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The Roman Centurion had a Change of Heart (The Unsung Heroes of Easter #5)

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Daniel Whyte III

Daniel Whyte III

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TEXT: Mark 15:37-39

The Roman Centurion who was in charge of carrying out the crucifixion was one of the people in closest proximity to Jesus during his final hours. A centurion was a Roman army officer normally in command of about 60 to 80 soldiers. This centurion may have carried out or witnessed dozens of crucifixions during his career. He was a hardened soldier and not easily affected by a criminal's cries of pain and agony. Yet, we find that this Roman Centurion was so affected by the manner of Jesus' death, that he ended up admitting what Jesus' disciples and His beloved followers believed -- that he was the son of God.

1. The Centurion saw Jesus' strength. As Jesus was put on trial, he demonstrated tremendous strength in the way he handled the accusations that were made against him. He never answered his accusers. He never tried to defend himself. He showed great strength and restraint by not fighting back. As someone once said, "Pilate has the army, but Jesus has the power. Pilate has the throne, but Jesus has the authority. Pilate asks the questions, but Jesus holds all the answers."

2. The Centurion saw Jesus' serenity. Not only did Jesus show great strength, he showed great peace in his death. Most people meet death struggling to find a way to get out of it. But, Jesus Christ willingly went to the cross. The reason why he was able to demonstrate great peacefulness in his death is because he knew that he was fulfilling God's purpose for his life.

3. The Centurion saw Jesus' sympathy. In his waning moments on the cross, Jesus demonstrated his love and care for others. At a time when most people would have been concerned only about themselves and easing their pain, Jesus showed that he was most concerned about the people around him.

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