowed the centurion’s slave to be healed by Jesus. Faith also allowed for the woman with the alabaster vial to have Jesus forgive her sins.

We all face adversity at different times in our lives. Having faith allows us to get through these difficult times and to be comforted by Jesus. Mathew 17:20 says, “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you.”

Doubt is the opposite of faith. Whenever doubt starts to creep into our heads, we should remind ourselves that our faith, although it might not always be as strong as we want it to be, is much bigger than that of a tiny mustard seed. We should also remind ourselves of what Jesus said we can do with even a little bit of faith in Mathew 17:20. We can make a conscious decision to ignore the voice of doubt, and instead put our faith in God so that we can serve Him to the fullest of our ability. Amen

Comments

Virtual Bible Study

We know that Romans 10:17 tells us that we can increase our faith by hearing the word of God.

What are some things that we can do to avoid having doubt?

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Virtual Bible Study

I may be over simplifying things, but just choose to believe. Take a "leap of faith".

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Michael

I don't think that means you will always get what you want, but you will be pleasing to Jesus and to God for following your faith, as evidenced time and time again in the Bible.

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