God’s Mighty Acts Through Jesus

MEMORY VERSE: “Hearken unto this, O Job: stand still, and consider the wondrous works of God.”—Job 37:14

MATTHEW 8:5-17

THE accounts of the many miracles performed by Jesus never lose their interest and charm. The true believer accepts these accounts as being literally true, and those who understand the divine plan for human redemption and recovery from sin and death see in Jesus’ many miracles marvelous illustrations of what will be done for all mankind during the coming thousand-year reign of Christ, when all sickness, pain, and death will be destroyed, and all the dead awakened to enjoy the blessings of the millennial kingdom on conditions of belief and obedience.

We see in the miracles of Jesus a display of what our memory verse refers to as “the wondrous works of God.” The centurion, whose servant was sick of the palsy, sensed from what he had heard of Jesus’ mighty works that he must be endued with great authority and power. While Jesus offered to go to the centurion’s home to heal his servant, the centurion expressed his belief that with Jesus this would not be necessary, that all he needed to do was to issue the command from where he was, which was in Capernaum, and the servant would be healed.

When Jesus heard this man’s expression of faith he marveled, and said, “I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.” Based upon this implied lack of faith on the part of the Israelites in general, Jesus said, “Many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven. But the children of the kingdom [“but those who should have belonged to the kingdom”—Phillips] shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

Here again is a reference to the exercise of mighty power in accomplishing an important feature in the plan of God. That the people should come to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob—other accounts add, “and all the prophets”—means that they will then be awakened from the sleep of death. These to whom the people come are the ones referred to in Psalm 45:16 as the “fathers” of Israel, with the information that they are to be made “princes in all the earth.” Paul referred to this class as being brought forth from death in what he describes as a “better resurrection.”—Heb. 11:35

These will, in the messianic kingdom, be the human representatives of the divine and invisible Christ. They will be the rulers in the earthly phase of that kingdom. Those here referred to by Jesus as “the children of the kingdom” to whom the high honor of a place in the spiritual phase of the kingdom was first offered, will, in the resurrection, find themselves “cast out” of this high position, because of their lack of faith and obedience. The weeping and gnashing of teeth on the part of these simply denotes their great disappointment and chagrin.

This expression occurs in various contexts in the New Testament, but never does it imply that those to whom it applies are to suffer eternal torture in a fiery hell. No one will thus suffer. This is one of the unholy superstitions which has come down to us from the Dark Ages. Concerning the Israelites who rejected Jesus the Apostle Paul wrote, “All Israel shall be saved.” (Rom. 11:26) How glad we are for the extension of God’s mercy toward these, and for giving them an opportunity to gain salvation through Jesus, and through the agencies of his kingdom.

After Jesus made this observation concerning the lack of faith in Israel and what it would mean for the faithless, he turned to the centurion and said, “Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so he it done unto thee.” We are informed that the servant “was healed in the self-same hour.”

The reference to Jesus entering Peter’s house and healing his wife’s mother is interesting: it indicates that Peter was married. Just how those who claim that Peter was the first pope can harmonize this with their dogma concerning the celibacy of the priesthood, we do not know.

Even at the close of the day the people continued to bring the sick and afflicted to Jesus, including those who were possessed with devils, “and he healed all that were sick.” Jesus also awakened the dead to life; and thus his illustrations of kingdom work were all-comprehensive.


What important lesson did Jesus draw from the vital faith of the centurion?

Was Peter married?

Will the dead be awakened in the messianic kingdom?

Dawn Bible Students Association
|  Home Page  |  Table of Contents  |