When Jesus had finished saying all this to the people who were listening, he entered Capernaum. 2 There a centurion’s servant, whom his master valued highly, was sick and about to die. 3 The centurion heard of Jesus and sent some elders of the Jews to him, asking him to come and heal his servant. 4 When they came to Jesus, they pleaded earnestly with him, “This man deserves to have you do this, 5 because he loves our nation and has built our synagogue.” 6 So Jesus went with them.
He was not far from the house when the centurion sent friends to say to him: “Lord, don’t trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. 7 That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed. 8 For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”
9 When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, “I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel.” 10 Then the men who had been sent returned to the house and found the servant well.
A song of ascents.
1 Out of the depths I cry to you, Lord;
2 Lord, hear my voice.
Let your ears be attentive
to my cry for mercy.
3 If you, Lord, kept a record of sins,
Lord, who could stand?
4 But with you there is forgiveness,
so that we can, with reverence, serve you.
5 I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits,
and in his word I put my hope.
6 I wait for the Lord
more than watchmen wait for the morning,
more than watchmen wait for the morning.
7 Israel, put your hope in the Lord,
for with the Lord is unfailing love
and with him is full redemption.
8 He himself will redeem Israel
from all their sins.
Cornelius knew about faith - reflecting back the Living Water to Jesus - our very source; Wonder with me, did Jesus find this faith compelling and move to Capernaum? Matthew 9:1 refers to Capernaum as Jesus' "own town." "Jesus went with him" ... perhaps. And we want Jesus to live within us with this Joy.
Why would Cornelius have been interested - with his great faith - in works? Certainly not fear! Fear is only discovery, the very, very beginning of wisdom of the Power available to God. God is Love and cancels out fear. Perfect Love casts out fear! Fear makes discomfort. God tells us He runs to us when we seek His love, mercy and forgiveness. Jesus tells us He longs to take us under His wing. For comfort. Deep and abiding comfort, sustaining and nurturing us. Jesus.
What would Cornelius have known about forgiveness?
Abraham believed God. And his faith was counted as righteousness. Misplaced when he tried to "fix" God's Word for Him. And called righteous again for his belief in God.
Jesus answered Cornelius' prayer for faith. Frequently Jesus answered prayers starting with the blessing of Forgiveness, sometimes announcing forgiveness - yet forgiveness is implied. Forgiveness opens the door of faith. In forgiving, we open pathways God would have us walk in.
So Jesus went with them.
Just as God said,
How often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings. ~ Luke 13:34
♔ Lord Jesus Saves †