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Daily Reading: Judges 8:18-9:21 ESV, Luke 23:44-24:12 ESV, Psalm 99:1-9 ESV, Proverbs 14:9-10 ESV

Daily Verse: “Now when the centurion saw what had taken place, he praised God, saying, “Certainly this man was innocent!” (Luke 23:47 ESV)

HEKATONTARCHES (1543): “The captain of one hundred men-centurion.”[i]

Captain of men.

Many times, the Bible mentions Centurions.  Soldiers with 100 men under their command.  Not raised in the military, one of my walking buddies spent her life serving our country.  Retired Navy, she tells me about life on the ship with hundreds of other sailors when we walk.  Everyone understood their place and the need to follow orders.  Centurions gave the orders, expecting them to follow.

Each day, Centurions carried the weight of their men’s lives on their shoulders.  When a commander sends his troops into battle, more than likely, not all of them will return alive.  What they believe determines what they do.  For the Centurion in today’s verse, witnessing the death of Jesus changes his opinion.  When the leader’s opinion changes, so do his actions.

Accept change.

When the Centurion realized Jesus’ innocence, his worldview changed.  Luke doesn’t say what happened next, other than they grieved deeply, disturbed by Jesus’ death.  Undoubtedly, life change occurred for all who witnessed Jesus’ resurrection.

Encountering Jesus in your life will change it in ways you can’t imagine.  As you pursue life to the fullest with Christ, you will become a new creation, fulfilling your God-given purpose.  As you blossom, others will notice and want what you have.  They will seek you out, asking questions about what they see.

Even if you’re not the captain of 100 men, you have a circle of influence.  Family and friends witness more than you think. You never know how a kind word or gesture will draw someone to the Savior.  Introducing others to Jesus encourages them to join the journey of pursuing Him and finding life like never before.

[i] Strong, J., & Strong, J. (2010). The New Strong’s expanded exhaustive concordance of the Bible. Greek Dictionary of the New Testament (p.79) Thomas Nelson

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