Chronological Gospels: Matthew 8:1-13; Luke 7
This week we are exploring Matthew 8:1-13 and Luke 7. Right off the bat we get to read about Jesus healing the leper. I love this story because this man living with a terrible disease came to Jesus in faith that Jesus could heal him but was humble enough not to assume Jesus would be willing.
So often in my life I have come to Jesus knowing He could heal my brokenness, but submitted myself to His will, whatever that may be. Sometimes our idea of how we want to be healed or helped is different than God’s way and we need to be willing to submit to His ways and timing in faith. His ways are always better than our own.
Describe a time in your life you trusted God’s will to be done in your life even if it meant you would continue to suffer.
When we call on Jesus in faith, trusting in His power and plan, He will do miracles in our lives. It won’t necessarily look like this leper who was literally healed of his leprosy in a moment, but our faith can move mountains in our lives and in our hearts. We give Him our faith and allow Him to have power over us and our lives for His divine plans and purposes.
We see this again with the faith of the Centurion. This Centurion made it clear he was a leader of men and understood what it meant to have great authority. Yet this man in such a position was humble enough to call upon Jesus yet not assume himself so great as to be worthy of Jesus’ help or presence.
Jesus then tells the people, and therefore us, that there will be many gentiles, those not born of the line of Abraham, not of Jewish heritage, who will come to Jesus, but that there will be some born of Abraham’s line who are not truly faithful to God and will not see the Kingdom of Heaven. This teaches us that anyone can come to Jesus, and that He wants true repentance and faith, not lip-service or false faith. Christ came to save ALL who would come to Him in faith.
What difference has faith and repentance made in your life? Why is it important to remember this?
Later in Luke 7 we see Jesus bring a widow’s son back to life. This is such a wonderful story and reminder of God’s power. We also see that this was to bring God glory – not just to help the widow and restore the boy.
We must always remember that all we do should be to glorify God, and that what He does is for His glory. This is a blessing that we get to be a part of His plan and participate in bringing Him glory so that others may also come to Him and likewise bring Him glory through their faith.
Describe a time in your life God was glorified in a way you did not expect.
Jesus reminds us through this chapter of Luke that those who are not offended by Him, those who come to Him in faith, those who truly repent, those who seek and receive His forgiveness are those who bring God glory. Those who have been forgiven much love much.
Those who fail to repent, who remain in their unbelief, do not know the forgiveness and love of God because their hearts remain hardened against Him. Those who have been forgiven the most are more grateful and love God deeper than those who harbor or deny their sin, or who don’t have as much to be forgiven of.
How have you experienced or witnessed the reality of Jesus’ statement that those who are forgiven much love much?