Tender HeartsHow can we avoid being spiritually stubborn and unresponsive to God?
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Just Say the Word
Just say the word from where you are, and my servant will be healed (v.7).
When a man entered a Denny’s restaurant proclaiming that he was the new boss, manager Tracy Brant didn’t buy it. Although the man was sporting a coat, tie, and toting a briefcase, Tracy dialed Denny’s headquarters to verify his claim. Meanwhile, the well-dressed intruder cooked himself a burger and fries in the restaurant kitchen. Before he finished eating, Brant confirmed that he was only masquerading as a manager. He had no legitimate authority in the restaurant.
The religious leaders of His day portrayed Jesus as someone simply masquerading—an intruder with no real power (Mark 11:27). Those who knew Jesus, however, acknowledged Him as the ruler of everything. As eyewitnesses to His miracles and students of His teaching, they were awestruck by His authority (Matthew 9:8).
In one instance, a Roman soldier recognized Jesus’ ultimate power, and he said, “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” (Luke 7:8). The soldier knew Jesus had that kind of command over sickness and disease, so he arranged for the Lord to heal a servant of his. Unlike most people who asked Jesus to perform bedside miracles, the soldier sent Jesus this message: “Lord, don’t trouble yourself by coming to my home. . . . Just say the word from where You are, and my servant will be healed” (vv.6-7). Amazed, Jesus said: “I tell you, I haven’t seen faith like this in all Israel!” (v.9). And sure enough, the servant was healed.
As Christians, we’re on a first-name basis with the One who is in charge of our world (John 10:3). This truth can increase our faith. When we need help, we can send Jesus a message that begins like this: Just say the word from where You are.
—Jennifer Benson Schuldt
What might happen if we replaced Jesus’ authority in our lives with that of pastors, mentors, or Bible teachers? What’s the relationship between our faith and Jesus’ authority?
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