In Luke 7, a centurion has a sick servant, so he calls on Jesus to solve his problem. His request for Jesus’ help is, in effect, a form of prayer asking for help with a serious problem that was out of his control to solve. He is a humble person who not only desires Jesus’ healing power, but also calls other believers to seek Jesus on his behalf since he felt unworthy to call on Jesus himself. But the key to the passage is Jesus’ statement on authority. The centurion called attention to Jesus’ authority as the Son of God in light of his own position as a leader of hundreds of soldiers. He recognized that Jesus was operating with the same principle of authority and he believed that Jesus didn’t need to physically come all the way to his home to heal his servant. The centurion understood that the word of a person in authority is sufficient for action to take place.
The key to authority over others is that the one in authority has to be granted authority from another person. Just like the centurion had been granted authority over others, Jesus operates in submission to the Father and has been granted authority over all. Many people do not have authority in prayer because they are not in alignment under the authority that they should be under with regards to the Lord. Jesus always got His prayers answered because he was always under His Father’s authority from Heaven which gave Him authority on earth. Jesus’ submission and resulting authority is to be the pattern for the believer’s use of authority as well. Believers can piggyback on Jesus’ authority by being under His authority, and by having Him intercede with that authority on our behalf on earth. We should cause Jesus to marvel like the centurion did because we not only pray, but we do so under the principle of authority. When authority is in alignment, then prayer can be answered because we are praying with the right link that God wants us to have with Him.
- After hearing this week’s sermon, share what it means to be humble in prayer.
- Why is it important that we understand the authority of Christ, and how it relates to prayer?
Let’s Get Personal
- Jesus wants us to be surrendered in our lives as we surrender to His authority in prayer. What areas of your life do you still need to surrender?
- Beyond surrender, prayer has to be a priority. What needs to be adjusted or changed in your life, so that you can prioritize Jesus, and as a benefit, also experience more of your prayers being answered?
- What caused Jesus to marvel at the centurion? Now that you understand how to pray piggybacking on Jesus’ authority, will you approach how you pray differently? Explain how.
Take the Next Step
- Share one way in which your prayer life will change as a result of this message? What impact do you think this will have on other areas of your life?
- What is the issue you want the authority of Jesus to address in your life? Share your request with your group, spend time taking your request to God, and trust in the authority and power of Jesus to answer.
- Want to go deeper? Take a look at the following passages: Ephesians 1:19-23; Colossians 1:16-19; Philippians 2:5-11; Hebrews 7:25
Renew Your Mind
. . . so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow,
of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth.
– Philippians 2:10