11 – The Soldier’s Servant

Luke 7:1–10

A Roman officer believes that Jesus can help him

1 After Jesus had finished speaking to the people, he went to Capernaum. 2 A Roman officer there had a servant that he liked very much. The servant was very ill and he was dying.

7:1The Roman officer was a soldier in the army of Herod Antipas. He had authority over 100 men. The officer was a good man that took care of his men. He was not a Jew, but the Jews spoke well about him. They did not usually speak good things about the Romans.

3 The officer heard about Jesus, so he sent some important Jews to speak to him. ‘Please go to Jesus,’ he said to them. ‘I would like him to make my servant well. Ask him if he would come to do that.’ 4 The Jewish leaders went to Jesus. They asked him, ‘Please would you do something to help this Roman officer. 5 He loves the Jewish people. He himself built a meeting place for us.’

6 So, Jesus went with them. When he was not very far away from the house, the officer sent some friends to talk to him. He told them to say to Jesus, ‘Sir, I do not want to be a trouble to you. I am not good enough for you to come into my house. 7 That is why I did not come to talk to you myself. Instead, just say that my servant will get better. I know that he will then be well again. 8 In my work, someone has authority over me. I also have authority over other soldiers. I say to one soldier, “Go!” and he goes. I say to another one, “Come!” and he comes. I say to my servant, “Do this!” and he does it.’

9 When Jesus heard this message from the officer, he was very surprised. He turned towards the crowd that was following him. He said to them, ‘I tell you, I have not found anyone like this man in all of Israel. Nobody else believes in me as well as he does.’

10 The friends of the officer then returned to his house. When they arrived there, they saw that the servant was well again.

Luke 7:1-10 EasyEnglish Bible (EASY)

Did you know?

  • The army officer was a Gentile and the most powerful man in the area.
  • This army officer worshipped God.
  • Jewish ‘meeting places’ were called synagogues.
  • This is the only time Jesus is surprised at someone’s faith.

The meaning of the story

In this story, we see another example of the power of the word of Jesus. It is a story about an army officer. He was rich and powerful. But he knew that all his power could not save his dying servant. But he had heard about Jesus and knew that Jesus had the power to heal his servant.

The officer knew that Jesus’ word is so powerful that he only has to speak and it happens. He knew that Jesus’ word is much more powerful than his own word. From far away, Jesus commanded the servant to become well again. Immediately the man was healed. Nobody’s word has power like the word of Jesus.

The officer knew how helpless and weak he was. He knew he did not deserve Jesus’ kindness. More important than this, he knew how strong and loving Jesus is. Jesus wants everyone to have faith like this man.

Who is Jesus?

When God made the world, he spoke and everything was made. Jesus showed the same power. In the last story, Jesus spoke to an evil spirit and the spirit immediately obeyed Jesus’ word. In this story, Jesus spoke to the sickness in the body of the servant and the sickness immediately left him.

Jesus has the power to make sick people healthy again.

Thinking about the story

  1. What did this officer know about Jesus?
  2. Why did the officer send some Jewish leaders to Jesus?
  3. Why did the officer send another group to Jesus?
  4. What is faith?
  5. What does this officer teach us about faith?