In my blog I talk a lot about the concept of sonship. This is how God views us all (male and female) through the blood of Christ. There needs to be an understanding of the relationship of sonship to walk in the power of the Lord. Sometimes, the tension between the two creates a problem for some Christians.
In going through the Gospel of Luke, chapter 7, verses 1-10, contain an incident that highlights this issue. It happened when Jesus was in Capernaum.
When Jesus had finished saying all this in the hearing of the people, he entered Capernaum. There a centurion’s servant, whom his master valued highly, was sick and about to die. The centurion heard of Jesus and sent some elders of the Jews to him, asking him to come and heal his servant.
In that town, there was a Roman officer whose servant was sick. He was a part of the occupation force in Israel. He knew that not many people were happy with the Romans being there, but he had the town elders on his side.
Listen carefully to what the elders said to Jesus about this man.
When they came to Jesus, they pleaded earnestly with him, “This man deserves to have you do this, because he loves our nation and has built our synagogue.”
The elders literally said, “this man is worthy because…” They based his worthiness upon good works. We now know from Scripture that this is wrong thinking. It’s foolish to think that my good works somehow improves my standing with God.
Jesus, however, understood their heart.
Later on in this Gospel, we’ll look at the parable of the Prodigal Son. For now, I want you to see something that he said, because he put it in just the right words.
The son said to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.”
It’s the same question that most of us wrestle with as believers. Am I worthy? This is usually what drives us to the law (or to the pigpen). I need to understand what makes me worthy of having God’s power manifest through my life.
Look at the Lord’s response to these elders.
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. That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed.”
By the centurion’s own words he said, “I am not worthy.” The elders said what they thought Jesus wanted to hear. These friends said what the centurion wanted them to say.
This centurion said that he wasn’t worthy of two things. First he was not worthy for Jesus to come to him. He also said that he was not worthy to go to Jesus himself.
The question arises, was he worthy or not worthy? We know that his faith was ready by his statement, “But say the word…”
It turns out that there are two different Greek words that are used in this passage. They are the two that trip up believers every day. When the centurion said, “I do not deserve to have you come under my roof,” the Greek word hikanos is used. The word hikanos means far enough along or good enough in English.
When the man said, “I do not even consider myself worthy to come to you,” the Greek word axios was used. Axios means deserving in English. In other words, many times we feel that we’re not worthy because we either don’t deserve it or we’re not far enough along in our walk with God yet. The big question is, what does the Word of God say?
Over the next couple of posts, I’m going to look at this incident in detail. We need to understand the Biblical concept of what makes us worthy.
Question: How do feelings of unworthiness affect your Christian walk?
© 2022 Nick Zaccardi