Gospels Greek Text A Basis. The Bible Essay

Length: 10 pages Sources: 3 Subject: Mythology - Religion Type: Essay Paper: #15387708 Related Topics: Pilates, Greek Mythology, Bible, Greek And Roman
Excerpt from Essay :

¶ … Gospels Greek text a basis. The Bible on Luke Chapter 7: 1-10 Sample Essay Outline ( a guideline, adjust argument) ! short introduction (end statement thesis [, a summary interpretation passage]) ! body (argument support thesis) " summary passage " observations contents passage " observations literary, thematic, historical contexts " summary message original audience " explanation application context ! short conclusion (begin -stating thesis).

Jesus' healing of the Centurion's servant

The biblical text of Jesus healing a Centurion's servant is recognized for the numerous ways in which it can be interpreted and for being a significant pillar of faith in the Christian world. The story is particularly intriguing because it involves a Centurion turning to Jesus in order to get help and because it is one of the only two biblical accounts involving Christ performing a miracle meant to help Gentiles and in the presence of these people. This text thus generated much controversy and influenced people to gain a more complex understanding of Jesus' persona and the degree to which he was concerned about the well-being of others regardless of their background.

II. Background

1. Centurions

Roman military officers were known as Centurions during the first century A.D. These people were used to purchasing slaves and with treating them very cruelly -- abuse was very common among these people, as they were inclined to believe that slaves were inferior and could thus be treated however their masters wanted to. In contrast to the stereotypical image of a Centurion, the person in this biblical text seems to be less abusive toward his slave and actually goes through great trouble in order to save the boy.

2. Racial division in Jesus' times

Society was strictly segregated during that period and individuals had the tendency to judge others on account of their skin color, ethnicity, or as a result of their religious preferences. This is observed in the text by considering the fact that the Gentile emphasizes his hesitation about asking Jesus to come into his home -- he knows that Jewish law prohibits Jews to enter homes belonging to Gentiles and thus expresses his primary concern. According to Mary Tucker (28), "Jewish religious leaders would not even walk on the same side of the street as a Gentile."

Jesus thus acted in disagreement with generally accepted practices in his time. His choice to cooperate with a Gentile and to even want to help the respective person further contributes to the general Christian perspective on Christ. The Centurion's attitude with regard to Jesus also brings on the idea of equality as a result of one's love toward people, taking into account that it was generally unacceptable for a Roman officer to express interest in cooperating with Jewish individuals.

It is actually surprising that the Roman trusted Jesus' powers and was unhesitant about considering the fact that he would be able to heal the servant in spite of the fact that he would not visit the house the person was in. "The Roman Centurion offered service to his servant by talking to Jesus about his servant's sickness. He was humble, kind, and had great faith." (Good Neighbours Christian Religious Education, 87)

This story actually provides a great deal of information about equality during the era and the degree to which people believed it would be possible for them to coexist regardless of their differences. The fact that the Centurion went through this trouble to save a person largely believed to be worthless demonstrates that love has no boundaries when individuals are determined and when they acknowledge that power lies in the hands of people they are accustomed to discriminate.

Even Jesus' supporters had a tendency to be against communities that they considered different from theirs. Jesus came across several cases in which he would have to save persons who were discriminated by his disciples. "Cures of non-Jews, Gentiles, were not carried out in secret for fear of triggering a flood of foreign sick that he could not have handled; he was capable of dealing with all requests, whatever their number." (Dick, 243) Jesus intended to hide his actions from the rest of the world as a consequence of the repercussions that his actions...


He was well-aware of the fact that his followers were unable to open their minds in order to consider everyone equal and thus refrained from attempting to fuel a series of conflicts.

III. Faith in the minds of the unlikely

When realizing the degree to which the Capernaum Roman trusts his power, Jesus puts across his appreciation of the man and emphasizes the fact that this kind of faith is actually a very rare thing, even among his followers. "Such high praises for the "model minorities" and "righteous Gentiles" reflect the reality of ethnic prejudice prevailing in the psyche of the public but also indicate how Jesus replaces ethnic preference with spiritual character as the criterion of receiving God's favor." (Hawkins, 145)

Jesus himself appeared to be surprised as a consequence of coming across a Roman that truly believed in his powers and who considered there was nothing wrong with doing so. The Roman society during the period worshipped Roman gods and it was thus uncommon for a Roman officer to acknowledge other types of deities. The Roman's faith in Jesus was so great that he was initially hesitant about calling the son of god to assist him -- he considered that his problem (in spite of the significance it had for him) was too small for him to bother Christ.

The Centurion's involvement in the Jewish community was also uncommon for the period. He was apparently especially appreciative of Jewish faith and of the community as a whole and even played an important role in building the local synagogue. The Roman officer's background made him unlikely to express any interest in other faiths, but his condition and his acknowledgement of the existence of the son of god influenced him to take on supportive attitudes toward Jesus and to go as far as to consider his power as being particularly useful when taking into account the circumstances he was in.

The Centurion basically had all the reasons not to believe in Jesus:

He was a Gentile

He most likely had a pagan background

His mission was actually to force Jewish people to subject to the Emperor's power

He was accustomed to warfare

He reached the status of Centurion as a consequence of performing feats characteristic to ruthless military leaders

IV. Summary of message to original audience

Considering ethnic division during the period when the story takes place, it would be safe to say that initial readers were probably shocked with the nature of the events happening in it. As open-minded as some of this audience was, relations between Jewish people and Romans were in a state of tension during the time and many individuals thus had trouble understanding how the two communities would be able to cooperate and to assist each-other selflessly.

Jesus' close followers themselves had a limited understanding of his involvement in making miracles aimed to help Gentiles or non-Jews in general. Even with the fact that they were obviously determined to follow him and his teachings, their thinking was shaped by their cultural values and cooperating with non-Jews was thus perceived as being against their laws.

Through acting the way he did, Jesus was aware of the effects that his actions are going to have on his followers and on the community in general. This would fuel people's tendency to come against him and his teachings and would probably make it less possible for him to be able to help individuals in need. Jesus was even reported to tell non-Jews he helped to refrain from talking about the event, as this would obviously trigger problems that would have a negative effect both on his ability to heal Gentiles and on non-Jews who wanted to believe in him. "He gave them very specific advice, which he told them in a confidential tone, as if these recommendations should in no case be revealed to third parties." (Dick, 243)

What is interesting about Jesus' tendency to hide his actions from the rest of the world was the fact that he obviously knew about how these respective actions would eventually come to be known by everyone. The fact that they were registered in Luke actually demonstrates how his actions lived through time and were brought together in order to inspire individuals all across the world.

Jewish leaders in general promoted the idea that it is wrong for a Jewish person to collaborate with a Roman individual. This is actually one of the reasons why the individuals informing Jesus with regard to the slave's condition emphasized that the Centurion actually played an important role in helping the local community progress. "He is worthy to have you do this for him, 5 for he loves our nation, and he is the one who built us our synagogue." (Luke 7:…

Sources Used in Documents:

Works cited:

Adam, D. "Growing in Awareness." (Kevin Mayhew Publishers)

Dick, A.K. "THE GOD VIRUS: THE PONTIUS PILATE REPORT (complete and unabridged American version)." (Anna K. Dick)

Hawkins, J.B. "Staying One, Remaining Open: Educating Leaders for a 21st Century Church." (Church Publishing, Inc., 1 Feb 2010)

John, J. "The Meaning in the Miracles." (Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, 2004)

Cite this Document:

"Gospels Greek Text A Basis The Bible" (2014, November 29) Retrieved January 21, 2022, from

"Gospels Greek Text A Basis The Bible" 29 November 2014. Web.21 January. 2022. <

"Gospels Greek Text A Basis The Bible", 29 November 2014, Accessed.21 January. 2022,

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